The Future of Healthcare is CX: 4 Ways to Drive Growth and Retention

April 25, 2024 Andrew Reiter

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Whether it be pharmaceutical companies or medical device manufacturers releasing new products to the market, or healthplans trying to maintain quality of service in the face of varying cost pressures, the healthcare industry must remain diligent in its focus on the ever-evolving patient-centered targets of education, the efficiency of care, improved outcomes and satisfaction. A rise in societal health awareness has resulted in higher expectations for patients’ experiences with their healthcare plans, providers, and products.  

Today, patients seek a customer-centric experience that is easily accessible, empathetic, responsive, and quickly resolves their issues. For the healthcare industry, a stratagem for winning and keeping these individuals is to be vigilant in the company’s approach to customer experience and the use of data acquired during patient interactions. Here are four ways that healthcare brands can create a strategic CX that drives patient experience, growth, and retention.  

1. Increase Accessibility and Responsiveness

With the prevalence of, and increasing demand for digitally driven services, accessible and responsive customer service is now considered table stakes to keeping patients happy. Whether you’re a company looking to scale your processes, attract new patients, or retain your existing patient base, developing a solid communication strategy comes down to:  

  • Having a reliable business process team that can meet patient needs and process requests 
  • Maintaining several active channels of communication for your patients to reach you, such as a voice call center, live chat, and email.  
  • Trained agents that can receive private and protected health information with empathy and sensitivity, and relay those patient needs as clearly as possible to the appropriate parties  

Remember, the patient's experience begins before they see a provider. Every related interaction counts towards winning and keeping your patient base.  

  

2. Return to High-Touch, High-Quality Service

In a recent study, only 48% of the policyholders and customers surveyed were satisfied with their plan’s ability to understand their needs. That makes sense, considering that today, US patients divide their care between four to five different provider networks. Provider networks face incredible business opportunities to create patient experiences that show they want to know their patients and inspire them to consolidate their services under one plan. That requires a return to high-touch, quality service.  

Provider networks face incredible business opportunities to create patient experiences that inspire their patients to consolidate their services under one plan. 

Providing a white-glove level of service isn’t just about meeting every customer call. It’s also about maintaining consistent, high-touch communication through each issue, as well as maintaining patient knowledge that allows you to give individualized attention and care when processing sensitive health issues.  

With an aging population, companies must also consider the clarity and conciseness with which they engage patients. Compounded by reduced hearing in many older patients and communication of often-complex topics regarding diagnoses, drug names, and coverage, companies should engage native English speakers with prior healthcare experience for the best possible outcome. 

Navigating the healthcare system can be challenging for many patients, whether it’s understanding the extent of their coverage, securing copayment assistance, or establishing prior authorization for a medication or device. When you’re able to show your patients that they’re a priority, you open the doors to new levels of trust, growth, and retention. 

  

3. Utilize Automation and AI (Artificial Intelligence) to Optimize 

Today, expanding your patient base requires an understanding that goes beyond surface-level insights. With increasing competition and patient expectations, creating a patient-centric experience means tapping into a deep understanding of their needs. 

That’s where customer data comes into play. Gathering and processing patient data into actionable insights is the keystone to improving your service and driving personalized experiences.  
 
However, there’s no doubt that retrieving raw customer interaction data is a massive undertaking. Healthcare brands can rely on automation and AI processes to analyze and structure patient data, allowing them to:  

  • Increase agent engagement and success.  
  • Integrate personalized service based on patient needs, preferences, and agent feedback.  
  • Identify trends and opportunities based on keywords, handling time, churn rate, and more.  

Ultimately, the goal of utilizing automation and AI is to help you find new ways to connect with your patients.  

4. Lean Into a Human-Centered BPO for Patient Growth, Experience, and Retention

84% of patients say that their patient experience is one of the most important factors when selecting a health plan. More healthcare brands are realizing that the customer experience is deeply connected to growing and retaining their patient base. How patients perceive and feel about every interaction is crucial to promoting better business and health outcomes.  

Looking into the future, healthcare companies need more than just a customer service team or partner. Creating a positive patient experience comes down to strategy, constant optimization, and a dedication to providing human-centered, superior service.    

Stay on Top of Your CX Strategy  

Patient expectations are always evolving. At RUI, we know that providing the best patient experience involves constant research, implementation, and optimization. That’s why we’re here to be your guide every step of the way.  

If you’re ready to level up your custom experience strategy, connect with us today

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