Health Care Privacy and Reward Programs: What you need to Know!



We all participate in them.  It saves us money, simply by shopping.  Reward cards are offered by many retail businesses – Kroger, Starbucks, and Speedway.  The retailers track your purchases and you earn reward points that can be used to get discounts off of future purchases and you can get advance or special offers.  Sounds like a win-win for consumers and retailers.  You save money.  The retailer builds repeat business and gets insight on customer purchases.


How about introducing the concept to health care?  It is being done.  CVS and Myers grocery have reward programs that give consumers money back on purchases for transferring and filing prescriptions.  Walgreens is taking it a step further with the offer of a smartphone app that allows customers to send their blood glucose and blood pressure readings directly to the pharmacist.  Good idea?  Saves time. Promotes medical monitoring.


The possibilities similar to the Walgreen’s concept are endless: reward programs for dental cleanings, syncing health tracker information for wellness programs, food track app sharing for diabetes and weight loss.  The possibilities go on and on.  But, hold the phone.  It is little more complicated when it comes to health care, because of privacy and marketing.  Here is an outline of the watch-outs.

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The concept of the customer reward programs offers great benefits even for the small providers and health plans.  The key is to do it without going awry of the privacy, security, and market laws.

The watch-outs apply not only to reward programs, but also:

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