Corporate Behemoths in Healthcare: Will the Patient Win? | healthcare

The past several weeks have been abuzz with the mergers and acquisitions in the healthcare arena. CVS has purchased Aetna for a cool 69 billion dollars and went through the regulatory process with flying colors. Amazon (on their quest for world domination) has teamed up with Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway and financial powerhouse J.P. Morgan to use their resources, influence and power to, according to Buffett, “tackle healthcare costs in our nation.” Buffet also said that because the U.S., at 18% of our gross domestic product, the U.S. is at a competitive disadvantage, at 3.3 trillion dollars annually. He believes the private sector can handle healthcare better than the government.Albertson’s, a grocery company, is ready to acquire retail pharmacy giant Rite Aid. And now, Cigna, the insurance behemoth, is buying Express Scripts in a deal for upwards of 50 billion. Software giant Apple is dipping their toe into employee health, while things are starting to rumble at Wal-Mart, the retail monster.After all of that information, you need a breather. But will a disruption by these companies be the thing that makes healthcare better in the U.S.?Yet, as a patient advocate and caregiver supporter, my main concern is this: Will all of this be a win for patients, caregivers and families? You know – the healthcare customers?While the shake-up in healthcare is oh-so-long overdue, is the combination of behemoths the right way?First, this healthcare shake-up won’t be the last of the behemoths to combine. I would be willing to bet on that. We have yet to hear from the likes of Microsoft, Walgreens, Google or any of the Generals (Electric, Motors, Mills). What about other insurers? Where is Humana or United Healthcare in this game?Many companies will follow suit. It’s just a matter of time. I liken it to the most popular girl in high school getting into a relationship with the most popular boy and becoming a force to be reckoned with. Everyone will see the trend, its benefits and potential, and jump into it. Sorry for the high school analogy.The point is everyone sees that it is time for change in healthcare.So what’s in it for patients/customers?Something we must question is this: Are these corporations in it for the billions of dollars that healthcare is worth or do they really want better conditions, cost and efficiency for patients? Will the combination of all these behemoths reach past their employees and meet the needs of all patients in our nation? What are their motives?My mission is to empower patients and caregivers to navigate healthcare confidently and correctly, to save them and all parties involved time, money and frustration. I show them that they have rights and responsibilities in their Healthcare journey and must take a strong and active role in their care. Patients are the lifeblood of the healthcare system.None of these behemoth combinations will be successful without patient/customer buy-in. They’d better put all of their goals into a nice and helpful package for patients so they feel supported and empowered. If these corporations can show how the patient will be helped and how their alliances can save money for all parties involved, they should have no trouble in the regulatory processes they face.But I implore all of you behemoths… DO SOMETHING.Do something for the 64% of Americans who avoid getting care because they are afraid of the costs.Do something for the working poor who make too much for Medicaid and not enough to afford skyrocketing healthcare premiums.Do something that shows how healthcare can actually be affordable and where service prices do not have to be excessive.Do something to empower patients and establish real healthcare cost transparency.Do something about actual care and system processes to show that it doesn’t have to be as difficult or time-consuming as it is currently.You behemoths have the power to change healthcare for the better for the foreseeable future and possibly, forever. Please don’t look down from your Ivory Towers upon us mere mortals and pity us or hope for the best. Do something.Make it a win for patients, and we all will win.

What is Fashionable? | Fashion

Fashion is fitting into the scene and making one look the best that he or she can look. Fashion is the norm of clothing, cars, homes, and yes, even pets. Fashion is fashionable. What is fashionable though?Fashions change all the time. There are some constants about fashion though. The outfits should fit appropriately and be flattering. The vehicles should be safe and clean. The homes should be comfortable and personable. The pets should be well cared for. Now that we know the constants, how does one achieve these constant fashions?Fashionable outfits typically sport the name of a high end designer. This is not necessary though, since in other parts of the world, say the Philippians, fashionable pants include the Levi pant line. This is considered an expensive brand in the United States, but in other parts of the world, it is. Fashionable clothing is clothing that fits well and compliments the body of the wearer. Fashionable clothing does not show too much skin or appear to be too tight. Fashionable clothing does not restrict movement, but rather enables the individual to be as comfortable and natural as possible.Fashionable cars are much like fashionable clothing. What is expensive in one country is not in the other. In America, the BMW is considered one of the most expensive cars on the market. In Bosnia, everyone drives a BMW and people want the Ford Taurus. How is that for luxury and fashion? A fashionable car is a vehicle with personality and is clean at the same time. There should be plenty of the driver in the car and plenty of car to be seen. Dirty is never fashionable and clutter is much like dirt.Fashionable homes are sketchy. Everyone wants a home. Homes in themselves are fashionable. A fashionable home is a home that is well put together with general themes for each room. The living room should not have lawn chairs. The dining room should not have a weight bench. The kitchen should not be storage room. Fashionable homes are all about themes and cleanliness.Fashionable pets are scary. While it can be “fashionable” to have a specific breed, it is far more ‘fashionable” to have a healthy and happy pet. Remember though, pets are for life, not for fashion. Once you get a pet, you are in a till death-do-you-part relationship with that pet. Think before you purchase.

