HEALTH CARE MARKETING
One of the most important aspects in life is for every other person to have proper and enough access to health care that will ensure he or she remains in a state that allows them to contribute to the wellbeing of the economy of the country. This means that when the health of the citizens in any jurisdiction is neglected, the economy of the person as well as the economy of the state they belong suffers a huge dent. It is necessary that the state as well as the health care sector finds the strategies they need to market its functions within the health care sector. This paper will as such look into the marketing of the health care functions in the United States, so that the persons in the jurisdiction receive equitable health care as is their right.
The North Mississippi Health Services (NMHS) is one of the health care providers in the United States. It boasts of having an integrated health care delivery system, which serves in 24 rural counties in North Mississippi. NMHS has as many as six hospitals, four nursing homes and thirty four clinics. Many of the services are based on the wellness of the patients they receive. When it is very common to have many of the hospitals in the world react to curative measures, the NMHS has focused on the preventive aspect of the health care system (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011).
While the hospitals exist in the business world, it is important to note that the problems that exist in it will affect the hospital and health care in place. It is important as such to know all the marketing research strategies that are in place to meet the problems they face every day. Wild and Diggines (2010) argue that the market research is done for different reasons, besides the problems that are common in every organization in the world. It is very crucial to note that the market research involves a series of process that guide the top management to meet the needs in the organization as defined by the research done within (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011).
The research of the market done does not just happen, as it needs for the management to have clearly defined strategies by which the organization addresses the problems demarcated by the research within. The market research process begins with defining the objective and the problem as identified by the organization. One of the gaps that the North Mississippi Health Services realized is the need for the health care giver to provide the community with the best health care practices, which would reduce the rate at which chronic diseases are reported in North Mississippi. The effort to create a better population in the jurisdiction brought the management to the idea of conducting a survey that would ultimately lead to the realization of a better and healthier community (Wild et al, 2010).
Once the data and the problems have been written down as it is seen by the stakeholders in the community, the next step involves the determination of the research design. This implies that the problem determines the research that would address it exhaustibly. The design has to be one that effectively assists the researcher to obtain the best and most crucial data as needed by the researcher. The design is one of the tools that attack the problem head on, meaning that the method is crucial in the success of this stage. One of the most effective methods to use in the marker research is the focus group. At the same time, one other important issue would be to have a clear idea of the sample from which the information necessary would be collected (Wild et al, 2010).
While research is not possible without its sample, it is not possible to conduct a research without the tool and instruments. Once the tool is determined as described in the second step above, there is need to have the instrument effective for the tool prepared. This implies that the researcher finds questions and materials that would best deal with the type of design chosen. The NMHS would for instance use the questionnaires to address the problem. This is the stage from which the plan to address the problem is executed (Wild, et al, 2010).
Once this is achieved, the researcher gets to the next stage, where the data collection process begins. This is the administrative process of the research. This means that for the NMHS, the research team gets to the community to find out from them their feelings towards the problem they identified in the first stage where brain storming and research on the most pressing problem in the community is defined. Ideally, it is in data collection that the organizations that give health can find out the problems that are in the community regardless of what the organization had earlier defined (Marquis and Huston, 2009).
Analysis and interpretation of the collected data is the next step, such that the data shows the management and the health care givers the extent to which the problem has spread in the community. For instance, in the research done by the NMHS, the problem related to poor health due to diabetes needed solutions as fast as possible; to ensure that the goal of the hospital was met within the time limit they had given the market research (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011). In this step, raw data is brought back to the company, so that the team of health care givers can deal with the information given to them. Many of the organizations like health care facilities will place the data in software that help in quick and precise analysis of the information collected in the field (Marquis and Huston, 2009). This placement of the data in software tools helps the organization to determine the trends in the market as defined by the health care recipients.
The final step in this case is to visualize the data and communicate the results with the necessary authority. Data that is not significantly analyzed is not effective to the organization, no matter how good it is. The research team has to analyze the data and visualize it, so that the organization can easily present it to address the problem defined in the initial stage of research process. One of the most effective ways is to restate the problem in the community and presenting the solutions to the same stakeholders involved in the process (Marquis and Huston, 2009).
Most of the research done in the health care sector is mainly divided into two categories. It is necessary that the researcher gets the internal and the external data. The external public data includes the use of the stakeholders without the organization to find out the problems that affect the society as well as the solutions they feel would address the problems they have defined. As such, in the market research process, the collection of data stage is one of the major stages that would not be complete unless the community and every other external public data were involved. For instance, while the NMHS would think that the community in their jurisdiction would need the services that are curative, the community would prefer to have services that are preventive to address the issues of health that affect them (Marquis and Huston, 2009).
The data collection stage would effectively be completed by using the community as the source from which data comes. The hospital is there mainly to address the issues among the community: this is seen in the initial research process done by the organization. Therefore, this implies that in as much as the organization would want to have their problems addressed, the consumer comes first in the address of the problems given to the organization (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011).
