engaged healthcare consumers

As healthcare consumers find themselves saddled with greater financial responsibility for their healthcare, while benefitting from enhanced information transparency, they hold increasingly higher expectations

Greater Financial Responsibility

  • A huge undercurrent in healthcare is that consumers (patients / members) – not fiduciaries such as governments, health plans, or employers – are increasingly responsible for their healthcare decisions
  • Increased cost sharing in the form of high-deductible health plans and tiered pricing have prompted consumers to be more active in their healthcare decisions
    • In 2014, consumers with health plans with at least a $1,000 deductible reached 41%, up from 10% in 2006
    • Specifically, the average annual employer-based health plan deductible was over $1,200 for individuals in 2014 and non-group health plan deductibles (sold on new health insurance marketplaces) are even higher, with the most popular plan deductible averaging just over $2,560
  • With more “skin in the game,” individuals are demanding more convenience, better information and improved experiences that mirror those in other areas of their lives

Heightened Scrutiny and Expectations of Healthcare Consumers

  • As quality data becomes more pervasive, consumers will take note, seeking better value and optimal outcomes
  • A study by the National Institute of Health found that hospitals scoring in the top quartile of satisfaction reported more than twice the margin of those at the bottom of the distribution
  • According to Forrester Research “Customer Experience Index”, out of all industries, online consumers had the worst interactions with  health insurance plans at a time when over 60% of consumers cite customer experience as a key competitive differentiator
  • Healthcare organizations, therefore, need to not only measure and monitor the experiences of their members and patients, but also find ways to impact and improve these sentiments and perceptions
  • The combination of population-level and point-of-care analytics can identify clinical opportunities and deficiencies while improving real-time dialogue, influencing overall experience and strengthening brand loyalty

Greater Transparency

  • Broad access to information via websites and mobile apps is  improving consumers’ understanding of their health and narrowing the information gap between patients and healthcare organizations
  • According to the Pew Research Center, 72% of internet users say they looked online for health information within the past year
  • Further, 1 in 3 American adults have gone online to figure out a medical condition; and of these “online diagnosers”, 41% had a medical professional confirm their diagnosis
  • Notably, 26% of all internet users have read about someone else’s healthcare experience in the past year
  • As health information becomes more accessible, accurate and understandable, patients are more likely to actively participate in their care and make informed decisions