Part 3 of our Deep Dive into healthcare’s digital transformation
The pandemic has accelerated the evolution of digital healthcare. We’re seeing a broader spectrum of care solutions applied, including virtual, digital, retail, and in-home. From back-office processes to patient-facing experiences, digital technology is driving rapid transformation. Yet despite a threefold increase in patients using virtual care, few are actually satisfied with the quality of that care.
How can healthcare organizations create seamless experiences that build convenience, trust, and loyalty? ThoughtForm has joined with digital strategy firm SDLC Partners to conceptualize new ways to address digital healthcare. Weaving together strategy, technology, and culture, we’re reframing digital healthcare with design thinking as the catalyst.
Recently, our teams came together to discuss three challenges affecting health plans, provider organizations, pharma, and healthcare technology companies:
- Fielding blended healthcare models that integrate digital and traditional care delivery
- Optimizing healthcare processes through digitization and automation
- Creating a welcoming entry to digital channels for patients, providers, and employees
Over the last several weeks, we’ve examined each of these challenges in detail, and offered strategies you can use to meet them. Click the links above to read more about these healthcare insights.
Trend #3: Creating a welcoming entry to digital channels for patients, providers, and employees
A recent webinar focused on digital engagement highlighted the need to step back and look at digital transformation from a new perspective. Quoting one participant, “Hospitals and health systems that want to make the most of their digital transformation should focus on leveraging technology for an attractive digital front door, engaging patients and building loyalty, efficient access to care, and using data for care coordination.”
Companies across the spectrum are now adopting the best consumer digital experiences as benchmarks. Autodesk CIO, Prakash Kota, is currently implementing an employee hub partially modeled on Netflix. According to him, switching between a consumer app and a work website shouldn’t “feel like it’s so drastic.”
But healthcare lags behind. A survey in August 2020 found that 50% of patients said poor digital care gave them a negative perception of the experience. The key to success is balancing human values with blended care models while aligning technological, operational, clinical, and employer stakeholders.
What’s our take on this trend?
The friction patients encounter is already enormous. Everything from choosing the best health plan for their needs, to finding a provider, to obtaining pre-authorizations when needed. Not to mention settling bills post-care.
Outside the world of healthcare, consumer digital experiences set a high bar that leave healthcare digital experiences lacking by comparison. But the consumer stakes for healthcare are much higher. These stakes should earn engagement if the experience barriers are broken down.
While some consumers may be more digitally savvy than others, we’re very nearly at the point of universal digital connectivity. Today’s digital experience is only a prelude to a transformational future. Robotic weigh-ins, pre-visit AI diagnostics, predictive algorithms for preventative care, and much more are on the healthcare horizon.
What’s our advice to healthcare organizations?
- From a user perspective, digital healthcare experiences largely miss the mark. Seek innovation from internal and external sources. Recognize that incremental improvement may no longer be enough.
- Map out all of your user journeys: consumers, business customers, employees, clinicians. They all suffer from digital experience challenges and tech burdens.
- Focus on what users want: intelligently simple interfaces, personalized content, streamlined “one and done” workflows—all delivered with humanity. Watch out for experience killers like click fatigue, poor exception handling, and unintended consequences.
- Learn from the past: Deming’s Quality Circles method and its descendants involve users in the process. They know the problems. Sometimes they may have solutions too.
- Watch closely as tech giants, innovative startups, and pioneering provider-payer organizations like Highmark invest in new approaches. The digital experiences they create are likely to set new standards.
How should your post-pandemic digital transformation look
This merely scratches the surface of what’s currently happening in healthcare. We want to explore what trends could mean for your organization.
ThoughtForm and SDLC Partners have created a strategic partnership to help healthcare organizations quickly develop services, technologies, processes, and experiences that fit both their consumers and the enterprise.
Together, we offer a new approach to delivering innovation that addresses strategy, technology, and culture—all powered by design thinking.