2016: what a year

It was an exciting, jam-packed 12 months here at HealthSparq and with the new year officially here, we’re reflecting on what we’ve accomplished with our team, clients and partners, and how we can set our clients and ourselves up for a wonderful 2017. What we know for sure as we look back on 2016 is that without our fantastic team, our terrific partners and all the awesome individuals and companies we get to work with on a daily basis, we wouldn’t be where we are today. For that, we say thank you! Now, on to our reflection.

From our first-ever annual report to the release of several new features and products that bring an even better health care shopping experience to our clients and their members/employees, here’s what 2016 looked like here at HealthSparq:

  1. A full house, and a full health care shopping experience.
    • This year, we joined forces with SpendWell to create a holistic platform that makes us the only company around that can take a user from finding a doctor and comparing pricing on services all the way to purchasing the service online.
    • This move along with other new hires brought our ranks to 210 employees spread across Seattle, Dallas, Portland and remote worksites.
    • In 2017 we’ll continue to move forward on creating a true end-to-end shopping experience for our users – keep an eye out!

  2. How do you know how to help people shop for health care if you don’t know who’s shopping?
    • To answer this question, we published the first-of-its-kind Health Care Shopping Trends Report, giving everyone in the industry and public a look into the behaviors of those who use our tools. By releasing the report, we hoped to inspire health care discussions to focus on people, not patients or consumers.
    • In 2017 we’re taking what we learned from our first report and working to identify ways to make even more of an impact on the industry.

  3. We’ve been moving VERY quickly around here!
    • With thanks to all our clients, partners and team, we were named to Inc’s 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies List at #196 this year.
    • Inc. also placed us at #3 in our home-base of Portland, Oregon and #19 for top health companies nationally. We’re proud to be a hub in the Pacific Northwest that is making waves in health care and we’re looking forward to continuing our momentum in 2017.

  4. We’ve taken a stand.
    • We’re passionate about people and about improving health care. So, we launched #WhatTheHealthCare, and in the process have become completely addicted to social media where real people who experience real issues with health care every day are letting their voices be heard. It’s time for the industry to change and we want to be part of the groundswell of people who demand it.
    • In 2017, we’ll continue to focus on hearing from a diverse set of perspectives on what is wrong with health care, and ultimately start working toward identifying solutions.

  5. We’ve continued to improve our product! This year, we’ve introduced a number of improvements and additions to our tools, based on the needs of our end-users. Highlights include:

Rewards

  • People react to incentives when they shop for anything, so why not include it in the health care shopping experience? We’ve added rewards to our platform, allowing clients to offer their members or employees incentives to make smarter health care choices.

Savings Opportunity Alerts

  • We’ve heard loud and clear that engagement and tool usage continue to be a concern and priority for everyone in health care. One way we’re working to address this is to help our clients start conversations with their members about health care savings opportunities unique to them and guide them to lower-cost providers and services. With Savings Opportunity Alerts, we work with directly with our clients to evaluate claims data and implement an alerting and messaging system that notifies members on ways they can save.

Smarter Keyword Search Experience

  • It’s hard enough to find what you’re looking for in health care, so we’ve taken serious steps to make it easier for anyone in our tools to find what they’re looking for. And, we recognize people learn and express themselves in different ways, even if they are looking for the same end result. Whether it’s because of a pluralization, a misspelling (e.g., allegory test, message therapy), or reasons we can’t even begin to explain (e.g., brain replacement), one thing is very clear: We not only need reliable information, but we also need a way to help people find what they’re looking for. Not only is this a feature in our tools today, but we are continually improving and building upon searches of real users in our tools every day.

We’re eager to begin another busy and exciting year here at HealthSparq. From all of us to all of you, Happy New Year and cheers to an amazing 2017!

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