strategy+business is published by PwC Strategy& LLC.
or, sign in with:
strategy and business
 / Spring 2007 / Issue 46(originally published by Booz & Company)


Health Care’s Retail Solution

The Road Ahead
It’s clear that the future of health care in the U.S. will be consumer-centric, but exactly how this will play out is still coming into focus. The evolving model will be influenced by a number of factors, including retail health experiments now unfolding in other countries, as well as by the experiences of other consumer-driven industries such as retailing and banking. What is certain is that the health-care landscape is undergoing a profound alteration that will change the dynamics of all the industries connected to it.

The shifts will create enormous opportunities that will challenge and reward insurers, providers, product makers, intermediaries, and even new entrants. Virtually all of these opportunities are in new or significantly altered competitive spaces. And in each of these spaces are gaps that need to be filled in order to connect increasingly involved consumers with the right providers, in the right setting, at the right time, with the right services, at the right price. When that does happen, we’ll see genuine competition that addresses the affordability crisis, increases coverage for the uninsured, and provides a sustainable private-sector solution for healthcare in the United States.

Reprint No. 07107

Author Profiles:

David G. Knott ([email protected]) is a senior vice president with Booz Allen Hamilton based in New York City. He works with health services clients on corporate and business unit strategies and transformation programs.

Gary Ahlquist ([email protected]) is a senior vice president with Booz Allen Hamilton based in Chicago. He specializes in the strategy-driven transformation of insurance companies, health plans, and health providers.

Rick Edmunds ([email protected]) is a vice president with Booz Allen Hamilton based in Washington, D.C. He specializes in the life sciences sector.

Also contributing to this article were former Booz Allen Hamilton Vice President Phil Lathrop, former Booz Allen Associate Bela Prasad, and Booz Allen Principals Danielle Rollmann and Cindy Vanderlinde-Kopper, and Consultant Jeffrey L. Hung. 

Follow Us 
Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google Plus YouTube RSS strategy+business Digital and Mobile products App Store



  1. Gary Ahlquist, David Knott, and Philip Lathrop, “Prescription for Change,” s+b, Fall 2005: Why consumer-directed health plans are the last chance to avoid a government-controlled monopoly. Click here
  2. Joe Flower, “Five-Star Hospitals,” s+b, Spring 2006: How some hospitals are thriving by taking a consumer-centric approach to care. Click here
  3. Michael E. Porter and Elizabeth Olmsted Teisberg, Redefining Health Care: Creating Value-Based Competition on Results (Harvard Business School Press, 2006): Analysis of the U.S. health-care system, with suggestions for curing its ills.
Sign up to receive s+b newsletters and get a FREE Strategy eBook

You will initially receive up to two newsletters/week. You can unsubscribe from any newsletter by using the link found in each newsletter.