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Gartner ITxpo: Wave Three of Healthcare Consumer Engagement

At Gartner IT Expo, Jeff Cribbs, VP, Analyst, Gartner, gave a session on the third wave of healthcare consumer engagement.

Harness a new wave of practices and technology to deliver consumer engagement for your healthcare organization: Consumer access and control of health data will fundamentally change the health data economy. In wave three, digital becomes more digital (automation), and humans become more human (conversational interfaces). Use this vision to plan your engagement strategy.

As you add complexity, it becomes more difficult to “juggle” it.  Like juggling, these problems become impossible due to human constraints.

Consumer Engagement feels different from other aspects of healthcare.

There are three different modes in which consumers engage with healthcare today (thing juggling three balls today.

The Generations Model

Generation 1: Wake up, patch up, catch up.

  • It started with insurers becoming aware of the need to improve customer engagement. In other words, they were aware.
  • It continues with starting to patch your various processes and systems.
  • You finalize this generation by hiring the right team and roles who then get the organization moving int he right direction.


Generation 2: Allow your organization to act as one

This means that across all functions, the organization coordinates the experience. This is regardless of the channel or the department.  That’s the aspiration

  • Analytics need to orchestrate these activities.

Think about what digital chronic condition management tools like Virta, Propeller, Joyable, and Omada.  These companies help create a coordinated experience.  Of course, each of these firms looks at a single condition and not at the person level who may have more than one condition.

The next generation here will take a “concierge” approach

Generation 3: Ecosystems act as one

  • Disparate organizations act as one across the life and across systems
  • Example: Amazon echo hears a kid coughing in the night and a parent hears it in another room.
    • But Echo has a skill by the minute clinic which has a connection to Amazon Key which delivers the right medicine to your door in the morning.
  • Example: Kids are most infectious when they are pre-symptomatic
    • What if Echo could understand the cough and what that means like strep, allergy, etc.

Technology required for the generations model

Gen 1:

Consumer: Online education and advice

Healthcare enterprise: Channels and tactical CRM

Gen 2:


Healthcare Enterprise: Consumer Engagement hub. this is integration with key systems, operational CRM, and Analytical CRM.


Gen 3

Consumer: Apple Health and their various kits. Also think of new thinking and regulation on the rights of patients.

Key challenge: What is the busienss model to enable all this record sharing and new apps from it?

Mass Personalization Platform: This is mass personalization across providers, education, justice, payers, housing, etc.   This is a massive challenge with the need for data and process inter-operability.

How to Make Use of These

Recommendation 1: Evaluate the business case for advancing your organization through generations.

Recommendation 2: Use the generations model as a first level sort. It helps to take so many ideas and put it in some logical form. Healthcare portal plays an important role in gen 1 while blockchain is definitely a gen 3 activity.

Recommendation 3: Learn to read the signs and wonders of the next generation.  It helps you to evaluate your technology readiness. When are you ready to use this tool and when is this tool sufficiently mature.

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Michael Porter

Mike Porter leads the Strategic Advisors team for Perficient. He has more than 21 years of experience helping organizations with technology and digital transformation, specifically around solving business problems related to CRM and data.

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