This is based on the idea that health marketing is a strategy that serves to redirect the health organisation to the users of the system, which generates the need for any management act to be oriented towards providing health services from the point of view of those who need them, the patients.
When we talk about marketing, we tend to think that we are referring to models that are competing for the market, in this case the healthcare market. However, if we focus on the healthcare field, we will agree that the main thing is to offer the user what is likely to be demanded by the patient under certain process quality criteria.
This management orientation, therefore:
– Recognises interactions as they are perceived by the patient.
– It perfectly frames both the service and the healthcare product.
– It shows what the user of the system values about each of the health processes required.
If we take a close look at the three concepts mentioned above, it is easy to see that under this consideration the health manager/nurse manager will be able to plan which care processes will generate greater value for the user and thus offer the patient a comprehensive process, the whole range of services that will resolve the entire sphere of needs.
In order to specify each of the aspects we are mentioning we must know:
– The concept of health service
– The content of the health services offered.
– The communication content and management of the user transmission channels.
The concept of health service
In order to configure the health service, we must pay attention to both the internal aspects that make up the functioning of health organisations, as well as the peculiarities of each of the units and services that make them up. Furthermore, it is necessary to understand the state of health of the population, their demand for promotion and prevention activities, health education needs, and of course, the needs for health recovery.
Without these premises, health marketing activities will not be successful. This changes the tendency to think that it is the health institution itself and its governing bodies that know how to provide the health service, in addition to the portfolio of services that it must make available to each patient.
The supply of health services
In providing the services, it is necessary to distinguish between three different types of services to be made available to users:
Starting from the fact that the value of health, and more so in the case of illness or the need to re-establish a previous situation, is the raison d’être of health organisations, the reason generated by a felt need and the need to satisfy it. This means that a user who has a health need, needs to satisfy the restoration, improvement or maintenance of it. However, determining what is essential is sometimes imprecise due to the interpersonal variability itself, that is, the differences in connotations between different people, as well as the differences in specifying the concept of good service.
But the concept of good service implies that any policy and any strategy must consider measures beyond health, i.e. it must include a set of industrial, agricultural, environmental and, of course, educational measures and strategies. These measures are as necessary as the measures to be adopted in the health field itself.
It is the set of services that, added to the essential service, improve the care and each of the health processes. In other words, they add value to the service itself when they are provided together with the essential service.
The additional services are based on
Accessibility. It is accessible, which allows us a simple approach to the process, to contemplate it, to understand it and to take advantage of each one of its characteristics in an autonomous way.
The connection with the organisation. They are the result of communication with the different professionals who make up the health teams. When all parties understand what is being said, and what is being done. Each connection and each link influences the perception of the service and its quality.
The patient’s language. The characteristics of the population and of the patient himself/herself influence the health process made available to them. We ask each of our patients for detailed information in order to determine the health process that we should make available to them. We professionals expect the indications to be fulfilled and this will be possible depending on the characteristics of the patient, both in terms of intellectual level and willingness and desire to comply with the health plan.
The support services for the health process are fundamentally shaped by the communication and image that is transmitted.
Image is the filter through which each person who comes to the health system perceives it, and consequently makes favourable or unfavourable judgements about it.
The image is shaped in two ways:
In an external way, which is configured by the communicative and advertising processes, etc. And that gives an idea of what it is and what we can expect from the health institution.
In an internal way, configured by that which is generated in situ, within the health organisation itself.
The way in which both are perceived will be transcendental for the effectiveness of health care.