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The Power of Plain English in Healthcare

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, only about 12 percent of Americans have proficient health literacy skills, meaning few people can both understand and use healthcare terminology.


When we consider that low number, it’s easy to see why patients are frustrated and why laws around price transparency are so vital! Healthcare is one of those realities in life that does not discriminate based on how educated someone is, what language they speak, or what their stress level from a diagnosis may be. 

Think through the last time you went to the doctor and had to have them explain a specific procedure, what specific medications mean, or what an acronym stands for. Even when you’ve gone to medical school, there are still terms that you have to look up when they’re not in your specialty. 

As a result, it’s easy to see why the average consumer would be looking for, and need, more transparency around healthcare coverage. 

Then, factor in financial literacy, which is an entirely different discussion as well! 

There are SO MANY factors that go into why plain speak is so important when you’re talking to patients in your call centers. 

But, almost anyone can understand why it makes sense to simplify the process. When you do so, you get from confusion to clarity much faster. You have faster calls with less frustration for all involved. You create confident consumers who know they are using the right product, and you have better metrics all around for your customer service team. 

That’s why we’ve made it a priority for Sensentia products to incorporate native speak, without the lingo, the jargon, the medical codes, and terminologies to make it complicated. Don’t get us wrong - if you know those detailed terminologies, codes, and jargon, we work with that too. But, if someone is looking for information around coverage for an ACL surgery, you can look it up just like that:  “ACL surgery” as well as with more technical, medical terms like “Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction.” 

And, the results that come up are presented in a way that is simple, and straightforward. Our goal is to make it easy for payers, providers, AND patients to get the information they need around healthcare coverage. 

Simple as that. 

As you look for ways to improve your customer service and call center metrics, consider how simplifying the process can help you. Sensentia’s solutions do just that and more! 

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