Millennials and Gen Z Driving Demand for Non-​Traditional Health Care

BY Rachel Cagle
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"Unsatisfied with health care’s status quo, millennial and Gen Z consumers in the U.S. are paving the way for non-​traditional care models, such as retail clinics, virtual and digital services, according to results of an Accenture survey."

"The survey of more than 2,000 U.S. consumers found striking differences in satisfaction levels between younger and older health care consumers, just as millennials in the U.S. become the largest living generation and hold the most power to influence future health care models."

"Demanding more than the status quo

When considering traditional in-​person care, millennials (ages 22 to 38 in 2019) were two to three times more likely than baby boomers (ages 55 to 73) to be dissatisfied with: the convenience of appointment times (16% vs. 6%); the location/​channel of care (13% vs. 4%); the effectiveness of the care (12% vs. 4%); and whether the doctor prescribed the medication they expected (10% vs. 5%). Gen Zers (ages 18 to 21) are even unhappier, with 32% dissatisfied with care effectiveness, and 24% dissatisfied with the medication prescribed, the location/​channel of care, cost of treatment and responsiveness to follow-​up questions."

"Shifting to virtual, retail clinics, digital care

Slightly more than half (55%) of Gen Zers and two-​thirds (67%) of millennials said they have a primary care physician, compared with 84% of baby boomers. Without a primary care physician, some millennials are seeking some types of routine medical services from retail clinics (41%) and virtual care (39%)."

"These types of non-​traditional methods of care have made rapid inroads across all age groups in recent years, with the survey finding that nearly one-​third (29%) of respondents have used some form of virtual care, up from 21% in 2017, and almost half (47%) have used a walk-​in/​retail clinic. Further, consumers would prefer non-​traditional methods over traditional ones for certain basic medical needs, including cold/​virus treatment (65% vs. 48%), flu shots (62% vs. 54%) and checking vitals (59% vs. 54%)."

Telemedicine Users' passion for digital doesn't end at health care. According to AudienceSCAN, these consumers have a slew of mobile digital devices at their disposal, including iPhones (50.3%), Android smartphones (41.9%), iPads (42.4%), Android tablets (34.2%) and smartwatches (31.9%). In the past six months, they've used their mobile devices to watch online or streamed videos (63.8%), order food for takeout or delivery (48.6%) and download an app for a product they're considering (42.5%). They're also 286% more likely than other adults to find advertising on their mobile apps useful and, last year, 73.5% took action after either seeing an ad on their mobile smartphone apps or receiving an ad via text.

"Rising adoption of digital self-service

The use of digital for self-​service health care is also on the rise. Half (51%) of all respondents said they use a wearable or mobile app to manage their lifestyle and health care conditions and more than half (53%) use virtual nurses to monitor health conditions, medications and vital signs."

"Similarly, younger generations are more likely to choose medical providers with strong digital capabilities, such as those who provide mobile or online access to test results (44% of millennials vs. 29% of baby boomers), electronic prescription refills (42% vs. 30%), and booking, changing or cancelling appointments online (40% vs. 19%)."

'As more patients take control of their own health care, provider organizations must offer meaningful choices that fulfill the needs of all generational groups,' said Kaveh Safavi, M.D., J.D., head of Accenture’s global Health practice. 'Providers and payers who stay one step ahead of the shifts and deliver what patients are looking for will be the ones to earn loyalty, navigate disruption and be strongly positioned as the future unfolds.'”

Doctors and other medical professionals offering digital health care services can target Telemedicine Users using many forms of advertising. Obviously, digital ads work well. According to AudienceSCAN, last year, these consumers took action after receiving email ads (74.6%), hearing both online and over-​the-​air radio ads (71.7%) and 68.7% clicked on text link ads on websites. Don't overlook traditional ads though. These consumers are 96% more likely than other adults to be driven to action by outdoor ads and, last year, they took action after seeing TV commercials (79.4%) and receiving direct mail ads and coupons (75.9%).

AudienceSCAN data is available for your applications and dashboards through the SalesFuel API. Media companies and agencies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.