How Millennials are changing the healthcare experience
A global survey of over 3,000 people suggests healthcare could be at a turning point to cater to Millennials – who overtook Baby Boomers this year as the largest living generation and who approach their health differently from their parents.
Social networking, on and off-screen
One key finding is that 70 percent of Millennials select their doctors based on referrals from family and friends, whereas only 41 percent of those over age 65 do so.
What’s more, 51 percent of patients over 65 express dissatisfaction with their care directly to their doctors, while 60 percent of Millennials shout out their unsatisfactory experiences to their friends.
Unlikely to hear from Millennials directly, providers face a new challenge with them, for the survey also revealed this generation is likely to trust feedback from their social networks.
It’s becoming digital
Not surprisingly, the survey revealed that Millennials are also more likely to seek out healthcare information online, with more than 54 percent reportedly doing so before even seeing a doctor.
“When I needed to find a new physician, I looked for a doctor within my insurance network and then turned to online reviews,” says 25-year-old patient Kay Zimmermann. “Based on the comments, I ruled out several doctors, including one I was originally considering because someone mentioned they felt rushed and treated like a paycheck during their appointment.”
Like restaurants, movies and other products, healthcare will find itself having to adjust to customers’ newfound appreciation for digital reviews, easily accessible online, and cater accordingly, according to the survey.
“These are informed healthcare consumers who, if they feel rushed, are likely to share criticism online,” says Dr. Tony Oliva of Nuance Communications, who conducted the survey. “Healthcare organizations need to find ways to help physicians optimize time spent with their patients and to protect their reputations.”
Spending more time with patients is one strategy, according to Nuance.