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The Official Blog for Intrado’s TeleVox Solutions

West Corporation

Posted on June 11, 2019 by West Corporation 


Healthcare Is Trailing Behind the Travel Industry in Consumer Experience

What’s the worst travel experience you’ve ever had? Most Americans have a story or two to tell about a travel experience that went wrong. Overbooked flights, lost hotel reservations, rental car trouble, long lines of stranded travelers and missing luggage are just a few examples of some of the disappointing customer experiences the travel industry is known for delivering. And yet, despite these issues, only two in ten Americans (23%) say the healthcare industry beats the travel industry in terms of the consumer experience. That figure is eye-opening—particularly when you consider how many negative travel reviews Americans leave on TripAdvisor’s website alone.

Thirty percent of Americans say healthcare provides worse consumer experiences than travel does, and 47 percent say healthcare is only as good as travel. So, if healthcare isn’t delivering better consumer experiences than the travel industry, then how does healthcare compare against other industries? According to a West survey of 1,036 patients and 317 healthcare providers in the U.S., here’s how Americans rate healthcare patient experiences:

Healthcare Experiences Lag Behind These Industries:

Healthcare Experiences Are on Par with These Industries:

  • Groceries – 30%
  • Travel – 30%
  • Entertainment – 29%
  • Financial Services – 29%
  • Electronics – 29%
  • Clothing – 28%
  • Home Improvement – 28%
  • Utilities – 25%
  • Education – 25%
  • Retail Pharmacy – 24%
  • Groceries – 41%
  • Travel – 47%
  • Entertainment – 46%
  • Financial Services – 48%
  • Electronics – 46%
  • Clothing – 48%
  • Home Improvement – 49%
  • Utilities – 50%
  • Education – 50%
  • Retail Pharmacy – 51% 

Patients expect healthcare experiences to be better than other consumer experiences

One of the actions healthcare teams can take to deliver better patient experiences is to simply improve how and when they communicate with patients. For example, West’s survey revealed that 83 percent of Americans believe healthcare organizations are more likely to run behind schedule or keep their patients waiting than companies from other industries. Whether or not that is true is up for debate. However, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics reports that in 2018, 17.7 percent of flights have been delayed by at least 15 minutes. That’s a lot of flights and a lot of delayed travelers. But what airlines have figured out (and what many healthcare providers have yet to realize) is that by sending messages to notify fliers of delays, consumers are able to adjust their arrival time, helping to minimize frustration.

Healthcare providers can adopt a similar strategy to alert patients of delays. By using their patient engagement technology (that many practices already use to send appointment reminders), healthcare teams can easily send text messages to patients when providers are running behind schedule or need to reschedule. This small effort could make a big impact on patients. Not only would it help reduce the time patients spend in waiting rooms, but it would also help patients feel better about their healthcare experiences. This is only one example, but there are many other opportunities for healthcare teams to use technology-enabled communications to improve patient experiences.

For more information about how healthcare organizations can adopt new communication strategies to deliver better healthcare experiences, download Compared to Other Industries, Healthcare Experiences Need Elevating.

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