At the Las Vegas HLTH (pronounced health) conference, Nomi Health has a message for the industry; Go Fund Yourself. The marketing campaign highlights how healthcare should be more transparent about pricing and allow easy access to high-quality care for all Americans, likening the experience to how retailers serve their customer markets.
Healthcare users forced to navigate through a complex process
In dramatic fashion, Nomi Health has created a marketing campaign called Go Fund Yourself (GFY) with cheeky videos, signage, a huge marquee above the CVS on the Las Vegas Strip where the conference is being held, and the website Gofundyourselfamerica.com. The campaign was produced to show an example of what everyone hates about the U.S. healthcare system, including long wait times, self-funded services not covered by healthcare providers, a complex system for getting care, and confusing pricing schemes.
The GFY marketing campaign brings to light that in 2021 approximately $650 million, or about one-third of all funds from GoFundMe, went to medical campaigns, and 22% of American adults reported making donations to them. “With Go Fund Yourself, we flipped the script on traditional healthcare messaging, which is about as dry as two-week-old bread,” commented Anthony Modano, the chief marketing officer of Nomi Health.
The conference is a great way to bring up a provocative topic among many prominent attendees whose purpose is accelerating healthcare innovation. But it’s not only an initiative for existing healthcare providers; retailers are also trying to get into the act to improve the current system.
Healthcare learns from Retail
Major retailers and healthcare technology companies like Nomi Health want to improve access to high-quality yet affordable healthcare with transparent pricing. If the healthcare industry operated more like a customer-facing retailer, providers would have to radically change how they address patients’ needs, beginning with being transparent about the cost of their services.
Walmart has recognized the need to bring easy access and transparent pricing to quality healthcare for all Americans, especially those in underserved communities. To this end, Walmart Health was launched in 2019 to provide essential health center services for local customers, regardless of insurance status. Last year, Walmart
Healthcare is complex and secretive
Retailers and healthcare leaders agree that the current healthcare system needs an overhaul. “It is generally recognized that the healthcare industry is really the sick care industry. For a variety of historical and political reasons, the incentives within the system have become terribly misaligned over time,” said Edward Bergmark, the founder and former CEO of Optum, the healthcare services wing of United Healthcare, the largest health insurance company in North America. Bergmark believes the misaligned incentives have led to a confusing and byzantine system that is incomprehensible to the majority of users and challenging and time-consuming to navigate even for the most adept. “The GFY media spot pokes the US industrial-healthcare complex straight in the eye and calls for a better way forward. It’s a real conversation starter,” said Bergmark.
“Healthcare’s rampant inflation and Pandora’s box pricing structure are hitting Americans in their wallets, and it’s only getting worse,” observed Mark Newman, the co-founder and CEO of Nomi Health. “The system as a whole needs to press the reset button, and every major player needs to take a hard look at the problem of runaway healthcare costs.” Newman was clear that the industry’s current operation is not sustainable in the long term.
Modano discussed how Nomi Health is taking a page from the retail communications playbook and saying to consumers, “’This healthcare system that you are forced to navigate — it’s really messed up — but it doesn’t have to be that way. We can all do healthcare better, and it starts by having an honest conversation about how awful the current system is for most consumers.” The GFY campaign hopes to break through and open the door to start an honest conversation about the current healthcare system. The GFY campaign also raises money for the Health Well Foundation, helping the underinsured afford critical medical treatments.