Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Elective Surgery?

Charles Halliman went searching for a definition of elective medical services – like surgery. He’s a good researcher: he’s written and spoken about Business Intelligence for the medical community for more than a decade.

He discovered the job wasn’t quite as straightforward as the Healthcare Special Interest Group (or I) imagined.

“My research,” he says, “focused on how experts described bariatric surgery (for example), with respect to the word ‘elective.’ I wanted to see how often the word ‘choice’ was used in conjunction with the surgery. I didn’t find the word ‘choice’ very often. I found the words ‘necessary’ and ‘urgent’ more often. And I felt that saying that a patient can make a ‘choice’ to have the surgery may be misleading since strict criteria are used to decide when to do the surgery.”

Elective medical procedures aren’t life-threatening. They’re not always considered cosmetic, either.

Instead, an elective medical procedure can improve a sufferer’s quality of life. Bariatric services are just one field of “elective” practice that leads to better life quality. So are certain gynecological services (like pelvic reconstruction) – an area I’ve never considered and shame on me.

You and I are going to find out more about how these quality-of-life options are marketed on Wednesday June 20, 2007.

A specializing physician (Dr. Ginger Cathey, MD, FACOG) and a pair of highly skilled marketing professionals (Mary Beth Robinson and Kimberly Taylor) will present “Marketing Elective Medical Services” at a special lunch-time event.

Elective medical procedures involve complex issues like patient need, motivation, and awareness, not to mention insurance and financial constraints. Marketing these so-called “electives” is sometimes very tricky. We’re not talking botox injections here.

We’ve been promised some case studies about marketing tactics plus the importance of physician communication to grow the practice.

So if you’re a marketer from any Houston-area healthcare organization, or you have healthcare-related clients for your advertising, PR or design practice, get the details and register on line here.

Your reminder’s right there on the clipboard. The place is the Hilton Houston Plaza, 6633 Travis Street in the Medical Center. (I’ll probably take the train.) The marketing event has been put together by the American Marketing Association chapter’s Healthcare SIG. We’ll start at 11.30AM on the dot.

You can choose to miss out on a presentation that may improve the quality of your skills. Or elect to come to the luncheon and learn something necessary, even urgent.

Tuesday thank-yours to Prism Design, Inc., Medical Journal Houston and XL Films for the extra support.

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