Benchmark Assignment—Health Care Access Options

Introduction

            The landscape of health care is continually changing and
this change is allowing patients to receive medical care without even scheduling
a doctor’s appointment. In our society there are many different health care
options accessible to individuals. Services such as walk-in clinics, web based
resources, and retail clinics are all available for health care consumers.
Retail clinics such as CVS, Walgreens, or Walmart have locations where patients
can check their blood pressure, receive medication prescriptions, and discuss
their health care plan with a pharmacist inside the store.

Urgent Care

            Carolinas HealthCare System Urgent Care located in Fort
Mill, South Carolina offers a wide array of medical services to patients. The
hours of operation for this Urgent Care is from Monday thru Sunday, eight in
the morning to eight at night. This health care facility provides immediate
care for non-life-threatening illness and injury in a friendly, caring and
compassionate environment for all patients. Fort Mill Urgent Care targets
patients of all ages and races, who have an injury or illness that requires
time-sensitive care but is not serious enough to visit an emergency room. They
also offer patients the convenience of checking in online upon arrival and
shorter wait times. This location uses social media as a marketing technique.
The social media platforms used are YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
Although this health care organization is utilizing many various platforms to
attract potential patients, they must consider individuals of all ages. To
better reach the target demographic they need to broaden the marketing
techniques to reach more than generations X and Y. The baby boomer generation
is more traditional when it comes to marketing. Fort Mill Urgent Care can
analyze different marketing techniques such as advertisements via magazines and
newspapers. Baby boomers are also drawn to picking health care by using
brochures or word of mouth.

Retail Clinic

            One retail clinic that is offered is Minute Clinic, which
is located at CVS Pharmacy in Fort Mill, South Carolina. Minute clinic patients
can be seen for illnesses, injuries, screenings/monitoring, conditions, and
even physical examinations. Other services may include vaccinations, travel
health, and injections. The demographic targeted by the CVS Pharmacy minute
clinic are both male and female, all ages and races. Since the Minute clinic is
located at the neighborhood pharmacy, patients receive the easy convenience of
a quick walk-in service. The Minute clinic is appealing to patients, simply
because of the accessibility and the hours of operation. The health care
facility is open seven days a week and offers evening hours which is ideal for
patients to avoid missing work or school. These walk-in clinics have numerous
marketing techniques from television commercials, newspaper ads, and magazines.
Due to these ideal marketing strategies, CVS Minute clinic is doing well to
reach their entire target demographic. By utilizing social media avenues such
as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, the Minute clinic is reached by both
generation X and Y.

No Appointment Physician’s Office

            Shiland Family Medicine, a part of Carolinas HealthCare System,
located in Fort Mill, South Carolina provides a wide range of primary and
family care, along with health care services from minor to major injuries and
more. Shiland’s target demographic is not specific, they service all ages and
races. The health care facility is open on Monday to Thursday from seven in the
morning to eight at night, Friday from eight in the morning to five in the
evening, and Saturday from nine in the morning to four in the afternoon.
Shiland offers medical care for no appointment services, as well as by
appointment. This health care organization reaches all their target demographic
by advertising via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and newspaper advertisements.
Additionally, the health care providers use platforms that allow them to personally
reach people in York County by having booths at vendor events. While attending
these vendor events, organizational members hand out marketing materials to individuals
that may show interest in taking control of their health care plan. This could
be a strong, effective marketing strategy to reach the target demographic at
vendor events and health fairs, where they are able to inform potential
patients on new health care information and keep them updated with the latest
medical technology. An interactive event is one of the best methods to market
your health care organization, a consumer may use a product or see a familiar
brand and automatically think about that specific health care facility. As a
result, he/she may consider reaching out and scheduling an appointment to
receive medical care from that physician’s office.

Marketing Techniques & Effectiveness

            Although the approach of these health care facilities is
simple and honest, measuring the effectiveness of their approach is not simple.
The goal of any marketing strategy is to obtain and retain. Gaining the
attention of the consumer is always priority and retaining the patronage of the
consumer is the desired outcome. To obtain this outcome you need a strategic
framework for conceptualizing, designing, and scaling efforts, so that both the
target audience and the short-term/long-term goals of the organization are met.
Patients are now in complete control of their health care plan, health care
information, and how it is obtained. It is critically important for the three
health access options to make sure they are providing medical related content that
is accurate and credible for all potential patients. It’s evident that changes
are being made daily because of this, the internet has changed the landscape of
marketing. Utilizing outlets such as email marketing, social media and
traditional advertising such as television, radio, and print are still viable
in the marketing strategies. All three health care facilities discussed Fort
Mill Urgent Care, CVS Minute Clinic, and Shiland Family Medicine have utilized
these strategies to obtain their target demographic. By using these outlets,
they have widened their reach and influence in their targeted demographic
consumer base. One key conceptual point that only Shiland is utilizing would be
community outreach programs. Community outreach programs can be an effective way
to communicate or share health care information with those living in local
areas. 

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