Accenture Study: Global Perceptions On Health

I’m at the WHCC 2010 in Washington DC, and I got to sit down with Greg  Parston from the Institute for Health & Public Service Value from Accenture.  They just released the results of their global study – Accenture Citizen Experience Study: Measuring People’s Impressions of Health Care

How do citizens rate the quality of health care in their countries?  How do they view government’s role in supporting – and improving – health and health care?  What actions do individuals consider important to making improvements, and how do they rate government’s performance in supporting these actions?

They looked at Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Singapore, Spain, UK, and the US. 

Some of the takeaways from the survey:

  • People around the world want government to address health disparities – access for people with difficulties and fair and equal access.
  • Accountability is a big issue.
  • Access to information is essential or very important (although only one of the top three actions for government in India).
  • Taking prompt, effective actions to resolve problems or difficulties had the largest gap between expectations and performance…75% rated this as essential or very important with only 26% believing that government performs this well.

But, you can read the study…My value here is the conversation with Greg.  Some of the things we discussed were:

  1. Will the US perceptions and expectations of government shift post-reform?  I hope they do the same survey again in a few years for comparitive purposes.  In the US, 62% (at time of survey) wanted government to improve healthcare but only 41% trusted the government to do a good job. 
  2. Men have a higher regard for US quality than women.  (The US was the only country more focused on cost than quality.) 
  3. The elderly (who have more frequent use) have a higher regard for the quality of the US system than younger people…so, where do the low utilizers form their opinions.
  4. People feel disengaged and are relatively uninformed in the US.  (But, how can this be given all the data that’s out there.  And, if the data was available, would people access it and use it?)  He believes that people are inquisitive and would use it.  The difference between other countries and the US is that there isn’t an integrated system for data.  Consumers would have to go to multiple systems to find data.  [I’m honestly more of a skeptic here in that the engaged people would soak up more data, BUT the people who drive costs today and in the future (e.g., pre-diabetics) who don’t engage today will still fall thru the cracks.]
  5. Today, conditional type data (i.e., diabetes 101) is better in the US than abroad, but localized data (MD 1 has better outcomes than MD 2) is worse.
  6. What would you do if you were the “Chief Experience Officer” at a plan?  He talked about focusing on transparency and pushing data out to the members which would build trust and loyalty.  [The question is how to value this and whether it’s relevant in a group market versus an individual market.]
  7. I told him I’d love to see politicians views (or healthcare workers views) versus the general public.  He said they’ve done some of that research in other areas and generally the issue is that politicians are looking for the short-term wins while the consumers have longer thresholds than we given them credit for.
  8. We talked about generation divides on expectations and technology.  The example he used was around EMRs where in general 58% of MDs expect to adopt the technology in the next 24 months, but it jumps up to 80% if you exclude the senior MDs that were surveyed.  (On the flipside, 65% of patients want MDs to have EMRs.)
  9. We talked about the value of metrics and scorecards and the need to publish this data.  The risk is making sure they stay useful, get used for decision making, and aren’t dropped randomly in the future. 

From the US survey:

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