How to provide seamless healthcare virtual assistants, mobile message centers and live chat

Learn about healthcare member app messaging capabilities – an area ripe for digital innovation and improvement

With patients monitoring their coverage and benefits even more closely throughout the pandemic, we offer a focused study on member app messaging capabilities, healthcare virtual assistants, and live chat. This study reveals best practices, including:

  • Offer secure message forms that enable multiple inquiry types with clear response timelines
  • Make sure members do not overlook messaging capabilities by making them easily findable and promoted
  • Automate simple servicing requests with healthcare virtual assistants or chatbots

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced insurers to shift business to a more digital-centric model. Online communication between members and insurers is increasingly key, as people are monitoring their health and insurance plans more closely. Further, with the addition of COVID-19 benefits and services, members must learn to navigate additional elements of the already complex world of health insurance.

This Health Plan Monitor Briefing covers member app messaging capabilities, which is an area ripe for digital innovation amid the continued increase in mobile device usage nationwide. We evaluate in-app messaging capabilities across 14 firms in our coverage group.

We evaluate how health insurers enable members to reach out to customer service representatives and healthcare professionals outside of the third-party telehealth experience. First, we looked at each communication tool and its purpose.

While some tools focus on providing members with coverage-, benefit- or plan-related assistance, others provide more care-based solutions. We also noted how effectively firms responded to our inquiries. In addition, we examined the organization, location and effectiveness of the communication channels, including with healthcare virtual assistants. We assessed resources available to all members, not buy-in resources available only to a select group of members.

One key area of focus in this Briefing is healthcare virtual assistants, which can support members with more automated tasks, including triaging care, finding in-network providers and viewing plan balances.

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