Challenges in Health Care Communications

by Joanna Robinson | 11/25/15

When it comes to health care communications, insurance providers and pharmaceutical companies face similar challenges. While they may be communicating to a member or a consumer with different needs, the end recipient is a person, who expects to be engaged in a personalized and timely manner via their desired medium. 

We have found that many health care organizations continue to be challenged by this requirement, because, on average, they rely on using six separate systems with manual processes, which are not only time consuming, but can produce error-prone workflows. These factors limit the ability for customization and make multi-channel distribution a challenge.
Using multiple systems also increases the risk of non-compliance. With siloed workflows, health care organizations struggle with proving compliance when audited. Disparate workflows also can lead to slowed production. For health plans, this can result in missing CMS deadlines. While non-compliance can carry hefty fines, the potential damage a violation can have on a health care organization’s reputation is far greater. For instance, health plans supporting Medicare and Medicaid can lose their business rating and it, ultimately, can impact their bottom line significantly. 
When health care organizations evaluate their options, they frequently look at point solutions or building an internal platform. However, both approaches may not address all of their challenges and drive the anticipated ROI. Developing an in-house solution is not the best option, as health care organizations are typically not software companies. This is not where their expertise lies. Working with a software company may not result in an integrated solution and may only solve for one pain point, instead of looking at operations, processes and workflows holistically. 
Alternatively, health care organizations should look at taking a true end-to-end approach that integrates people, processes and technology. When evaluating a potential vendor, they should examine whether their vendor has the expertise needed to develop and execute a solution that will manage the entire lifecycle of their communications, support end-user requirements, mitigate risk and increase overall value.  
Joanna Robinson is Vice President of Healthcare at Novitex