Tuesday, June 10, 2008

US Study into consumer attitudes and expectations of health care

I stumbled across an American research study by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions through one of the research blogs I regularly check (Resource Connection).

The blog posted a good summary which led me to seek the Executive Summary:
Deloitte’s 2008 Survey of Health Care Consumers, an online poll of more than 3,000 Americans ages 18-75, provides an important and timely perspective on health care consumerism. The survey assesses consumers’ behaviors, attitudes, and unmet needs related to health, health care and health insurance. It also points to six discrete segments of the overall consumer market, providing a profile of their key characteristics and differences. Each segment presents opportunities and risks for health care industry stakeholders.

The conceptual framework upon which this research is built reflects what they consider to be the five major domains of health care consumer activity:
  1. use of traditional health services from medical professionals and hospitals,
  2. use of alternative and non-conventional approaches to care,
  3. self-directed care,
  4. information seeking and
  5. financing.
It is based on the company's belief that consumers will play a significant and increasingly important role in the U.S. health care system’s efforts to improve quality, reduce errors, increase access to services, reduce unnecessary costs, and promote laws and campaigns that address its issues and challenges.

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