57 percent of seniors are seeking digital health options for managing their health services remotely, according to a new survey by Accenture. The survey data reveals that Americans over 65 years of age are demanding more digital health solutions from their doctors, hospitals and health plans.
With an estimated 3.5 million baby boomers expected to reach over 65 years old through 2023, it is imperative to satisfy and retain the quality of care for the growing senior demographic. These findings suggest that providing access to digital health tools is important to satisfy and retain seniors.
Researchers surveyed older Americans’ attitudes toward their medical providers’ electronic capabilities, as well as the capabilities of their current providers, and found:
- 67 percent surveyed say that access to their health information is important, but only 28 percent currently have full access to their electronic health records
- 70 percent say it is somewhat or very important to be able to request prescription refills electronically, however, fewer than half (46 percent) can do so today
- 67 percent believe it is somewhat or very important to be able to book appointments online
- 58 percent say it is important or very important to email their providers
- 42 percent say the ability to see a doctor virtually without a co-pay is most important
- 15 percent say a mobile app or online tool to schedule appointments electronically is most important
Medicare Plans Must Pursue Digital Channels
Today’s Medicare consumers are digitally savvy, driving higher adoption of digital health tools. To serve the rising aging population, Medicare plans must pursue digital channels that successfully influence buying behavior, engagement and satisfaction:
- Buying behavior. Digital is non- negotiable when it comes to customer preference and differentiation among health plans. Price, value and brand are also becoming increasingly important for acquisition.
- Engagement. Digital dialogue with seniors can mean better outcomes and healthier living. Smart digital health management also helps plans reduce medical costs and close the customer experience gap, improving retention.
- Satisfaction. Digital can improve healthcare quality with a more seamless, collaborative health ecosystem. It can also help plans to create simplified, accessible customer experiences that people share via social networks.
On behalf of Accenture, Harris Interactive conducted an online survey of 9,015 adults (18 years of age and older) across nine countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, England, France, Germany, Singapore, Spain and the United States. The survey assessed the general public’s attitudes toward their
medical providers’ electronic capabilities, as well as the capabilities of their current providers. Where relevant, the survey uses select findings from the 2012 Accenture Doctors Survey to compare the doctor and consumer responses. The research was conducted between July 25-31, 2013.
To learn more about survey findings, visit http://www.accenture.com/us-en/Pages/insight-silver-surfer-catching-ehealth-wave.aspx