Stop picking digital services that waste money & don’t add value to your health plan.

April 29, 2021
Josie Rasberry

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By now, I think we’re all past the question “Can digital services improve healthcare?” The answer is a resounding yes for all areas of healthcare, including health plans. For example:

A better question to ask yourself now is, “How can digital services improve my member’s healthcare experience?” This question has more than one right answer, and the solutions vary based on your specific goals and needs. So let’s dive in.

Picking the right digital services.

Not all technology is built equally. Something might look really cool or you may see advertisements for a specific digital service a lot, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right fit for you or your members. When picking the right digital services, you need to first look at the needs and goals of your health plan as a whole, and the needs and goals of individual members. For example, if your service team has a goal to create faster response times and your members report unhappiness with communication, a chatbot could be a great digital service that adds value to your organization and improves members’ healthcare experiences.

What kind of digital services do members want?

Again, the answers to this should depend on the self-analysis you’ve done. With that being said though, there are studies and surveys that point out digital services many people have reported to want or use for their healthcare experiences. In 2018 Cognizant reported patients across all ages want digital services for self-service options. Some of the features that surveyors listed as important were:

  • Determining the estimated costs for procedures.
  • Computing out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Submitting claims.
  • Requesting/accessing claim forms.
  • Locating a pharmacy or refilling a prescription.
  • Searching for providers contracted for the plan.

This information, along with knowing that as time goes on the demand for digital health tools and convenient self-service options will increase, should lead health plans to select a digital service that allows members to do much of what is mentioned above. 

Final thoughts.

It’s really not a question of whether or not digital services can improve member satisfaction, retention, and your health plan’s cost curve. The real question is how to choose the right digital service and how it will specifically help members. The right digital service will:

  • Meet your member’s specific needs.
  • Make your operations more efficient.
  • Reduce costs in your health plan to make up for the added expense of a digital service.
  • Improve key metrics such as member retention and member satisfaction.

Ok, now it’s time to begin researching the options available to meet your members’ needs. To get you started, here’s a link to learn what a Smart Healthcare Platform is and how it can help.

Download the Complete Guide to Retaining Health Plan Members.

Learn the best strategies and tips for retaining your members while keeping costs low.

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