Being the consultant, it is crucial to advise the organization in the best and most effective methods the organization uses to measure the satisfaction of the consumer. According to the NMHS, the patient satisfaction in the hospital’s system shows that there is a 90th percentile since the year 2008. This means that the feedback from the community the hospital serves is positive. Ideally, one of the tools that the hospital could use to measure the satisfaction of the community is the suggestion boxes in the hospital. This is one of the easiest ways by which the community gives their feedback on the services they receive from the hospital (NIST, 2012).
At the same time, the reduction of poor health cases in the community is another measure by which the health care facility gets to survey the extent to which the hospital affects the community especially as concerns the problems shown in the objectives and problem or brain storming stage. The North Mississippi Health Service, according to Press Ganey Associates (PGA), has shown improvement in the health care performance in the community. At the same time, it uses the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and System Survey to find the response from their clients about the services offered in the hospital (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011).
The consumer satisfaction measure according to the Hospital’s Consumer Assessment of the health providers and systems survey allows them to fill reports on the extent to which the hospital addressed the needs they presented to them. For instance, once one of the patients shows up in the hospital or one of the many branches of the hospital with an ailment and does not have enough funds to meet the bill, the medical cover should help settle the bills for the patient. It is important to have the consumer remain loyal and true to the hospital (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011). Ideally, it is indebted to the consumers for the services they give.
It is in this case that the hospital develops the Survey system that would effectively assist the consumer to give their feedback to the health care giver. The strength of the health care provider is in the satisfaction of the consumer, so that the he or she remains true to the hospital from which they receive care. It is therefore necessary that the health providers in the North Mississippi Health Service give the best amenity to the community within which they operate (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011). The survey method, as such according to the needs in the community, is the best in the collection of the results and suggestions from the consumers.
When the hospital or the health care giver does not offer the consumer the needs they expect and require the most immediate reaction by him or her is to find a service provider that measure up to the task they bring to them. Another reason the consumer will leave the health care givers is the insufficiency of facilities and resources they chose to have. When one of the patients goes to the hospital and finds that the health care providers are not as effective as they are in their giving of services, the consumer would choose to leave the hospital to find a health care provider that would offer him all of the services available to the community (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011).
At the same time, the consumer would choose to leave the hospital once the service provider’s staff is rude and is slow in delivering the services from the facility. These are some of the reasons the consumer would leave the service provider they use for another one. It is necessary as such for them to have the consumer satisfied to ensure he remains loyal (NIST, 2012).
The company is therefore entitled to work hard to ensure that the consumer remains faithful to them. This implies that the organization has to keep in touch with the technology in the globe to ensure that they have the best facilities in the jurisdiction in which they operate. Therefore, this implies that the health care giver has to give the best services they can offer to the consumer to ensure they remain loyal to them. In addition, the health care giver has to employ the use of the tools necessary in satisfying him. One of these strategies is giving the best competitive rates in terms of payment to them (Mooi and Sarstedt, 2011). The consumer as such will find that the health care giver is best placed as they consider the needs of the consumer.
An Example of the Market Research Process in Action
Health care is one of the most important aspects of the economy of the country besides the other aspects of life. The consumer is one of the most important aspects of the health care service given by the hospital. The North Mississippi Health Service is one of the health care providing services in the United States that assists in addressing the needs of the community.
The health care giver in this case, the NMHS, needs to have the strategy written that meets the needs of the consumer in all ages and gender. NMHS gives the m the best option by which to address the issues they faced. This means the consumer can get back to the hospital concerning the services they receive from the health care giver. The consumer line is one of the strategies they use to get the community’s feedback.
The results from the data collected in the consumer needs and reports, the NMHS shares the results with the work force as well as the partners, patients and all the stakeholders involved in the strategy of the realization of the hospital’s goals. It is also important to note that a work force that is not motivated is ineffective and inefficient in meeting the needs of the community. The work force has the best ideas when it comes to giving of services to the community. The motivated work force has reason to give the consumer the best services they could have in the health care provision sector.
The North Mississippi Health Service ensures that their employees are satisfied such that they do not offer to the consumer substantial services. It is a priority to the health care provider to care for them. The employee well taken care of by the organization, engages in their work to ensure that the consumer gets the best services they need within the hospital setting. For the sake of the consumer, the health care giver needs to have the best services to offer to the consumer so that the loyalty of the consumer remains with the organization. This way, the hospital records more successes in meeting the needs of the community in their jurisdiction.
Marquis, B. L and Huston, C. J (2009). Leadership roles and management functions in nursing: theory and application. USA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Mooi, E. A and Sarstedt, M (2011). Concise guide to market research: the process, data, and methods using IBM SPSS statistics. USA, Springer.
NIST (2012). Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. North Mississippi Health Care Category. US: Retrieved on 3rd March 2013 from http://www.nist.gov/baldrige/award_recipients/no-ms-health-services_profile.cfm
Wild, J and Diggines, C (2010). Marketing Research. USA, Juta and Company Ltd.