Strategic Issues/Trends

How To Market When Your Specialists Are Booked Out

David Marlowe, Principal of Strategic Marketing Concepts

In our new article, David Marlowe, principal, Strategic Marketing Concepts, and Strategic Health Care Marketing Editorial Advisory Board member, shares results from five recent nationwide studies he’s conducted of what consumers consider to be “reasonable” wait times for routine, non-urgent visits. Will this type of information give marketers the hard evidence they need to stand Read More

Health Care Value: Moving Toward Affordable, Sustainable Care Delivery Models

Jane Weber Brubaker

We recently sat down with Priya Bathija, vice president of AHA’s Value Initiative, and Brian Griffin, SHSMD’s senior editorial specialist, to learn about the program, its scope, and its goals. Launched in December 2017, the Value Initiative’s mission is to be a change agent and provide thought leadership to the hospital industry as it moves Read More

AHA’s Value Initiative: Convener and Catalyst for Change

Jane Weber Brubaker

// By Jane Weber Brubaker // At the 2018 SHSMD conference in Seattle, we sat down with Priya Bathija, vice president of AHA’s Value Initiative, and Brian Griffin, SHSMD’s senior editorial specialist, to learn about the program, its scope, and its goals. Launched in December 2017, the Value Initiative’s mission is to be a change Read More

Crisis Communication Planning Is Essential for Health Care Marketers

Paul Wood kicks off UPMC’s Health Care Crisis Communications Summit, August 2018

What if your hospital is suddenly the center of national media attention for all the wrong reasons? What if a catastrophic event occurs and you must respond immediately? Do you know what to do? Do you have a crisis communications plan in place? In our new article, Paul Wood, vice president and chief communications officer Read More

The Three R’s of Using Internal Advertising to Create a Cultural Change in a Health Care Organization: Repetition, Refreshment, and Recognition

Peter Hochstein

Notable Health Care Advertising In a hospital setting, changing employee routines and behaviors can save lives — but the change may call for altering the entire institutional culture. A memo to staff likely won’t work. What will? Signature Healthcare discovered some of the answers, involving an internal advertising campaign that began in 2015 and is Read More

Design Thinking: A Key Competency for Health Care Marketers

Michael Joyce, design specialist with Kaiser Permanente’s Innovation Consultancy

Health care marketers have much to gain by getting up to speed on the concept of design thinking. This approach is becoming increasingly valuable in helping organizations effectively meet patients’ needs and address an array of challenges. With more people living longer and needing to manage chronic conditions, and with the health care model shifting Read More

Length of Stay: An Increasingly Obsolete Metric?

Jessica Farrar, director of strategic planning and decision support, Anne Arundel Medical Center

Length of stay (LOS) is the duration of an inpatient episode of care, calculated from day of admission to day of discharge, and based on the number of nights spent in hospital. By tracking LOS, hospitals seek to improve processes and prevent errors, which ultimately lowers costs. But for Anne Arundel Medical Center, a 350-bed Read More

Is Length of Stay Still a Valid Measure in a Value-Based World?

Althea Fung

// By Althea Fung // At the 2018 SHSMD Connections conference in Seattle, SHSMD convened a series of presentations on value as part of its “Value Initiative.” What does value mean for health care organizations? How can they achieve it? One of the presenters, Jessica Farrar, director of strategic planning and decision support at Anne Read More

Christine Woolsey: Bringing Two Health Systems Together as SCL Health

Christine Woolsey, senior vice president and chief communications and marketing officer, SCL Health

Christine Woolsey began working with SCL Health — then known as Sisters of Charity Leavenworth Health System — as a public relations consultant helping the organization manage issues and communications related to a merger with another health system. In 2010, she joined SCL as senior vice president and chief communications and marketing officer. “At the Read More

Bringing Health Care Marketing and PR Together

Don Stanziano, chief marketing officer for Geisinger

More and more, health care marketing and PR are coming together with a common goal of advancing organizational objectives. Gone are the days when marketing and public relations functions competed for funding, worked in silos, or thought that one side of the house was more creative than the other. Truth is, there’s plenty of creativity to Read More

