As society begins to open back up again, we wanted to know your thoughts on health care and what you personally need to live fully. So together with QuestDirect™—a service from Quest Diagnostics® that makes it easy to buy lab tests online for at-home or in-person collection without visiting a doctor first—we asked Well+Good readers in a survey, and over 1,400 of you responded.
And you had a lot to say. The biggest overarching request across the board? Flexibility. For example, a whopping 87 percent of folks want a physician with versatile scheduling (aka, a feature that works for your lifestyle). Many respondents expressed a desire to take health care into their own hands—including direct-to-consumer testing, easy-to-digest lab results, and virtual options—as a means to close the wellness gap.
So, what exactly is the good news around this realization? Change is already afoot, thanks to services like QuestDirect™ (which provides lab tests for purchase online while including physician oversight and access)—and the demand for more inclusive and individualized care is clear. Check out our key takeaways below, and download the full report for comprehensive thoughts on the future of health care.
Here's how 1,400 Well+Good readers *really* feel about health-care services—and how they can change for the better.
1. You're more stressed—but less connected to your doctors—than ever before
Since 2020, health concerns continued to rise—from mental health (31 percent of you report increased depression) and anxiety (54 percent report increased anxiety) to sleep disruption (41 percent have experienced sleep changes) and feelings of isolation (40 percent feel more lonely)—while access to support for these concerns has dramatically decreased.
A quarter of respondents haven’t had a physical with a primary care practitioner in over two years.
That's because 55 percent of respondents reported having to cancel or postpone a medical visit due to the pandemic. One-third of readers said that timely access to a health-care provider would improve their experience and ability to get the support they need. The rise in wellness needs spills into preventative care, too, with a quarter of respondents noting they haven’t had a physical with a primary care practitioner in over two years. Whether it’s delayed access to health care, fears of contracting the virus (or other illnesses), or simply long wait times for an appointment, people are missing out.
2. You want and need more personalized care
It's not just access to appointments that you want—you also want more control over your health-care journey overall. What does that look like? Short answer: Medical care that's unique to *you.*
A deeper dialogue between patient and physician allows for trust, and ultimately encourages people to keep up with regular care—and 76 percent of respondents asked for more on-demand appointments to do just that. Considering the call for more flexible scheduling options, it’s no surprise that 88 percent of survey takers want access to personalized data so they can feel empowered (and encouraged) to make choices based on their own agency.
One way to get personalized intel? QuestDirect™'s Comprehensive Health Profile, which tests heart, kidney, and bone health, plus evaluates diabetes risk and other health factors (with an optional women's add on for thyroid function screening) by assessing more than 100 health-related data points. Just select and pay for your test online, fill out a health risk assessment, and set up an appointment (often same or next day) for your test. Psst: 38 percent of respondents want a clearer picture of their lab results and how that may translate into their well-being—and with the Comprehensive Health Profile, you can help satisfy that ask via a one-on-one discussion with a doctor to review your results upon request (and get direct access to your results and assessments).
3. You see telehealth and increased access to lab testing as *key* to the future
Out: Long wait lines and hard-to-make testing appointments. In: Telehealth. Telehealth can help fill in access gaps and meet increasing requests for on-demand care, with patient portals allowing for a direct dialogue between patient and provider to create an environment that’s safe and easy to understand. Over 60 percent of respondents agreed that boosting availability for virtual visits would have a direct effect on their wellness journeys (and 93 percent said they'd consider using virtual visits for primary care, to boot).
In short, access is the answer. When it comes to testing, 86 percent of you reported that you'd opt for at-home lab testing for ailments if available. QuestDirect™ offers several tests for at-home collection in addition to convenient in-person testing appointments (with 2,200 testing centers nation-wide).
Yep, major shifts are already taking shape in health care, and the industry is evolving to meet your wellness needs. See even more about the current state—and future of!—health care right here.
Top photo: Getty Images/Luis Alvarez and Well+Good Creative
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