A study by J.D. Power again ranks Kaiser Permanente  No. 1 in customer satisfaction among health plans in the three-state region that includes Georgia....

A study by J.D. Power again ranks Kaiser Permanente  No. 1 in customer satisfaction among health plans in the three-state region that includes Georgia.

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It’s the sixth straight year Kaiser has topped the rankings in the South Atlantic region, which also covers North Carolina and South Carolina.

The 2015 J.D. Power study measures satisfaction among more than 31,000 members of 134 health plans in 18 regions in the United States. It analyzes six factors: coverage and benefits; provider choice; information and communication; claims processing; cost; and customer service.

Satisfaction is calculated on a 1,000-point scale.

Kaiser’s score of 718 in the South Atlantic region was followed by Aetna (703) and Cigna (690).

“Kaiser Permanente is more than just a health plan—we are also the provider of our members’ health care,” Julie Miller-Phipps, president of Kaiser Permanente of Georgia, said in a statement Friday. “By bringing care and coverage together, we are able to create a medical home for our members. It is reassuring to know that people who choose our health plans are the most satisfied in our region.”

Kaiser has more than 270,000 members in Georgia, centered on the metro Atlanta area. It does not operate in the Carolinas.

J.D. Power, famous for its automobile reviews, said that nationally, overall member satisfaction averages 679, which is a 10 point improvement from 2014.

The increase in satisfaction is driven by improved performance across all factors, most notably in information and communication, said J.D. Power.

“Health plans have come a long way since last year as the focus has shifted toward better serving member needs and building trust,’’ Rick Johnson, senior director of the health care practice at J.D. Power, said in a statement.

“However, there is still a lot of work to do,’’ he added. “Health plans need to take a more customer-centric approach and keep their members engaged through regular communications about programs and services available through their plan. When members perceive their plan as a trusted health partner, there is a positive impact on loyalty and advocacy.”

 


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