Pitney Bowes Survey: Health Insurance Providers Score High on Trust
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Press release from the issuing company
New research from Pitney Bowes Inc. uncovers the need for health insurance providers to take a closer look at their approaches to billing and claim information to effectively communicate with the various age groups they serve.
While U.S. consumers share some characteristics on how they like to receive communications from their health insurance provider, there are also key generational differences.
Commissioned by Pitney Bowes, the polling firm ORC International surveyed approximately 1,000 U.S. adults regarding their preferences for receiving billing and claim information from their health insurance provider.
Results showed that 46 percent of total respondents want to receive billing and claim information by physical mail. However, more than one-third of consumers polled (38 percent) want to receive health insurance information both physically through mail and digitally by logging into secure online sites. As a result, health insurance providers should employ a multi-channel approach to communications to satisfy all customers.
Interestingly, respondents in the older age brackets are just as interested in multi-channel communications as Americans who are under 35-years-old.
“In today’s healthcare environment, changes in technology and consumer preferences are increasing the complexity of customer communications,” said Christoph Stehmann, president, Pitney Bowes Document Messaging Technologies. “To be successful, health insurance providers need to understand their customer base, make sure messages are clear in statements and bills, and use multi-channel communications to meet the preferences of all age groups.”
When it comes to patient information, protecting data is critical in the healthcare industry. Overall, 82 percent of respondents surveyed said they trust their health insurance provider. Looking across the age groups, seniors (65-year-olds and above) trust their health insurance providers the most at 96 percent. Consumers in the 45 to 54-year-old age bracket trust their provider the least at 77 percent.
While consumer trust is high, the survey showed there is room for improvement when it comes to message clarity in communications. Nearly two-thirds of respondents (63 percent) gave their provider top grades for how clearly they communicate information in statements. However, 37 percent gave average or below average grades.
Looking across the age groups, health insurance providers received the highest grades for clarity in statements from seniors (65 years-old and over) with 75 percent giving an “A” or “B.” Providers received the lowest grades from the 45 to 54 year-old and 55 to 64-year-old age groups with 16 percent of both groups giving a “D” or “F.”
Using simple, easy-to-understand language on statements was the single most important step health insurance providers can take to make their information more clear according to survey respondents (36 percent).
Additional survey highlights include:
These results are based on 1,018 interviews conducted online from May 7-9, 2012 among a demographically representative U.S. sample of adults age 18 and over. The survey was conducted by Online CARAVAN, an omnibus service of ORC International for Pitney Bowes.
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