Realizing results by delivering the right information, at the right time, in the right way - remains the elusive holy grail of consumer engagement.
A new study published by Accenture Life Sciences shows that only one out of every five patients is aware of the number and type of therapeutic services available to them after diagnosis. The study found that the period between diagnosis and treatment is the most frustrating time for patients, with over two-thirds of survey respondents indicating that there is room for improvement. This represents a great opportunity for healthcare institutions to provide patients with information and support to navigate through this confusing and complicated time.
However, healthcare consumers don’t only need help post-diagnosis. The study also suggests that consumers yearn for notifications from their healthcare professionals when they are at risk of developing a condition which could impact their lives in the future. Thirty four percent of survey respondents highlighted their frustration at the lack of information, support, and guidance they received during this “grey area” of having a pre-condition but trending in the wrong direction.
These findings represent just one recent data point which wipes away a common question asked amongst healthcare professionals tasked with engaging patients and members: “Do my consumers want this information? Do they want and expect more from me?” The resounding answer is “YES!”. Knowing this, we can focus on the key challenges of consumer engagement - knowing exactly WHAT information to present, and WHEN and HOW to present it in a way that resonates with users, maximizing the chance that they will take an appropriate action.
If you are looking to increase engagement with your healthcare consumers, here are 5 steps that can help:
Here are a few ways really smart people I know are doing this, today.
An A.T. Kearney report from 2011 on engaging health plan members articulates the great opportunity that health plans have to lead the charge on healthcare consumer engagement. Although plans may point to some small wins over the past few years, Accenture’s recent findings show the holy grail of engagement has yet to be discovered, if not proven. Now, more than ever healthcare organizations across the continuum of care such as health and hospital systems, big pharma, and even device manufacturers are expected to engage with their consumers across the healthcare journey. This expectation from consumers will force more organizations to set out on the quest, to find the elusive holy grail of consumer engagement.