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5 Ways That Millennials Do Healthcare Differently

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Mahmoud Abudeif, Jan 30, 2020.

  1. Mahmoud Abudeif

    Mahmoud Abudeif Golden Member

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    Countless studies reveal how millennials are starkly different from older generations concerning how they work, spend their leisure time and more. It’s not surprising, then, that they also have different attitudes about health care.

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    Here are five ways healthcare professionals can be mindful as they interact with millennials.

    1. They Don’t Always Get Primary Care Physicians

    Evidence from the millennial generation indicates that having a primary care physician is not essential for many people in that age group. In contrast, older generations often had bonds with their primary care physicians that lasted for years, through multiple generations of family members.

    Millennials don’t want to wait for several days to get seen. Plus, some dislike how the pricing for a visit to the primary care physician is often unclear and may remain so until they receive their bills weeks later. Millennials frequently meet their needs with urgent care clinics or health facilities that operate inside retail stores.

    2. They Don’t Always See Mental Health as a Taboo Topic

    Many people from older generations kept quiet while going through mental health struggles. They believed society expected them to get on with life and not disclose these issues. The millennial generation helped changed that. They’re more willing to talk about mental health and have discussions with people they know about seeking counseling or other types of treatment.

    That doesn’t mean all millennials talk about their mental health and focus on it as much as physical well-being. However, they’re less likely to keep others in the dark about their difficulties compared to older people.

    3. They’re Less Likely to Have Insurance

    A study from the Transamerica Center for Health Studies that looked at millennials’ attitudes towards health showed they are less likely than baby boomers or the Gen Z generation to have health insurance. That research also found that affordability was a major factor in why they remained uninsured. However, dissatisfaction with the quality of their health care also came into play.

    Those trends can also impact other types of coverage, such as life insurance. Millennials may think they’re too young to start thinking about these plans, or they may not know how to get started. They may not realize that coverage could be very affordable for them, especially since age is something that helps determine the overall price someone pays.

    4. They’re More on Board With Telemedicine

    Not long ago, being seen by a doctor meant getting in the car and driving to the office, plus spending minutes or hours in a waiting room. People now have other choices thanks to telemedicine.

    After downloading an app onto a compatible smartphone, they can request appointments and visit with a physician in a matter of minutes from their living rooms or any other convenient location.

    Research indicates that millennials are more likely than other generations to view telemedicine as a key part of their health care. This trend caused more medical school curricula to have modules that teach students about telemedicine and how to navigate this new method of providing care. Additionally, more health organizations are making telemedicine an option for those who want to use it.

    Statistics from Deloitte indicated that 42% of millennials had virtual doctor visits through video feeds, and 68% were willing to give that method a try. In contrast, the poll results from people from all generations showed that 23% had video visits, and 57% were open to doing it in the future. Those findings suggest it’s worthwhile for health organizations to move forward with their telemedicine investments and, particularly, target millennials.

    5. They Don’t See Doctors as the Sole Source for Trustworthy Health Information

    Before the days of widespread internet access for everyday consumers, doctors possessed knowledge that their patients couldn’t easily get without visiting medical libraries. That’s different now, since anyone can do a Google search about their symptoms or conditions and obtain information in seconds.

    Weber Shandwick and KRC Research teamed up to investigate how online health information affects the way people view doctors. It found that millennials are more likely than all other generations in the study to believe the health information they come across on social media is “mostly accurate.” However, another statistic in the study showed that 80% of millennials were somewhat or very concerned about the accuracy of health information on social media.

    There were other conclusions from the study that should worry health professionals, too. When asked if they strongly or somewhat agreed with particular statements, only 49% of millennials said they felt satisfied by information received from their doctors. That’s the lowest percentage of all generations in the study. Also, 55% responded that the information they could get online is as reliable as what their doctors tell them.

    Furthermore, millennials were the most likely group studied to say they trusted their peers more than medical professionals. About 38% of millennials gave that answer.

    Time to Move Away From Past Methods

    This list shows that health care practitioners cannot engage with millennials the same ways they do with other generations. That may mean professionals need to do things like embrace telemedicine or help people recognize non-credible health information on the internet.

    It’s a good idea for doctors to change with the times to better connect with their patients.

    Share your experiences with us in the comments below!

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