Healthy Food Initiative Strengthens Hospitals’ Wellness Efforts

by Joan Trezek Imagine a vending machine without soda. Or an electronic board displaying calories and the nutritional value of meals to help diners choose their food. At hospitals participating in the Hospital Healthy Food Initiative launched in 2012 and part of the Partnership for a Healthier America, a program founded in 2010 under the Read More

Smaller Institutions Successfully Compete in Shadow of Pittsburgh Titans

Cheryl Haas

by Cheryl Haas There’s a nasty fight going on in Pittsburgh. Two of the biggest health care names in the service area are spending millions of advertising dol­lars in hopes of landing a knockout punch. UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) and Highmark, traditionally an insurer, have been locked in a long-running feud that has Read More

Six Key Digital Roles Needed in Today’s Marketing Department

by Derek Mabie The online realm is heavily integrated with everyone’s daily life. Society now relies on search engines and web­site functionality to add convenience, control, and precision to completing tasks – whether paying a bill or researching a brand. Today, consumers are searching online before making health-related decisions. The Pew Research Center’s Internet & Read More

It’s Time for Physicians to Own Their Brand

// By Ross K. Goldberg // As sure as Disney, Apple, and Coca-Cola have brand identities, so too does every physician in practice today. The difference is that many physicians don’t know it. Individually or in a group, all physicians have brands. Some have been deliberately developed with an eye on marketplace differentiation, attracting specific Read More

Fast Takes: News & Trend Lines, May 2014

Brands still struggle with Twitter as a marketing tool According to a survey conducted in March by Social Media Marketing University, 45 percent of brands re­port that measuring results and ascertaining an ROI is the biggest challenge when using Twitter for marketing. Other significant challenges are building an audience (42 percent), engagement (37 percent), learning Read More

Physician Onboarding: Four Steps in One Process

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by Nancy Vessell With 40 to 60 new physicians arriving every year to serve an eight-hospital system and its medical group, where 40 people are involved in physician recruitment, onboarding, orientation, and retention, the opportunity for “dropped balls” measures in the tons. That’s according to Jim Zache, vice president of physician recruiting and physician relations Read More

What Happens to Marketing When the Boundaries Between a Medical Institution and an Insurer Blur?

by Peter Hochstein Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, more hospitals may begin offering health insurance, while insurance com­panies may increasingly supply some limited health care services. True, a few organizations, perhaps most notably Kaiser Permanente, have explicitly and extensively offered both health care and health insurance for years. And some health plans offer their Read More

Dedicated Men’s Health Programs Can Reach Reluctant Consumers

by Kris Rusch “When it comes to health,” asserts an article in Harvard Men’s Health Watch, “males are the weaker sex throughout life.” Com­pared with women, men on average have more chronic illnesses, die at higher rates from diseases, and have a lower life expectancy. Men also take more risks with their health. They use Read More

For This Virginia Hospital, Safety Is on the Daily Agenda

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by Nancy Vessell If the marketing director of the 445-bed Winchester (VA) Medical Center needs to track down the hospital’s busy medical directors, he knows where he can find them between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. each day. It’s a sure bet they will be in the Daily Safety Call. So ingrained is this daily Read More

A New Model Attempts to Give Health Care Wings

by Cheryl L. Serra Imagine bringing health care to patients instead of requiring patients to travel to health care. Ernie Clevenger, co-founder and president of CareHere, LLC, did just that. The result? His company has a health care clinic with a retail component, the CareHere Walk-In Clinic and Wellness Store, located in the Nashville International Read More

Centralized Marketing: Building an Effective Structure

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by Nancy Vessell Marketing functions within hospital systems have run the spectrum from fully centralized at the corporate level to mostly autonomous at the local level. But as more hospitals fold themselves into systems, marketing is increasingly shifting toward centralization. “A lot of it is being driven by this crazy world of mergers and acquisitions,” Read More

Fast Takes: News & Trend Lines, March 2014

Workplace programs cut chronic disease costs, but savings from lifestyle change efforts elusive According to a new Rand Corporation study, workplace wellness programs can lower costs for employees with chronic diseases, but components of the programs that encourage adoption of healthier lifestyles may not reduce health care costs or lead to lower net savings. Examining Read More

Hospital Rewards Patients Who Take Care of Themselves

Diane Atwood

by Diane Atwood A man walks out of his doctor’s office with prescriptions to lower his blood pressure and choles­terol. He has been told that if he doesn’t lose at least 25 pounds, stop smoking, and start exercising, he’ll be at great risk for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. The odds of the man accomplishing Read More

Fast Takes: News & Trend Lines, February 2014

Next CEOs may come from outside the industry According to a survey conducted for executive search firm Ferguson Partners, health care executives who were asked to name the top three outside industries likely to produce tomorrow’s health system leaders chose finance, (92 percent), hospitality (55 percent), investment (40 percent), and pharmaceutical (33 percent). Manufacturing, information Read More

Los Angeles Area Hospital Finds Benefit in Event with Worldwide Exposure

by Mark S. Gothberg Why would the City of Hope, a Los Angeles area research and treatment center for cancer, diabetes, and other life-threatening diseases, participate in the 125th Rose Parade on New Year’s Day? For pretty much the same reasons it has been involved in this world-famous parade, held in Pasadena, CA, for the Read More

The Best Way to Be an Effective Storyteller in This Digital Age

by Dan Dunlop The best marketers have always been accomplished storytellers, and that is still the case today. The stories they craft are meaningful and connect with the audience in a manner that meets some fundamental need – educational, informational, emotional, or entertaining. The most effective stories allow the audience members to become part of Read More

KidzStuff: Much More Than Stuff for Children

by Diane Atwood How comfortable would you be clipping the nails of a fidgety two-year-old? This simple task makes many parents fairly anxious and has landed more than one child in the emergency room with a cut or infected nail bed. There had to be a safer and easier-to-use tool than regular nail clippers, thought Read More