Population Health Insights

'How Can I Help?' Why We Always Put Patients First


It’s no secret that today’s customer expects excellent service. In the consumer market, companies like Amazon, Nordstrom, and Trader Joe’s set the tone. They intend to exceed customer expectations with every experience. And expectations for exceptional customer support are just as high in the enterprise business market -- yet it also comes with its own set of unique challenges.

At Care Innovations®, we support two distinct populations:

  • Our customers – the people who purchase and use our platform to manage their population
  • The patients – the end-users of our home monitoring solution; the folks we're helping to achieve their health goals.

And in all matters of support for both of these groups, we adopt one key philosophy:  The patient always comes first.

It's a philosophy that always works, in large part because it's a goal that we share with our customers. From providers to payors, from CROs to enterprise partners, the patient always comes first.

This edict also allows us the freedom and flexibility to tailor our support approach in whatever way it's needed. By subscribing to the idea that the patient comes first, we don’t feel encumbered by process, scripting, or by ever having to utter the words, “that’s just not the way we do it around here.”

Instead, we have the privilege of asking, “how can I help?”

'How You Do Anything Is How You Do Everything'

In my role running Operations for Care Innovations, I oversee customer support, manufacturing/assembly and human resources. By definition, it’s my job to think very deeply about people and how they're affected by what we do.

As I built out the operational workflows for our company, the patient was at the forefront of my decision making. The reason? We actually built our company culture around the patient experience (not just customer service). Thinking about the patient first doesn’t just create an awesome support construct; it sets the tone for the way we do most things at Care Innovations.

Because how you do anything is how you do everything.

When I think about how we built a culture around the patient experience, there are a few beacons that stand out. When we started our joint venture in 2011, we asked all of our employees to choose a photograph of a person or people who inspired them to get up and do this type of work every day. Everybody had a story about their chosen person; we framed these faces and now display them prominently in our offices. They're a daily reminder of why we do what we do.

Fostering professional and personal growth internally has been a goal put into action over and over at Care Innovations. During their tenure, nearly all of our employees have had the opportunity to rotate positions and dig into different aspects of our business.

Not only do we believe that this is good for our employees (and therefore good for our company), but, most importantly, it’s good for our patients. Whether an employee takes a role in account management, customer support, sales, regulatory, innovation, clinical, product development, manufacturing, or business development, each provides us with the opportunity to think differently about how we can improve the patient experience. And every time we change our focus, we bring with us everything we've created in our prior positions.

Living Up to Pamela's Expectations

One of the best parts about working at Care Innovations is hearing directly from patients. It’s the cornerstone of building our culture around the patient experience. We've received handwritten notes in returned Health Harmony boxes; we've received voicemails; we've directly spoken with hundreds of patients. We share these experiences at company meetings and in the hallways; we post about them on our intranet site if appropriate; and we take time to discuss them at staff meetings.

One such handwritten note will forever have a place in my heart. Pamela wrote to thank us for helping her in a “dire time of need.” She believed she escaped having to be sent to a rest home and/or being hospitalized because of us, and she finished her note by asking God to bless us. This letter made its way around our California office in short order, landing on our CEO’s desk just a few hours after it was received. He was so touched by it that he added the patient experience to our company core values, and created an annual employee award for the person who best “lives up to Pamela’s expectations.”

I’ve never questioned the choice of building the foundation of our culture around the patient. And neither does our workforce. In an Employee Survey administered earlier this summer, 89% of employees agreed or strongly agreed that the primary reason they work at Care Innovations is because of that mission. Because the patient is at the center of what we do every day, the mission commingles with the day-to-day work, making it relevant and relatable.

And to this day, I firmly believe that even though the patient (i.e., the consumer) doesn't directly purchase our product, placing them at the center of what we do is what makes Care Innovations work … inside and out.

About Laney Preheim
Executive Director of Operations, Care Innovations

laney-preheimFor almost two decades, Laney Preheim has worked at the forefront of managing organizational operations for the development of innovative companies. With extensive experience establishing groundbreaking operational processes and technology products for healthcare-related organizations, Laney is skilled in successfully navigating corporations through periods of accelerated growth, managing change for positive revenue outcomes. Also among her areas of expertise are team collaboration, building relationships, creating and leading employee engagement programs, and driving positive change across global business lines to encourage cohesive, comprehensive business approaches and enhanced profitability.