Naming and Identity for New Healthcare Strategies
Highmark is a health and wellness company based in Pittsburgh that serves 33.5 million people across the US with health and dental insurance and vision care. In 2012, Highmark acquired the West Penn Allegheny Hospital network, assembling an integrated care network that included multiple hospitals, outpatient and urgent care facilities and several hundred physician practices.
The complexity of this new entity presented obstacles to understanding for physicians and patients. Furthermore, the Affordable Care Act increased pressure on Highmark and other providers/insurers to make major shifts in their businesses and marketing efforts. We were asked to help Highmark in two critical areas: The identity for the new care delivery network, and insurance product names for the new federal exchange.
After acquiring West Penn Allegheny, Highmark needed to signal its commitment to a transformative, integrated approach to care delivery. Leadership named the new business entity Allegheny Health Network, to preserve the heritage and prestige of the acquired hospital system and to convey an innovative new approach to care delivery. We identified three attributes to drive design and messaging: patient-centricity, teamwork and progressiveness. We developed a graphic system for identifying the network itself and its individual hospitals, centers, and practices. The identity solution provides a strong visual symbol that connects all entities, while enabling multiplicity and fluidity across the system. This work is still in early implementation, and can be found at http://alleghenyhealthnetwork.com
The goal for Highmark’s individual market product portfolio was to be as simple and navigable on Healthcare.gov as possible. This shift from a controlled, Highmark-provided experience to a competitive retail environment required major changes in how Highmark named and marketed products. Our strategy was to name each plan for its defining characteristic – the aspect that would be most identifiable by a consumer. Executed across the portfolio, this approach helped consumers tell one plan from another and showcased Highmark as a partner that provides clarity to customers.
Both projects were received enthusiastically by internal audiences and approved by management. The Allegheny Health Network identity is in the early stages of rollout, and Highmark is well positioned for success on the improved Healthcare.gov site.