How Consumer Centric is Your Exchange?

July 24, 2015 Ray Catudal

National Health Council Logo


Today’s marketplaces are talking about engagement and decision support tools. But is that enough? What good are tools if you don't get to the bottom of what consumers need to know?

The National Health Council published a report recently that evaluated every state’s exchange or partnership exchange related to continuity of care, uniformity, state oversight, transparency and non-discrimination. The so called progress reports aimed to identify “policies that help protect patients” and “policies that are inconsistent with patient needs”. While some states, like California, Maryland and Connecticut (full disclosure: CT uses CodeBaby IVA technology) have made great progress in becoming more consumer centric, others have a ways to go.

Static Resources vs. Engaging Tools

Image of customer on a globeA consumer centric strategy has many facets, two pieces that seem to consistently come up and are called out as critical are: easy to understand plan information and cost. While some insurance companies have used FAQs and glossaries to break down and simplify industry jargon around choosing a plan, few have yet to offer more engaging tools like virtual assistants to help consumers make better and more informed decisions.  This is surprising when there is overwhelming research that shows how much more engaged users become when offered an avatar to navigate and educate.

According to the Council’s report, “36 percent of exchange enrollees had a hard time finding a list of providers and 38 percent had difficulty accessing plan formularies.” Has your call center seen a spike in calls and questions around providers plan formularies and costs? We’d love to hear what type of calls your call center been getting recently or what calls do you expect to get during open enrollment.

Consumer Driven Healthcare

Image of people discussing what the customer wantsConsumer driven health care is coming our way and some organizations are doing a better job at putting consumers in the driver’s seat than others. Enrollment numbers will show what exchanges are doing a better job than others and who is making health insurance shopping simple and easy.

Intelligent Virtual Assistants provide better navigation and boosts the ability of exchanges to educate, navigate, guide and ultimately convert people through an engaging experience. IVA’s provide better navigation and help consumers understand what needs to be understood. If you are unsure and still don’t believe the stats and numerous studies, ask us about our A/B study option or pilot program.

For more on these topics, we recommend reading:

About the Author

Ray Catudal

As Director of Healthcare Consulting, Ray is focused on CodeBaby’s healthcare specific customers and delivering on CodeBaby’s mission of customer centricity. With over 20 years of experience in medical devices, healthcare and technology, specifically: ehealth, health insurance, and software, Ray is a subject matter expert who contributes to industry articles, and speaks at trade shows and events.

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