HealtheConnections is the Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO) of Central New York that works with healthcare organizations to deliver actionable information services and solutions that result in healthier people, better care, and efficiencies. This includes free, technologically advanced tools for medical professionals to provide better care to patients, data analysis and aggregation to help community partners advance public health initiatives, and resources for both professional and public health interests.

MPW was asked to:

• Increase number of participants
• Increase healthcare and public community awareness
• Educate healthcare professionals on what HealtheConnections is and understanding the tools available
• Increase usage and data sharing amongst current organizations and participants
• Increase organizational outreach efficiency
• Use the increase in usage to help generate leads

 

Challenge:
HealtheConnections owns a unique space: They are a non-profit organization that works to provide healthcare professionals and community-based partners with potentially life-saving information, and work with, rather than compete against, other RHIOs in the state. Unfortunately, their message of improved healthcare for all seemed to be getting lost, and many did not understand what they do or why they do it. MPW recognized that the organization needed a better way to introduce themselves to the provider population, and identify and break down the barriers to adoption of their technologies.

Approach:
MPW and HealtheConnections pinpointed a number of strengths – the company is progressive and altruistic, with a highly dedicated team, government support, and an incredibly useful set of tools available to its customers at no cost. With over 600 enrolled users at time of proposal, there was already a majority of enrollees in their service area. The obstacles were found in general awareness and understanding. For a variety of reasons, the company found that providers were often disinclined to adopt the new technology. They didn’t know what HealtheConnections was, and in some cases, the idea of “free” actually devalued the perceived usefulness in their eyes. MPW endeavored to come up with a new way to present the company and the information it provides to its target audience.



Recommendations
The strategy for HealtheConnections’ situation was grounded in the fact that people are already using the HIE (Health Information Exchange) and benefiting from it. The plan was focused solely on healthcare professionals, and MPW recommended a combination of targeted media with a widespread, highly visible branding campaign. First, MPW introduced a new style to the HealtheConnections brand, which included an updated color palette and a cast of recognizable illustrated characters. These characters were added to animated television commercials and online videos, depicting vignettes in which the HIE was instrumental in keeping them healthy and making the providers’ jobs a bit easier. The characters were also included in a pay-per-click campaign, a Facebook advertising campaign, and ads included in prominent healthcare publications throughout the company’s Central and Northern New York service area.

Results:
Since January 2017, when the strategy was implemented, HealtheConnections has experienced adoption at a much higher rate, signing up almost 150 new organizations in less than one year. The Community and Provider Engagement team has reported smoother introductions and a more receptive audience among their current and prospective participant base, with happier customers and more engaged users – this allows the team to help them make the most of the resources available to them, and ultimately, help the people of Central New York receive better care. Data usage numbers are skyrocketing, and MPW and HealtheConnections are looking forward to continued success together with new technologies and advancements.