Will Retailing of Self-Pay Healthcare Help Expand Private Pay Marketplace?

The competition to capture the growing market of elective procedures is increasing rapidly. In spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, some procedures have maintained steady demand. For example, a report states that the global dental market will grow 5.4% during the forecast period of 2019-2025. The approximate value of this market is estimated to exceed $35 billion by 2022. Also, the worldwide market for plastic surgery is expected to rise around $44 billion approximately by 2025.

What is significant in most of these elective procedures is that the majority of the consumers are cash-paying. To tap into this huge market of self-pay customers for elective procedures like dental, cosmetic surgery, obesity, fertility, alternative medicines or wellness, the providers need to provide consumers choices, flexibility, transparency to win them.

What Self-Pay Consumers Want?

Consumers expect transparency, quality and convenience while choosing how to spend time and money like what they get in the retail market. Now, patients also expect the same retail experience in healthcare that ensures delivering quality care, on-demand, easy to buy, and cost savings. So how retailing healthcare can help self-pay elective procedures like cosmetic surgery, dental, fertility treatment, stem cell, weight loss, alternative medicine, wellness retreats, etc? Let’s find out.

Patient Access

As the competition for private-pay patients expands beyond local boundaries, providers have to align their service offerings and a buying experience like the retail industry. The retail, as well as the hospitability industry, has become increasingly transparent and consumers can access these services relatively easily. The healthcare industry continues to resist the retail-like change and hence in the trap of limiting new access channels and creating brand loyalty.

The education and marketing, remote consultation, in-patient experience, and aftercare/continuum of care are still very traditional and have not adopted the new normal of hybrid healthcare options. The brand engagement strategies need to mirror the retail market which integrates online and in-store customer experience. Such retail modeling in healthcare will offer customers benefits such as awareness, perception of quality, cost comparison and friendliness.

Improve Customer Experience

For the retailers, a store used to be the only location where customers visit to buy/sell goods or services. Now, it is just one stage of the whole spectrum of shopping. The retailers have adapted other spectrums like online shopping, shopping networks, television, etc. to survive the competition. Healthcare providers also need to quickly learn this lesson and focus on creating a complete customer experience. So, it is important to make use of innovative technologies to constantly help the consumers by educating, informing and serving them conveniently.

For this purpose, integrating innovative features like direct chat, AI, video calling, online consultation/second opinion, all-inclusive packages, etc. can boost customer experience. Providers should also focus on educating patients as customers about their clinic, doctors, treatment prices, patient reviews, etc. This will help the patients to take decisions after comparing or evaluating all options just like retail shopping.

What do Patients Want?

In the global marketplace of self-pay healthcare for elective procedures, people want access to the services not just to respond to a health emergency. They want to incorporate wellness into their lives and for that; they need access to information that is available on-demand. At the same time, they seek transparent pricing, affordable services, convenient locations and easy appointments. So, the consumers are clear that they want flexibility and convenience and the healthcare providers can offer these by designing retail-like experience.

Expectations of patients are changing the healthcare delivery landscape dramatically. Also, patients choosing the self-pay model are growing as it helps them to seek services on-demand at a fee that meets their budgets. Retailing healthcare matches the concept of the self-pay market for the elective procedures as these procedures are usually not covered. When you retail your healthcare offerings it helps consumers to easily evaluate the options and plan their healthcare decisions.

At PlacidWay, we understand that the size of the self-pay global healthcare marketplace is huge and to tap its potential to the fullest offering consumers with retail healthcare experience is very important. That is why we have developed a global self-pay platform with numerous innovative solutions focusing on retailing healthcare. We can help you to make the best use of consumer behavioral strategies and improve customer experience by our omnichannel AI presence, direct patient-provider communication tools, consumer-centric educational contents, transparent all-inclusive treatment packages, online consultation/second opinion services, etc. that altogether helps in improving patient experience like retail providers.


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