Nicole Speulda

About Nicole Speulda

Nicole Speulda is a former research director for the Healthcare division at Market Strategies.

Where should I go for care?

Understanding How Consumers Make Healthcare Decisions   

Where should I go for care?

It’s day two of my eight-year-old niece’s fever and it won’t break. Before her parents went on vacation, I promised to take care of her. Sure, she wasn’t feeling well, but it was just a fever and we were doing all the right things: Tylenol, rest and fluids. But as day two progressed, she grew more despondent and refused to drink anything. Now what?

We’ve all had to make choices about where to seek care for an unplanned health event, but today we have more choices about where to go.

Whether it’s extended hours, virtual visits or money-back guarantees, choices are transforming care delivery. Understanding how these choices shape decisions will make or break marketing strategies seeking to increase usage. That is why Market Strategies focused its latest self-funded research study on how people choose where to go when someone is sick. What we learned will help answer a question salient in the minds of every health system professional: “How do we maximize the likelihood that consumers will choose us, when deciding where to go for care?”

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Rising Information Consumption Shifts the Patient/Provider Relationship

Rising Information Consumption Shifts the Patient/Provider Relationship

Shopping. It’s as American as apple pie. When we shop, we want deals. We want value. We don’t want to get ripped off. With more information at our fingertips (literally), we rely on a wide variety of information sources to make decisions and maximize the value of our purchases. From downloading coupons and talking to friends to reading online reviews and researching product features, there are a myriad of ways to get the deal we want.

Historically, most American workers didn’t shop for health insurance—it was something employers provided to attract the right people. That has changed. Based on data from the National Health Information Survey, it’s clear that personal healthcare costs have increased each year since 2008 (see table below), and more and more consumers are relying on high-deductible health plans that have low monthly premiums. The assumption has always been that the by-product of higher out-of-pocket costs is a savvier healthcare shopper.

Growth in High-Deductible Health Plans

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