Making Health Equity a Core Tenet of Business Operations

Making Health Equity a Core Tenet of Business Operations

PYMNTS asked industry executives across the payments and digital commerce landscape to give us their take on the pivotal shifts, technological advancements and strategies that have shaped business in 2023. Beto Casellas, executive vice president and CEO of Health and Wellness at Synchrony, says the top trend to watch in 2024 is how technology and artificial intelligence will impact the consumer experience.


It is imperative to reflect on the lessons gleaned in 2023 and prepare for the challenges and opportunities that will unfold in 2024.

Last year, our economy grappled with high inflation and supply chain disruptions, posing considerable challenges for businesses and consumers alike. Nonetheless, the business landscape remains dynamic, shaped by technological advancements, shifting consumer preferences and global economic changes.

In response to this landscape, several key trends emerged in 2023, likely to persist through 2024. According to J.P. Morgan’s Outlook 2024 report, while inflation is anticipated to stabilize, end-of-year predictions for 2023 indicated slowed growth both domestically and globally, according to projections from the International Monetary Fund. Business leaders must monitor these macroeconomic trends and make necessary adjustments to ensure seamless operations.

Among the predictions for 2024, the persistent challenge of hiring and staffing issues in the U.S. economy remains a focal point. Synchrony research underscores the impact staffing shortages have on healthcare practices, affecting performance and revenue predictability. Business owners should not perceive these challenges as inevitable market consequences; instead, an increasingly adopted solution is outsourcing. For those grappling with staffing challenges, now is the opportune time to explore third-party partnerships to mitigate potential disruptions in the face of further market slowdowns.

In 2024, we might see the savings that people had accumulated during the pandemic exhausted, based on predictions from experts at Deloitte. As a result, it’s believed that alongside a slowing economy, consumers will remain cautious about their spending. In the realm of healthcare, individuals already strained by high inflation rates, escalating out-of-pocket costs, and diminishing coverage from traditional health plans may be compelled to forgo essential care due to financial constraints. Recognizing this, we observe a surge in healthcare consumerism, with more individuals actively seeking cost-effective options.

For me, the top trend to watch in 2024 is how technology and artificial intelligence will impact the consumer experience. Across industries, businesses are shifting to customer-centric models, a transformation largely attributed to digital transformation. Evolving consumer expectations demand convenience, digital accessibility, streamlined processes and ethical practices. Businesses must align their strategies with these expectations to build lasting relationships and brand loyalty, especially as 73% of U.S. companies integrate AI into their operations.

With these considerations in mind, Synchrony is proactively working to provide consumers with the most advanced digital integrations to meet their evolving needs. As we forge partnerships and collaborations with other organizations, we aim to continue delivering new and valuable tools to those who rely on our support most.

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