One of the ways to make sure that business flourished is to make sure that the employees’ welfare is well catered for. Business people owning large firms have to ensure that the workers under their care are in good health at all times, and any injuries and illnesses are looked into thoroughly. This is most commonly done by creating a good working condition in companies, for example in oil factories, the slippery floor is cleaned with hot water every time and workers provided with rubber boots to avoid skidding and slipping which pose danger to people. Incase the damage has been done and someone is injured or taken ill, the employees’ medical care and bills are covered by the insurance companies the employer arranged for his or her workers.
In the US, employers in the business sector offer medical care to their employees, mostly prepaid, through the Health Maintenance Organization that controlled the operation of its doctors. The HMO is very reliable as it offers cheap medical care to the patients and allies with different medical service providers to ensure that patients get the necessary attention and effective treatment. The aim of this paper is to outline the effects of the HMO on the brand loyalty of the end user customer considering the type of medical care and drugs preferred for the patients (Brown, 1994).
The organization gets in contract with physicians who provide medical attention to their members, and who are rewarded if they treat their patients considerably and with affordably. The physicians are hired in large numbers to offer the customers with a variety of choices. There is stiff competition within the organization, with some offering low prices by deciding on high standards incentives in their contracts with physicians. Some doctors offer less attention to some cases and end up utilizing the available resources in treating patients, others consider spending much on their patients for effective results and these are the qualities the HMOs look at when hiring them. These competitions lead to quality, cheap and affordable services for the end-user consumer. Some physicians have shifted from these practices the other according to the needs of the customers and the styles adopted by other doctors. Physicians may also work in groups to share medical facilities, and patient records and understanding.
HMO’s allowance for its members to select one physician creates the relationship between the doctor and the patient, hence making it easy for the doctor to treat their patients because of their well-known medical backgrounds. It also creates patient or customer loyalty as the patients enjoy the services of one doctor whom he trusts. The doctors also find it easy to assess the problems associated with patient resistant to certain treatment, and consider changing the medication. Close examination of a particular patient makes it easy to evaluate the results and know the effectiveness of the treatment used with specific drug prescription. A drug therapy protocol is established by the HMO to allot certain types of drugs and doses for particular age groups as seen fit and this improved the quality of healthcare (Hepler & Segal, 2003).
The services of the HMO in some cases directly influenced the doctors’ approaches to treatment, for instance, their aim to reduce the unnecessary treatment on some cases. Some patients were unlikely to undergo costly surgery if they reported minor cases, and especially in consideration of the age of the patients. At the same time, in certain cases where treatment of a patient with different physicians in various hospitals has yielded nothing, the HMO may step in and assign a doctor for the patient. The doctor then uses a rather different approach to his or her treatment, for example centralizing on a certain symptom first. The treatment approach may be so different from the previous one because the physicians in this case start with the patient’s background, what they have suffered from in the past and how long before. This means that the medical attention here would revisit the past medical records before determining which set of procedures to take.
The Organization could use a number of ways to advertise their services and ensure that they maintain their customers at all times. The first means is through individual patients or customers who would openly speak of the good services they were offered by the organization. Another way is through the groups of physicians, word would easily spread on the HMO’s credibility in providing efficient medical services to the society, especially because of their very affordable medical care. They may also advertise their services through offering educational parades or concerts where they enlighten people on the importance of health and healthcare services. In general, the most effective way of promoting and publicizing their services is by forming the personal relationship with the patients and ensuring that they are treated with the utmost importance and respect (Brown, 1994).
Freestanding or mobile medical centers are another very important part of life especially in the rural areas where availability of medicals services is scarce. They often find it hard to establish a permanent place to put up their clinics and equipment, especially because of the unavailability of ready market, so they find themselves moving from place to place in search of an ideal position. In launching their campaign to market their services, such clinics could use personal health records as the first tool in facilitating their success. Keeping such records will improve the quality of thoroughness in imparting knowledge to patients on health information. It also ensures the portability of customer health records that enable the service providers know the number of patients they have treated at some point and how deep they have penetrated the local people.
Other equipments such as computers should be used to make it easy for recording the patients’ information that is then stored in other computer accessories like CD ROMs and USB flash disk drives which ensure safety of personal information. The records facilitate easy communication between the patients and the medical service providers. Facilities such as physician offices should be put up, functional at all times and ready to serve patients, especially during odd hours, for example working until late at night. Ambulatory services should be available to offer emergency transport services to patients, especially those far away from the health center. This is particularly important in creating the expanse within which the clinic serves or operates. This service would attract the local people when they realize the importance of health facilities brought close to them, for example a case of medical emergency due to an unexpected complication in a woman during a routine traditional childbirth (Wolf, 2006).
Healthcare service is very important but people have neglected the environment they live in. Health organizations such as the HMO have brought a great improvement in the provision of medical services and the awareness of the importance of healthcare. People’s attitude toward healthcare and healthy living has changed for the better and as a result, small health organizations have been formed to help promote the department of health by establishing small clinics in the remote places in many countries. This will probably save and change the lives of many people who never had access to medical facilities.
Brown, M. (1994). Managed care: strategies, networks, and management. HCMR Series. Health Care Management Review Series. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers
Hepler, C. D., & Segal, R. (2003). Preventing medication errors and improving drug therapy outcomes: a management systems approach. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.
Wolf, L. F. (2006). Managed Care: Advances in Financing. Darby, PA: DIANE Publishing