Marketing Call to Action: Focus on Primary Care, Build Identity, and Align with Specialists

February 1, 2014

by Michele von Dambrowski

Michele von Dambrowski“The big bad wolf is accountable care and it makes … your primary care practices more important than they ever have been in the past,” points out Phyllis Marino, vice president of integrated marketing for University Hospitals in Cleveland.

“The bottom line for us as marketers,” Marino told attendees of the annual conference of the Society for Healthcare Strategy & Market Development held last fall, “is that primary care should be a major priority as we move away from fee-for-service to accountable care programs.”

Consumers, she notes, now have more access points than office visits or, in critical cases, emergency rooms. “Today, we are seeing a plethora of urgent care centers because people want convenience,” she says. People also can get care at home, literally or online. There are even medical kiosks, whereby people can swipe their credit cards, enter into a small booth equipped with various common instruments, such as a blood-pressure cuff and an otoscope, and have an interactive video visit with a doctor.

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