Gamification Ratchets Up Employee Engagement

Jacqueline Fellows, October 23, 2013

On a mission to improve health literacy among its employees as a pathway toward improving health outcomes, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota found a solution that not only engaged them, it turned some into "change prophets."

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota's launch of an educational game to help its employees better understand their health insurance benefits outperformed the health plan's expectations and highlighted a new population that is instrumental in creating a successful internal messaging launch—employee champions.

Matt Marek, vice president of product and consumer experience for BCBS MN, says employee champions are a cross section of workers that have one thing in common.

"They want to make a difference; they want to be a change agent," he says. "They're almost like change prophets. It is a healthy mix of new and more tenured employees, but they're celebrating something they believe in."

The issue that stirred up BCBS MN employees' excitement was increasing health literacy. As documented by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Harvard School of Public Health, there is a significant correlation between health literacy and hospitalizations, ED use, and prescription adherence.

Essentially it boils down to this: the less a patient knows, the more expensive their healthcare is without the benefit of a better outcome.

Jacqueline Fellows

Jacqueline Fellows is a contributing writer at HealthLeaders Media.


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