Alegeus Announces Five Predictions for the Consumer-Driven Healthcare Space in 2018
Published on January 10th, 2018
Alegeus, the market leader in consumer directed healthcare (CDH) solutions, today highlighted five trends it believes will be prevalent in 2018 related to the healthcare benefits industry based upon its position in the ecosystem and ongoing conversations with clients, partners and industry influencers.
- It is the year of acceptance with healthcare savings becoming a bigger priority for consumers. People will accept that they are responsible for a larger percentage of their healthcare costs, and much in the way that consumers have realized the importance of saving for retirement, they will begin to better understand the importance of factoring healthcare savings into the overall savings equation. In fact, the 2017 Alegeus Healthcare Consumerism Index reveals that although progress is slow, consumers are becoming more disciplined and value-conscious in healthcare spending and saving decisions. As such, fluency will also increase this year: for example, consumers are beginning to demonstrate higher proficiency when it comes to the differences between health savings accounts (HSAs) and flexible spending accounts (FSAs). This knowledge will ensure that consumers are making the best investment choices possible so that dollars are not left on the table.
- Digital technologies, including virtual assistants and AI, will boost healthcare engagement – moving from answering direct questions to delivering personalized guidance and proactive recommendations. If 2017 was the year of the virtual assistant in healthcare, 2018 will be the year of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Decision support will become an important aspect of the voice channel, increasing consumer education and engagement around benefits by leveraging machine learning and predictive analytics to deliver proactive recommendations.
- The industry will experience continued consolidation as healthcare affordability continues to force innovation. Mergers between health plans, consumer funds, and care delivery systems will integrate and simplify the industry. With better technology and purchasing options, such as the recent CVS and Aetna merger, consumers will be able access information and make purchasing decisions more easily.
- The “Amazon effect” meets healthcare. Existing industry players will work to deliver a fully digital and automated purchasing environment, or new entrants will enter the market to disrupt the legacy model. One example is innovation in homecare, and the ability to order a strep test online, have it shipped to your house, submit results online for diagnosis, and be emailed the results with a prescription included – effectively eliminating any waste within the value chain.
- Affordability will be a key consideration across stakeholders. High deductible health plans, the expansion of HSAs, consumer demand for transparency, and incentives are here to stay. As a result, innovation that drives affordability will be a focus for all in 2018, regardless of the how an individual receives coverage.
Alegeus is the market leader in consumer funding solutions, delivering the industry’s leading white-label platform that transforms how consumers save and pay for healthcare. Our next-generation technology simplifies the administration of healthcare benefit accounts (including FSAs, HSAs, HRAs, wellness incentive, dependent care and commuter accounts) and COBRA, using data-driven insights to guide consumers to the best coverage, cash and care strategies. More than 350 Alegeus clients – including health insurance plans and third-party administrators – leverage our deep expertise and proven technology to administer benefit accounts for more than 30 million members and to process more than $9.1 billion in consumer healthcare payments annually. As the healthcare and benefit markets continue to evolve, Alegeus delivers solutions that enable clients to evolve their service offerings, operate their businesses more efficiently, and lead consumers to better health and financial decisions. The company is headquartered in Waltham, MA with operations in Orlando, FL and Milwaukee, WI.