5 millennial-driven healthcare trends

Millennials are poised to have a major influence on the direction of healthcare delivery due to their preference for technological innovation and convenient care models, according to a new PNC Healthcare survey.

The survey of 5,000 consumers across age groups found several trends among millennials (ages 21-32) that will drive sweeping changes in healthcare, including:

Word-of-mouth marketing: Almost half of millennials and Generation-Xers (those 33-49) incorporate healthcare providers' online reviews into their shopping process, as do 40 percent of baby boomers and 28 percent of seniors.

Checking insurance information online before a decision: Half of millennials and 52 percent of Gen-Xers looked up insurance information within the last enrollment period, whereas only a quarter of seniors did the same.

More efficient delivery: Thirty-four percent of millennials preferred care at retail clinics, whereas 25 percent preferred acute care clinics, compared to only 17 and 14 percent of boomers, respectively. Millennials were significantly less likely (61 percent) to visit their primary care physician than boomers (80 percent) or seniors (85 percent), according to the survey.

Delayed care: Nearly 80 percent of overall respondents agreed that healthcare costs are both too high and too unpredictable, and more than half of both millennials and Gen-Xers said they had delayed or gone without treatment due to financial concerns, compared to 37 percent of boomers and only 18 percent of seniors.

Preference for upfront estimates: One in five respondents overall called unexpected bills their top healthcare concern; moreover, millennials were most likely to ask for cost information upfront at 41 percent, compared to only 18 percent of seniors and 21 percent of boomers.

"Millennials will overtake boomers as the nation's biggest consumer buying group, shifting the purchasing power," said PNC Senior Vice President Jean Hippert in the survey announcement. "The rules of evolution dictate that those insurers and healthcare providers that survive or thrive will be those that adapt sooner than later to the preferences of this fast-paced, technology-driven generation."

To learn more:
- read the survey announcement