COVID Has Lingering Effects For Providers and Consumers

September 17, 2020

Daniel Fell, senior strategist, Optum

“The repercussions of consumers putting off both routine and essential care (most likely a result of both the voluntary shutdown of elective procedures around the country by many health systems as well as growing concerns over being exposed to the virus) are significant,” says Daniel Fell of Optum.

“From both a public health and a financial perspective, hospitals — and in particular those that have lost significant revenues as a result of deferred procedures — will feel the effects for months to come.”

Here’s an excerpt from Fell’s new article:

Even for hospitals that haven’t (or haven’t yet) seen a significant number of COVID patients, a combination of shutdowns, spread of the virus across the country, and a general perception by many consumers that hospitals and medical facilities are potentially high-risk areas, has the potential to leave lasting damage.

Many operate on very thin margins during normal times and the increased exposure to additional or mounting financial losses could impact both mission and sustainability.

Having completed our sixth wave of the Optum Consumer Pulse Survey since our biweekly tracking study first launched the week of May 4, we are beginning to understand how different consumer groups think about health care services today, and the survey also sheds light on how this may impact providers in certain regions.

We are better able to identify their perceptions regarding certain service lines and various care settings (physician offices, free-standing medical centers, urgent care centers, hospitals) as well as the degree to which these perceptions are shifting (or not), and how rapidly.

Read the full story now for some key learnings from the survey: Consumer Sentiment Evolving with COVID Spread

Best regards,
Matt Humphrey

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