In the latest episode of the Bikin’ Brokers podcast, Chris Merrill and Miles Romney discuss the future of onsite healthcare with friends from Marathon Health. Marathon Health partners with employers to make healthcare work better for their employees. Powered by care that’s convenient and easy to access, that goes further by offering a fundamentally different experience focused on wellness before, during, and after a visit. Delivering lower costs, improved outcomes, and better health. These outcomes are achieved through their administration of onsite clinics, Marathon Health network (near-site clinics), Marathon Health anywhere (telephonic), and hybrid solutions.
Barriers of Onsite Healthcare Model
While onsite healthcare models definitely have their place and can be very effective, they are not right for every company. There are a few barriers to onsite healthcare models. These include cost: knowing you have to cover all costs involved in opening an onsite center. Another thing to think about is space. Do you have enough available space? Do you want to use that space for a healthcare facility or will you need it for current or future workspaces? Onsite healthcare facilities also need to be staffed, managed, and run. It’s helpful to think through all of these things when deciding on the best option. The future of onsite healthcare is largely based on the size of a company and its needs.
Near-site Healthcare Model
The first near-site healthcare network model Marathon created was in Indianapolis in 2013, near their headquarters. They started with five centers. They own and operate the lease and fully manage them. They also manage capacity, have a reporting utilization, and track outcomes with different employers. Part of running a successful near-site healthcare center is knowing which companies people are coming from and knowing what their insurance plans are.
They found after starting their first five centers in Indianapolis that it was very effective. Having so many access points in a metro area was key. They found there was a higher spouse and dependent participation at the centers. It was also vitally important that they offer the exact same services at all five locations.
Benefits of the Near-site Model
Access to Healthcare
Access to care is key to success. The near-site model excels in this aspect because there are multiple access points. That means if someone does not necessarily live close to one of the near-site healthcare clinics, they most likely live near one of the other locations in the same metro area.
Hours of Operation
The hours of operation are fully customizable for each near-site healthcare clinic. In Indianapolis, they found that the best hours of operation are 7 am-7 pm on weekdays and 8 am-12 pm on Saturdays. Unlike a normal doctor’s office, they could make the hours of operation fit their client’s needs. They standardized the hours, so they are the same at each location. They have found that this model has driven higher engagement from spouses and dependents. Children 2 years of age and older can be seen at all of the clinics. The costliest people on the plan are often those at home, so to see higher engagement from them is important.
Scope of Healthcare Services
All of the healthcare near-site centers operate on an MD-led model. There is a 2:1 staffing ratio. All of the near-site centers have onsite labs and medication dispensing. They also have care navigation services, which means employees can find out their best care options. Each clinic also offers behavioral coaching and mental health services. Diagnostic testing is also available. The neat thing about the near-site model is the scope of options employers can provide while getting them subsidized because the entire group of employers is using it.
For many employers, having an onsite health clinic is a valuable asset, but they are not quite large enough. That’s why Marathon allows employers of all sizes to participate in their near-site clinics. They now have 40+ clients in the Indianapolis area. They have also expanded outside of Indianapolis. They launched in Charlotte in 2016, Cincinnati in 2018, and Columbus in 2020. More metro areas will be opened up soon, with Salt Lake City maybe being one of them.
Marathon Health Anywhere
Marathon health anywhere is the virtual healthcare option. It is essentially your on-site healthcare virtualized. The difference between this and say Teladoc is that these providers have access to your medical history. When you need an appointment, you will be communicating with the same staff every time. It is available 24/7 365 days per year. A great solution for some employers or a way to supplement.
You can get access really quickly. Being able to get in the same day is paramount. At Marathon, they strive to deliver a great experience, while offering prompt service. One specific benefit of this is unrushed appointment time. They have created the rule of no appointment times less than 30 minutes with a provider. They want employees to get the best care possible. That means providers are able to collaborate with the local healthcare market. If they can’t provide all of the care needed, they can direct to specialists in their area.
The future of onsite healthcare is in full motion at Marathon Health and we were thrilled to learn more about it. If you would like more information about Marathon Health, go here. To listen to other episodes of the Bikin’ Brokers podcast, go here. You can learn more about Miles Romney and Chris Merrill at Diversified Insurance here.
Connect with the guests:
Chad Ashcraft, EVP, Growth Officer: LinkedIn
Sara Thuet, Senior Market Development Consultant: LinkedIn
Nate Brzovich, Regional Vice President, Market Development: LinkedIn