Consumers want more help with the hard work of health


Bupa is investing in a range of services to help meet the changing healthcare demands of people at different ages. New research from the UK’s leading private health provider has revealed some key factors that people believe would help them manage and maintain their health and wellbeing. The nationwide survey found a real desire for help in making the day-to-day management of healthcare easier, including improved access to digital healthcare services as well as a call for more support from people over 55 years-old to keep independence later in life.

In today’s increasingly instant culture, the administrative burden associated with managing personal health and wellbeing is felt across the generations: nearly half of respondents (42%) spend over five hours managing and maintaining their health and wellbeing in an average month, with 19% spending more than 15 hours.

Yet with busy and unpredictable lifestyles, investing this time isn’t always easy. It is therefore unsurprising that the use of digital and technology in healthcare has widespread appeal; six in ten (58%) think that being able to access more healthcare services digitally would make the daily management of their health and wellbeing easier.

In addition, over a third (36%) think being given access to more engaging tools (e.g. apps) to help them stay healthy would make the day-to-day management of their health and wellbeing easier. However, only 16% of respondents stated that they currently use digital healthcare services, whereas two thirds (66%) regularly use digital services to manage other areas of their lives such as banking..

Richard Bowden, Managing Director of Bupa UK, comments:

“Understandably people’s needs are changing and they want different things from healthcare. That is why, over the next three years, we will be investing heavily in our products and services to ensure they meet our customers’ needs and help to tackle the UK’s biggest healthcare challenges.”

To help meet people’s individual needs Bupa is:

  • Exploring ways to take healthcare services further into the community following successful initiatives such as creating Bupa dentists in Tesco and Sainsbury’s stores and providing health centres with work-friendly appointments to help keep customers well, and fit their busy lifestyles.
  • Improving connectivity and developing online and digital services to help people access health information such as Bupa Boost. This launched earlier this year and designed to support employers in improving the health and wellbeing of their workforce.
  • Opening a new £2.9 million ‘Superclinic’ in the heart of Canary Wharf’s Crossrail Place development, providing the latest clinical equipment, and offering busy working professionals a one stop shop for their healthcare needs.
  • Growing Bupa’s chain of 39 dental centres, with the ambition of expanding this to 75 by the end of the year. It is also expanding services for people including health insurance and health assessments.

The research also revealed what initiatives the older age group believe would help them stay independent for longer. The reality of what is needed to retain independence later in life really hits home when people reach their 50s. In fact 68% of 55 and overs believe that help from healthcare professionals to live comfortably at home for as long as possible would help them keep their independence later in life, compared to just 41% in the 24-34 age group.

In addition, 59% of 55 and overs think that help with routine tasks (e.g. gardening and housekeeping) would help them keep their independence later in life. This is more important to women than men with 15% more women acknowledging the need for this kind of support with routine tasks (55% and 40% respectively).

Richard Bowden, Managing Director of Bupa UK, continued:

“Bupa is a leader in providing care to older people – whether it’s through care homes, care villages, or assisted living or independent living properties. There’s no one size fits all. The future is about understanding the changing needs of older generations and providing a wider choice and new services. For example our Bupa Admiral Nurses provide support to the increasing number of families of people with dementia helping them to stay living at home for longer. We are also working with local councils, developing intermediate care centres to care for people who no longer need to be in hospital but are too ill to go home yet.”

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