Want to help more employees get care through QualityPath?
Increasing participation in QualityPath begins – and continues – only when there is ongoing communication, according to experts who shared their insights at a recent webinar.
While the experts’ six tips were aimed at increasing usage of QualityPath for CTs and MRIs, they noted that most tips could prove helpful in any effort to promote wise health care choices.
Tip #1 – Go to the home with direct mail.
Dave Rusch, vice president of business development at Smart Choice MRI, noted that the female spouse makes more than 75 percent of health care decisions. So make sure the spouse sees your information by sending it directly to the home.
Smart Choice MRI is a QualityPath provider for MRIs. Smart Choice MRI also works directly with employer steerage programs to encourage employees to use Smart Choice locations.
Tip #2 – Clearly state the advantages.
Rusch said employers should aim for brief messages that focus on cost, patient experience and quality. Avoid diving into clinical details. Instead, tell employees what to do to gain the best value.
Tip #3: Endorse and reinforce the message.
As the employer, your word carries a lot of weight. Clearly state that you recommend QualityPath and explain why.
Talking about QualityPath at open enrollment time is a good start, but you should reinforce your messages throughout the year.
Sharing the Decision on Where to Have an MRI
“It is important for a patient who receives an order from a physician to undergo an MRI exam, not to assume that it will be written to the least expensive, highest quality provider. Physicians can be creatures of habit, and may instinctively write the order to the hospital that they are affiliated with, which may not be the best alternative. Like every aspect of health care, a patient should feel comfortable sharing in the decision on where they undergo their MRI exam and not assume that the physician is knowledgeable on every provider available.”
- Dave Rusch, vice president, business development
Smart Choice MRI
Tip #4: Use many channels.
Don’t rely on just one form of communication to get your message across. Instead, Rusch said you should pick the channels that will be effective within your company’s culture. Options include videos, visuals, flyers, table tents and break room posters.
Sharing patient testimonials can be critical because it helps employees understand what the experience will be like. The Alliance offers QualityPath testimonials online, in print and as videos.
Tip #5: Tell consumers about their options.
Kathryn McLeod, manager, product portfolio and strategy for The Alliance, noted that QualityPath CT and MRI providers can help employees with special circumstances. Midwest Open MRI, another QualityPath provider for MRIs, provides a solution that meets the needs of enrollees who are claustrophobic or obese.
Tip #6: Take advantage of the QualityPath toolkit.
The Alliance has created a toolkit for employee communications and will customize materials to meet employer needs on request. For example, posters can be adapted to emphasize that a QualityPath provider is available nearby.
Options available in the toolkit include:
- Patient testimonials in print, online and video formats
- A map showing the location of QualityPath providers
- A brochure, which was recently shortened and simplified to follow Rusch’s recommendations.
- Frequently asked questions.
- Mailing inserts
- Letter to employee homes with postage and production handled by The Alliance
- Emails, articles and text messages
All materials encourage employees to visit www.qualitypath.com or call 800.223.4139 to talk to the patient experience manager.
The Alliance will also provide speakers at your workplace for employee lunch-and-learn sessions.
Aim to Build Awareness
It’s worth noting that all the speakers emphasized the essential role of ongoing communication in persuading people to take advantage of QualityPath.
“Awareness is very critical when it comes to increasing engagement and utilization in QualityPath,” said Paul Roelke, Member Services Advisor.
Dernovsek has more than 25 years' experience in communications, public relations and marketing. From 1992 until joining The Alliance, Dernovsek owned her own freelance marketing and writing business to provide marketing consulting and writing for health-care related entities and credit union organizations. Earlier, she was the director of public relations for Rockford Memorial Hospital and city editor for the Beloit Daily News.
Dernovsek graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism.
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