2019 Trend: Staying Relevant as Consumers Take Health Care into Their Own Hands

Russom-Braden-Smith-Jones; caption: Braden Russom, account planner, Smith & Jones

// By Braden Russom // What drives consumers to look for alternatives to traditional medical care? And how can health care marketers respond? Here, Braden Russom, account planner at Smith & Jones, shares some of the factors contributing to changes in consumer behavior, particularly among millennials, and recommends proactive marketing strategies to stay relevant. 2019 Read More

Marketing & Public Relations: Why Reaching Across the Aisle Works

Don Stanziano, chief marketing officer for Geisinger

// By Wendy Stark Healy // One less silo would be welcome news for any health care organization. More and more, marketing and PR are coming together with a common goal of advancing organizational objectives. In this article, we hear from three marketing and PR leaders who share their perspectives on how the landscape has Read More

The Importance of Defining and Recognizing Clinical Excellence

Miller Coulson Academy of Clinical Excellence at Johns Hopkins

Marketers’ ability to grow market share and promote patient loyalty is intricately and inextricably linked with what actually happens when patients receive treatment. Patients expect clinical expertise as a baseline. It’s the way they are treated that defines the relationship and either forges a bond or drives patients online to report their bad experiences on Read More

Patients Help to Define and Recognize Clinical Excellence at Johns Hopkins

Jane Weber Brubaker

// By Jane Weber Brubaker // Marketers’ ability to grow market share and promote patient loyalty is intricately and inextricably linked with what actually happens when patients receive treatment. Patients expect clinical expertise as a baseline. It’s the way they are treated that defines the relationship and either forges a bond or drives patients online Read More

How Health Care Marketers Can Boost Population Health Efforts

“As health care marketers, we are keenly aware of the rampant changes taking place in our industry — unforeseen mergers and consolidations, aggressive competitors entering the marketplace, pressures to demonstrate measurable ROI, and reorientation from delivering acute or episodic care to managing the health of a population with the goals of improving health and reducing Read More

Ambulatory Pricing: Transform Your Pricing Strategy to Protect and Grow Market Share

Craig Allan Ahrens, managing director at Ankura Consulting

// By Craig Allan Ahrens and Sarah Hull // Hospital systems will be required to publish their chargemaster “list pricing” online by January 1, 2019, with the finalization of the Fiscal Year 2019 Medicare Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) and Long-Term Acute Care Hospital (LTCH) Prospective Payment System Final Rule (CMS-1694-F). Many states have Read More

How Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Handled Unthinkable Human and PR Crisis

This may not be what hospital communicators signed on to deal with, but it can — and did — happen. How would you handle the ensuing human and PR crisis? On September 12, 2017, a Rhode Island man drove up to Lebanon, New Hampshire, and entered the intensive care unit at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, where his mother was recovering from an aneurysm. According to news reports and indictments filed against him, the man asked for some time alone with his mother. Once they were alone, he allegedly pulled out a handgun and shot her four times, killing her.

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Rowing Together: A Collaborative Approach to Promoting Behavior Change

// By Susan Dubuque //  As health care marketers, we are keenly aware of the rampant changes taking place in our industry — unforeseen mergers and consolidations, aggressive competitors entering the marketplace, pressures to demonstrate measurable ROI, and reorientation from delivering acute or episodic care to managing the health of a population with the goals Read More

Consolidated Call Center Dials Up Benefits for LifeBridge Health

Lifebridge Health Logo (square version)

// By Lisa D. Ellis // When a patient experiences a life-threatening emergency at LifeBridge Health in Baltimore, help is summoned through automated notifications from the centralized call center, which sends a message right to members of the response team’s phones. This is one of the many benefits that care teams experience, thanks to LifeBridge’s Read More

NPS and Patient Experience: Focus on What Patients Really Value

NPS score visualization

“What if you and your hospital were measuring patient satisfaction incorrectly?” posits James A. Gardner. “Worse, what if you were focused on improving things that didn’t really matter — and overlooking things that did?” Gardner leads national market and business development efforts for MedTouch, a digital marketing agency serving hospitals and health systems nationally. “In Read More

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