Making Healthcare Access More Shoppable to Build Enduring Relationships with Patients

Making Healthcare Access More Shoppable to Build Enduring Relationships with Patients
Making Healthcare Access More Shoppable to Build Enduring Relationships with Patients

From left: Dr. Patrick McGill of Community Health Network; Madison Miner and Derek Streat of DexCare

Retail health and the consumerization of healthcare are trends that continue to evolve, but how are they playing out online? A recent webinar sponsored by DexCare delved into this topic, exploring how the consumerization trend is shifting expectations for health consumers, how companies are enlisting AI tools such as machine learning and Chat GPT to improve the patient experience, and how lessons learned from eCommerce are being applied to healthcare.

Derek Streat, CEO of DexCare, led the discussion with Madison Miner, chief of user growth at DexCare, and Dr. Patrick McGill, chief transformation officer with Community Health Network.

“Our aim is to understand the opportunities and challenges facing different stakeholders in healthcare looking to expand ecommerce beyond the mere procurement of medical supplies and actually into the delivery and digital enablement of care in ways that help them build enduring relationships with consumers and patients,” Streat said.

That includes making access to care more shoppable, making care easier to discover, making it easier for customers to compare and learn more about their care options, and making access to care faster, easier and more transparent, according to Miner.

But there are plenty of pitfalls in improving healthcare eCommerce for patients, particularly when it comes to leveraging their data to create a more customized intuitive patient experience, McGill observed.

“There’s this inherent lack of trust of data security when it comes to health systems. There’s a lot to unpack when it comes to data security and data privacy. Is that data secure? Is it going to be used in other places? Then there’s the privacy component. How is their personal data, their personal health information being used along that care continuum?,” McGill said. “Healthcare is unique because there’s automatically a third party in this payment equation, whether it’s Medicare, Medicaid, or commercial insurance. So how does that go along this continuum? Oftentimes, that’s very confusing for people. How do I navigate my health system but also how do I navigate my insurance coverage and who pays for what and what am I on the hook for?”

McGill added that as far as recommendations are concerned, care is usually sought out by word of mouth. People ask family and friends which providers they recommend. How could that be translated into a digital format? In other industries, it’s the digital media, it’s TV, movies and videos that are influencing people’s decision through product placement.

“I really think as we start to talk about this idea of consumerism, it gets very complex, very quickly, more so than other industries,” McGill said.

One challenge is that there’s a supply-demand mismatch, McGill noted. Technology needs to be used to support precision healthcare — the right care at the right time with the right provider. And that’s where things get really complex.

To access a recording of the webinar, please fill in the box below.

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