Podcast: episode 68

Aug 06, 2020

Bold but revenue-generating goals amid the pandemic

Bold but revenue-generating goals amid the pandemic Featuring Scott Weber of M Health Fairview

Key Takeaways Scott’s Background: Scott spent 20 years at various agencies working for top brands. After a clinically fine but experientially horrible period of time working through medical treatments and therapies for his wife, he turned his passion for the consumer experience towards providers and payors. His observation of the experience was there was nothing…

Key Takeaways

Scott’s Background:

  • Scott spent 20 years at various agencies working for top brands.
  • After a clinically fine but experientially horrible period of time working through medical treatments and therapies for his wife, he turned his passion for the consumer experience towards providers and payors.
  • His observation of the experience was there was nothing about it that was built for his wife — significant contrast from the large companies he worked for that obsessed over the consumer experience.

Raghu’s background: 

  • Having grown up in a country and a time in a culture where medical care was often part of an intergenerational relationship with your local general practitioner, the systemized medicine and care delivery system in the U.S. was a big surprise.
  • We, as a nation have seemed to have simultaneously industrialized the care process while depersonalizing the experience.
  • He was attracted to and still carries the notion that the strength of the healthcare system can be harnessed by the value of the strength between such a noble calling and we the people.

The Vision for M Health Fairview  

  • M Health Fairview is a relatively new (about a year and a half old) joint venture between the University of Minnesota and Fairview Health Services.
    • While the two had been partnering together in various forms for years, they have never been as closely tied as they are now.
  • When Scott was hired at the point of the joint venture, he got three clear mandates from the CEO and his partner:
    • To launch the M Health Fairview brand and make it meaningful to employees and the market.
    • Get us ready to compete for consumers in a consumer-driven health economy.
    • Design customer experiences that are going to help us attract and keep a disproportionate share of customers.
  • The first thing he did was take 90 days to observe, assess, and collect data.
    • What he saw was that he had a lot of nice, well-intended people but had none of the skills and capabilities that they were going to need to compete in what he calls a modern economy.
      • The modern economy, or consumer economy, right now is on demand. You can get what you want, when you want it, where you want it, how you want it.
      • The original team was not able to make this happen at the speed it would need to happen.
    • He also saw the chasm that he so often found in his consulting, between marketing, design, and IT. So together, they are creating a Customer Integration Studio.
      • A place where they can design and develop new experiences.
      • Experiences are anything that touches the consumer, such as services, content, and conversations.
      • Similar to an Agile Studio: imagine technology sitting with marketers sitting with designers sitting with strategists, etc.
  • They took this solution to the CEO, who then asked, “how will you pay for that”?
    • He assessed the data and saw that none of their activities up until that point were pointing to any priorities for the health systems.
    • So they cut as many of those activities as possible and streamlined the rest, which included downsizing.
    • They then formed a new web of core staff with outsourced relationships with digital development providers.
      • They are now five sprints into a new website.
      • One sprint into a new mobile app going live in the fall.
      • And have completed an automated marketing platform where internal staff can write their own brochures and assets in the correct branded templates and order them on-demand.
  • They realized the need to transition from analog to digital to achieve the desired experience for a large and actively operating organization. Which required three things:
    • Fundamentally raising the digital quotient in the organization from the boardroom to the front line.
    • Recognizing the business and stability around profitable and critical care should be the result of the differentiated experience that they engineer.
    • Creating the infrastructure to make all this happen.

A Shift in Goals

  • At the beginning of 2020, they were clear on a small set of priorities:
    • Two service lines: oncology and neuroscience.
    • Getting our digital front door fixed.
  • That was it. Everything was secondary.
    • We can’t be all things to all people. If you do everything, you’re doing nothing.
  • Today, they have focused their dollars exclusively on the front door and, of course, what needs to happen for COVID-19.
    • They have a pod working on the site.
    • A pod working on the app.
    • And a pod doing the heavy lifting of COVID.
  • COVID-19 manifested the No Normal
  • Three factors tend to triangulate an industry is in transformation:
    • You have technical competency: new ways of delivering care.
    • You have cultural norms: new expectations.
    • Then you have regulation: regulatory authorities coming in and bringing reimbursement parity and reducing some of the barriers.
  • What COVID-19 essentially did for consumers is create a new expectation.
  • Many of the things we were going to implement in a year or two happened now because of COVID-19, so we have accelerated use and technology.
  • The revolution of our IT department has been stunning to watch.
  • The infrastructure changes that had two-year timelines changed to days, weeks, and months.
  • They have figure out how to scale quickly and be less gentle with change than they were in the past.

Virtual Care

  • There’s an underestimation of the pandora’s box we have opened with virtual care because of COVID-19. Health systems must understand that people aren’t going to want to go back to the way things were.
    • A quote from M Health Fairview’s CEO on Scott’s desk reads…” We are not going back to normal.”
    • They will be converting their business to virtual as much as they can to improve convenience and control overhead costs.