3 Healthcare Marketing Secrets You Never Knew | healthcare

Marketing a healthcare business is tough! the Healthcare Industry is a unique field because while you deal with the very sensitive nature of your patients’ treatment, which often frighten you, make you vulnerable or confuse you, you also work in a very scientific and avant-garde industry where treatments, tools and systems in constant evolution. Today, healthcare providers are rarely caught up in the new health marketing strategy and sales processes or respond to technological advances.The healthcare marketing landscape has shifted dramatically the past decade with the increase of technology tools, social media, and digital devices. A recent article for Socialnomics quotes Tricia Wilkerson, Senior Marketing Specialist at Conifer Health Solutions, on the state of B2B Marketing in the Healthcare industry: “Healthcare is notoriously behind other industries when responding to technological advances and audience expectations, so it remains important that marketers push the industry with smart trend adoption.”Here are some important stats to consider as you begin planning out your marketing strategy:• As of 2016, there were more than 326 million people in the U.S. Each one of them with their own personality and each one of them a potential patient.• 52% of smartphone users gather health-related data from a smartphone.• 91% of adults have their smartphone within arm’s reach 24/7.• According to recent Facebook data, the number one most asked for recommendation is a doctor or a healthcare provider.• There are 8.2 billion health-related video views on YouTube.As in many B2B industries, long sales cycles can mean change comes slowly to marketing strategy. So, to make it a little easier for you, here are some essential truths we’ve discovered about healthcare marketing. Here are the three healthcare marketing secrets and how they can rejuvenate your business:#1 Research and Define Your Ideal CustomersWhen you try to reach a particular audience, your success depends on how deeply you can guide them. Focusing on a certain segment of the market to generate and attract potential customers will not only help you polish your marketing, but also ensure that the customer association you get from your sales and marketing operations will have a better success rate.How to Reach Your Target Audience in the Healthcare Industry?If you are looking to improve your health care marketing, you may have realized that not all messages will be adapted to all audiences. Partnering with a marketing professional with health care experience is always a smart strategy. Before doing anything else, you need to consider your audience:• For whom are you creating this report?• What do they want to know?• What will they do with the information?For any organization and practice of medical care of all kinds (hospitals, manufacturers, doctors and surgeons, dentists, pharmacists or groups), the more specifically the target audience defined, the greater their capacity to inspire a positive response.Once you have identified your targeted audiences, it is helpful to gather some information about them. This information can help you determine the information needs of your audience, how you can communicate with them more effectively, and where and how you can contact them.#2 Create Valuable ContentHow do healthcare marketers develop and promote relevant content? First, they must understand the needs of clients by building insight through primary research, syndicated sources, and behavior analysis. Next, they need to create content that meets their needs, such as video, blogs, articles and supports brand objectives. Finally, promote content in the media where customers interact and share.According to a new report, 85% of healthcare B2B marketers have a content marketing strategy, but only 4% believe their programs are extremely effective.For a healthcare marketer focused on a pediatric service line, creating helpful content could mean writing an educational article on the merits and concerns of pediatric psychology. When planning to increase content production when the vast majority does not believe that their content marketing efforts are highly effective, B2B marketing specialists are potentially prepared for failure.Content marketing nurtures a long-term relationship with customers, which is critical in the medical industry.3 Tips to Grow Your Healthcare Company with Content Marketing:1. Know what your customers want to learn2. Be a healthcare industry leader3. Capitalize on current eventsThe following tips will set you up with the knowhow you need to produce better content for your readers. Content marketing is an excellent way to both position your healthcare company as a thought leader and to generate new leads and customers for your business. Be creative and offer information that provides real insight for your customers.Target Ideal Buyers with ContentCreating and sharing successful Healthcare marketing content is all about your audience: who you’re speaking to and what you’re trying to say. To make the most out of your healthcare services, you first have to define the group of people you’re creating your content for and what they’ll find useful about it. Content marketing involves creating and sharing quality content that is specifically designed to attract your target customers. If you’re not sure how to get started with your content marketing strategy, we can help! Here’s how to target your buyer persona through content marketing.• Defining And Developing Buyer Personas• Consider The Buying Team• Mapping Content To The Buyer’s JourneyThe beauty of the specific content is that it was created with a specific group in mind to enjoy and learn from the way they prefer to consume content. Without a persona-based content marketing initiative, you run the risk of allowing your competitors to influence buyers by talking about their needs and addressing uncertainties through specific content, which increases the consideration of purchases as along the road.That’s especially true for B2B healthcare marketers, many of whom face more complicated, longer sales cycles, making their challenges with consistent and compelling content creation all the more problematic. With that in mind, there is a lot for B2B marketers in other industries to learn from the world of health marketing. Be sure to always involve a specific target audience through different channels and remain relevant.