Consumerism vs healthcare

It’s our problem to solve

Consumers today are used to having easy access to reliable, understandable information for everything from retail shopping to telecom solutions to financial services. They expect to connect to their accounts and personal data anytime, anywhere via the medium of their choice, eg: a 24-hour phone line, a website or a mobile app.

And when it comes to accessing and buying healthcare products, consumers do not differentiate between payers and providers, let alone between healthcare exchanges, ACOs and more. They see it all as part of their healthcare system and they expect to navigate seamlessly between choosing and paying for healthcare services. Healthcare has lagged behind in this realm for a few reasons — HIPPA not least among them – but consumers don’t understand or care about the challenges we face. They simply want information and they want it NOW.

Whether you are the CIO of a healthcare provider or a payer, you need to give consumers access to information that helps them to:

  • Research and compare product and service options
  • Gather and share news and reviews via social networks
  • Select and buy your products and services

As healthcare IT professionals, we are charged with responding to this wiser and growing breed of healthcare consumers via any touchpoint they choose.  In order to present a longitudinal view of patient/member data, we need to overcome the challenges of:

  • Data latency
  • Audience-appropriate vocabulary
  • Master data management
  • Data privacy
  • Data security

This is no easy task, but the digital health experience is not for the faint of heart.  At Coherent Solutions we work with our healthcare clients to solve these challenges where software and technology significantly impact business performance.  Every one of our customers has unique solutions and opportunities to solve the dynamics around meeting consumer expectations.  I will address some of the approaches we recommend in my next blog.