This Year, Listen to the Healthcare Consumer of the Future 

Sho of an attractive young woman shopping online while chilling at home on the sofa PeopleImages
Jan 03 2019

If you follow our blog, you may remember meeting Zoey, the healthcare consumer of the not-so-distant-future. Zoey is known for wanting healthcare that fits into her life, is personalized, and is available on demand through a variety of different channels—and Zoey’s expectations are helping to shape tomorrow’s healthcare system.

It’s not surprising, therefore, that a recent Oliver Wyman study shows a growing consumer interest in the “new front door” of healthcare—retail clinics, virtual or telephonic visits, or using an app to get advice from a doctor are convenient solutions that fit into the flow of consumers’ daily lives. And with this increasing demand for digital healthcare has come an explosion of new programs and services (a recent report estimates that the digital health market will exceed $379 billion by 2024).

Employers, as the gateway to the 180 million Americans with employer-sponsored health plans, have been inundated with digital health “point solutions.” These targeted or niche programs often focus on high-cost, chronic conditions, where better outcomes can result in significant savings as well as improved quality of life. A good case can be made for any effective solution that addresses a legitimate need in your employee population – but it’s critically important that they are part of a holistic and intuitive user experience. In other words, consider how Zoey might feel!

Imagine you put in place solutions for weight management, fertility, behavioral health, and pharmacy, each with their own slick mobile app. While Zoey might benefit from each of these services, good luck getting her to engage. The more likely scenario is that she is overwhelmed by the fragmented user experience, and doesn’t engage with any of them. And when Zoey disengages, your investment loses all value.

To combat this fragmented user experience, employers must be strategic when implementing programs, especially as it relates to how data is shared among your vendor partners. Proper transparent data sharing among your vendors will enhance the user experience and prevent your Zoeys from losing interest and disengaging.

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