Helping people choose their own care journey

People today expect more from their digital experiences. They want to feel important and as if the healthcare organization recognizes and takes notice of them. Gone are the days of mass services and black box personalization. Leading healthcare organizations are becoming collaborative partners in creating—not just providing—experiences that help consumers to feel important and informed. They are working with healthcare consumers themselves to create new digital experiences.

People still want the many benefits of customization, but they are skeptical of the non-transparent methods that organizations use to deliver it. They want more ownership of their data and of the experience itself. The rise of 5G and augmented reality (AR) put more pressure on leaders to make this a reality.


of health executives believe that to compete in a post-digital world, organizations need to elevate their relationships with customers as partners.

Amplified options

COVID-19 forced people to interact at a distance, leading to a rise in telehealth visits and other options for receiving care. We’ve seen a 15-20x increase in virtual visit volume for telehealth providers during the pandemic1 and our estimates show that in the future, 1 in 3 healthcare visits will be conducted virtually.2 Doctors and patients alike are warming to the idea of using video and digital means to interact. People are increasingly open to using technology to solve problems in new ways. This willingness to explore alternatives shows consumers’ openness to new service delivery options. And as people become more versed in and familiar with the technology, these care models will stick.

To adapt, healthcare payers and providers need to redesign digital experiences with new models that amplify personal agency and thereby their capacity to act. Consumers must feel comfortable with how their information is used; they want some control in the process. Healthcare organizations can help turn these formerly passive audiences into active participants by transforming one-way experiences into true collaborations. Doing this well is a way to differentiate in a market where virtual is becoming more mainstream.

Connecting care through data

We have access to more data than ever. A person’s Apple Watch can tell their heart rhythm. Their FitBit can show oxygen saturation levels. Useful and actionable data is everywhere, but the healthcare industry is missing opportunities to offer a truly integrated experience by combining these bits of data that are coming in.

Connecting the dots of data allows healthcare organizations to predict what a patient might need next (just as an airline predicts your meal selection and desired seat choice based on data). People want these types of experiences. Patients—especially those with multiple comorbidities—want tools such as apps that can guide them through their care journey.

Seventy percent of healthcare consumers are "concerned about data privacy and commercial tracking associated with my online activities, behaviors, location and interests.

Establishing agency and trust

Healthcare payers and providers are customizing digital experiences, but they haven’t mastered providing the transparency people want. Organizations need to provide people with the choice to determine whether they want to choose their own experience or not. When they choose their own experience, how is that information used during the care experience and after?

It will be critical to adopt a data privacy mindset and convert it into a set of capabilities. For instance, creating a granular profile and preferences page where users can select what they are willing to share or not, and decide how much tailoring they want. Organizations can build trust with their users by offering more transparency about data collection and other important topics like pricing.

Bind health insurance allows people to better understand out-of-pocket costs for not just for a provider, but for an entire set of services. They use a comprehensive claim history to model costs and provide a “total cost to me” figure that includes everything from facility charges to lab testing. Patients gain insight into exactly what they are paying for before they choose a provider or service.

Data sharing for the greater good

MIDATA, a nonprofit cooperative that serves as a trustee for data collection, helps to ensure citizens’ control over their personal data. Members with an account can grant access to their personal data to actively contribute to medical research and clinical studies. Users select which data they want to share. Members are informed and can participate in decision making processes—and they can withdraw their personal data at any time. All datasets are encrypted and only the user can access his or her data set.

What can healthcare leaders do next?

Personalize experiences

Providing immersive and meaningful digital experiences is how leading businesses in healthcare and beyond are connecting with their customers.

Empower consumers

Healthcare technology leaders must find ways to provide individuals with more capacity to act and make them co-creators of their experiences.

Set up for future success

Emerging technologies such as 5G have the potential to make experience customization ubiquitous across people’s lives.

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1 Forbes

2 Based on % of consumers with desire to have virtual visits, the % of visits that are applicable for virtual settings, and sustained 650% adoption growth post-COVID-19 (Accenture Research); pre-COVID telehealth use = 5%

Kaveh Safavi

Senior Managing Director – Consulting, Global Health

Brian Kalis

Managing Director – Accenture Strategy Lead, Health


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