Episode 106 // Jun 04, 2021

Podcast — It's not just about digital

Featuring Chris DuFresne, VP of Experience & Marketing Operations, Allina Health

Setting the stage   

  • Healthcare is way behind in the consumer space. Fortunately, we have other industries to learn from when merging online and in-person experiences.   

  • Chris DuFresne, Vice President of Experience and Marketing Operations, draws from his experience at e-commerce giants Target and Macy's for inspiration at Allina Health.   

  • Dufresne acknowledges that health systems aren't just businesses but states that they need to bolster their businesses to support our missions. To do so, we must redefine patients as "consumers" because patients represent just the person receiving care when other stakeholders – consumers – are involved.   

Transferring retail knowledge to healthcare  

  • Our industry was built for the provider, forcing patients to navigate a complex ecosystem. How do we deconstruct this physician-centric model in a way that puts the consumer first?  

  • Chris DuFresne challenged health systems to use consumer-centric industries as benchmarks. For example, health systems can ask themselves, "How do we make patient scheduling as simple as OpenTable?"  

  • Part of becoming consumer-centric in healthcare is honoring various consumer preferences and needs without overwhelming consumers with options. For example, some people may want to call in to schedule an appointment, while others may like to schedule online. The art is making each option convenient and personable even if utilizing call centers.   

When does a connected experience matter most?  

  • The consumer is ok with asynchronous virtual care for minor ailments like sinus infections that are somewhat isolated. 

  • Patients requiring both digital and onsite experiences offer opportunities for health systems to prove their value to patients through connected experiences.  

  • For instance, a digital encounter may require labs. How can a health system get these labs without leaving and redoing the whole visit again? How should that visit be billed, and which services are covered by insurance? How does the consumer know that the price of a virtual visit matches the value they receive?  



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