The most recent U.S. Census Bureau data, released in 2015, found that languages other than English are spoken in millions of households across America. Although Spanish continues to dominate, the total number of languages is 350, including less widely spoken languages like Pennsylvania Dutch, Romanian and Cherokee.Read More
Insights on Today's Healthcare Consumer
The current shortage of primary care physicians is expected to continue as Baby Boomer physicians retire. Addressing the shortage—particularly among medically underserved populations—demands creative problem-solving.Read More
The Commonwealth Fund has called primary care the “first line of defense” in addressing the goals of healthcare reform—improving quality of care and reducing per capita medical costs. The shortage of primary care health services contributes to the challenges medically underserved populations face, but it isn’t the only challenge.Read More
Medically underserved populations often turn to other sources to diagnose their health complaints— family, friends, social media and the internet, to name a few. But, as author Neil Gaiman points out, “Google can bring you back 100,000 answers, a librarian can bring you back the right one.”Read More
Now that the United States is embracing a consumer-driven care delivery model, the healthcare industry must remember that health technology, clinical environments and better staff training aren’t the only opportunities for performance improvement. Attention needs to be given to improving the skills, knowledge and priorities of the consumer base itself.
One of the real challenges facing our consumer-driven healthcare market are the relatively low health literacy levels that many Americans have. Lack of basic understanding of wellness practices, healthcare terms, health insurance and billing issues can negatively — and significantly — impact the care choices that consumers make.Read More
Patient engagement and consumer empowerment are necessary elements in a healthcare market that seeks to produce better outcomes. But many hospital systems and healthcare organizations struggle to find effective ways of engaging and empowering their consumer bases. In fact, engagement is not enough – if it doesn’t lead to positive behavior change or reinforcement, it isn’t successful.
Activating patients isn’t easy — it never has been. What works for this consumer doesn’t work for that one, even if, on the exterior, both consumers appear very similar based on demographics or diagnoses. Luckily, health data analytics tools are giving hospitals and provider organizations the ability to glean and store greater insights into healthcare consumers, allowing them to individually tailor their engagement efforts and more effectively empower consumers to assist in the day-to-day management of their care.
How can providers empower consumers to make good healthcare choices? Here are 4 ways:Read More
Many Americans still labor under a number of healthcare misconceptions, especially as they pertain to health insurance, Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and other coverage products. Others suffer from "health insurance illiteracy." Unfortunately, good information can be difficult for consumers to access — and even more difficult for many consumers to understand. But in our national move toward a consumer-based model, Americans have more reason than ever to educate themselves about the delivery of healthcare.Read More