HLM: Are you saying that brand loyalty will become more important with consumer-driven care?
Connolly: Brand loyalty is significant and it is something that has been a challenge for healthcare companies. We know from our survey data, that insurers in particular and pharmaceutical companies rate pretty low on the popularity and loyalty scale. Individual doctors do better. But even when you start talking about hospitals there are a lot of mixed feelings by consumers.
Consumers tell us over and over again that they are willing to switch if either they have a bad experience at one place or they find that they can get the same quality care at a lower cost somewhere and one other thing on the convenience. The average diabetic will see their pharmacist perhaps 30 times a year and they will see their doctor three times a year.
You have that ongoing relationship and every time you walk into a pharmacy or a big retail store, you will also probably pick up your test strips and you might pick up some food and do some other shopping and the idea that it is all there is another aspect of the convenience.
Part 2 will be published Wednesday.