Health plan communications put too much focus on bills and fees

The below article was posted by benefitspro.com on March 29, 2017 and was written by Marlene Y. Satter.

If they want greater engagement from their insureds, health plans should tone down the communications about bills and fees, but that doesn’t mean insureds don’t want to hear from them. In fact, they want more communication, but about their own health conditions.

That’s according to the HealthMine Health Plan Intelligence Survey, which finds 60 percent of insured consumers report they want to receive more frequent communication from their health plan sponsor that is not related to fees or coverage. Only 35 percent of respondents say that their health plan communicates with them about the state of their health and their health risks.

In fact, there are a lot of things that insureds would rather their plans talk to them about instead of fees — except for how to lower health care costs. That’s something they’d like to hear more about, with 29 percent saying their plans communicate with them about it, but 54 percent saying they’d like those plans to do so throughout the year.

And while 39 percent say their health plans communicate with them about their chronic conditions, 45 percent wish they would do so throughout the year.

Twenty-five percent say their plans communicate about information collected from their digital health tools, while 33 percent wish they would do so throughout the year — and interestingly, while 55 percent say their plans communicate with them about recommended health screenings, just 53 percent say they want that throughout the year.

“Most plans are starting to personalize their communication to members beyond fees and coverage to topics that are directly relevant and meaningful to each person’s health,” Brendan Collins, vice president of product at HealthMine, says in a statement.

Collins adds, “As plans continue to improve communication to employees about personal risk identification, closing gaps in care and management of chronic disease, health plans will increase members’ health intelligence and plans can realize greater business value.”

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