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SAN DIEGO—The 2020 NIC Spring Conference hosted by the NationalInvestment Center for Seniors Housing & Care, kicked off thisweek at the Marriott Marquis hotel in San Diego with recordattendance. During the press briefing on Wednesday, NIC CEO BrianJurutka revealed the addition of a fourth Actual Rates softwarepartner, Medtelligent, and discussed the importance and impact ofthe conference theme: Investing in Seniors Housing and HealthcareCollaboration.

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According to panelists on day one of the NIC event, the growthof the cost of healthcare is unsustainable. In a session titled"Five Healthcare Trends You Need to Know," for example, a panel ofexperts weighed in on how five healthcare trends are impacting thesenior living industry. The panel noted that owners and operatorswill confront a future of disruption where scale will matter alongwith a change in the way healthcare is accessed and delivered.

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During a panel titled "Equity and Debt: Financing Private PaySeniors Housing and Skilled Nursing", a mix of capital providersand capital seekers heard directly from the principals involved intwo different seniors housing deals. In that panel, the audiencelearned how the deals were initiated, structured, and finalized,including one that was initially scratched out on a notepad duringa seniors housing conference. Panelists on both ends stressed theimportance of trust, and experience in the industry, when choosingto partner.

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In Thursday morning's opening general session, titled:"Disruption: Convergence of Healthcare and Seniors Housing,"moderator Robert Kramer, NIC founder and strategic advisor, focusedon a macro view of senior housing. "There is a disruption that isgoing on payment and delivery. This disruption is causingtraditional players in the healthcare system to rethink theirmodels as they look to provide better outcomes for lower cost."

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He explained that healthcare players traditionally involved increating networks to provide acute care are expanding to emphasizewellness, care coordination, and management of chronic conditionsto prevent acute care episodes. "The reality is that things arechanging. We have an enormous opportunity and we are part of thediscussion."

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He explained that he is a glass is a half full sort of person."The trends we are talking about creates new opportunities forseniors housing and care providers who are willing to adapt."

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He added that we will either seize this opportunity and takeadvantage of this or others will drive us out of business. "As newentrants and unusual partnerships continue to emerge, old silosseparating healthcare and seniors housing are breaking down."

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How do we take advantage? "There isn't any one way to do it,"said Kramer. "If you don't engage in the opportunity in some way,you will no longer find yourself involved."

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As for what the key driver is of the disruption. The overalldriver is the rising costs of healthcare, said Kramer. "We nolonger have the luxury of time. We are never going back to businessas usual because of the urgency and costs of unsustainable growth.We need to force solutions for cost. That is why we talk abouthealthcare disruption." Stay tuned for more from the NIC event.

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Natalie Dolce

Natalie Dolce, editor-in-chief of GlobeSt.com and GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum, is responsible for working with editorial staff, freelancers and senior management to help plan the overarching vision that encompasses GlobeSt.com, including short-term and long-term goals for the website, how content integrates through the company’s other product lines and the overall quality of content. Previously she served as national executive editor and editor of the West Coast region for GlobeSt.com and Real Estate Forum, and was responsible for coverage of news and information pertaining to that vital real estate region. Prior to moving out to the Southern California office, she was Northeast bureau chief, covering New York City for GlobeSt.com. Her background includes a stint at InStyle Magazine, and as managing editor with New York Press, an alternative weekly New York City paper. In her career, she has also covered a variety of beats for M magazine, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, FashionLedge.com, and Co-Ed magazine. Dolce has also freelanced for a number of publications, including MSNBC.com and Museums New York magazine.