Case Study

How a major health provider is putting care into patients’ hands

The future of health care is digitally enabled, always accessible and powered by the people who need it most.

The better the question

How does a health care system fit into the palm of your hand?

Transformed patient apps give new meaning to the term “health screen."


For most of us, our bodies don’t simply take care of themselves. We need access to health care professionals and their supporting systems. But maintaining routine care within the context of large, complex organizations can be daunting, not to mention time-consuming. When health concerns demand multiple steps — pulling time away from work, family and personal pursuits — it’s easy to let routine care slip. For those with chronic conditions, benign neglect can lead to bigger and more costly health problems, increasing the collective burden for patients, care providers and health care organizations. 

Patients and health care organizations are embracing and benefiting from the accessibility, speed and convenience of digital care. Online patient portals offer direct communication with care providers, visibility into test results and scheduling services — from one-stop online applications to virtual appointments and automated advice. Today’s digitally enabled health care extends far beyond task management to more meaningful aspects of health care.

Patient-centered digital care is the future of holistic health care delivery.

A major integrated health care provider wanted to make it easier for its more than 10 million consumers to directly access and navigate its systems, using more proactive communications and an enhanced user experience to give patients greater control over their day-to-day care. The organization selected EY Consulting teams to reimagine its patient-centered, digitally enabled and hyper-connected health care ecosystem as a way to offer flexible, accessible care delivery models that seamlessly integrate physical, virtual and at-home care

The new, high-impact offerings would be targeted to patients with chronic, manageable conditions. Company leaders identified several chronic conditions that were unduly straining the system and impacting approximately 20% of the organization’s annual operating expenses. The ask to the EY teams was to build a platform that could provide targeted guidance to help patients take positive action for their health every day.


The project called for an accelerated digital transformation with measurable outcomes and results. The primary objectives were stabilizing existing technology; reducing legacy website and mobile application crash rates; creating new, condition-specific mobile applications built on a single scalable platform; and enhancing patients’ online journeys in the service of more effective care.


“Patient-centered digital care is the future of holistic health delivery. Health care needs to be flexible, accessible and seamlessly integrated,” said Yele Aluko, EY Americas Chief Medical Officer. “A digitally enabled approach, enhanced by AI capabilities, empowers patients to participate more effectively with providers on their health care journey. Integrated digital platforms offer more efficient chronic-care management and will ultimately lower health care costs and provide a better consumer experience.”

The better the answer

An enhanced customer experience benefits patients and providers

Digitally enabled features improve access, helping patients manage their care and saving costs for health organizations.


Most large health systems offer a web-based patient service portal. But for this leading provider, its digital access overhaul was an enterprise-wide game changer. The objective was to reinvent its online gateway to health care access: a web-based digital application suite with automated customization for individual patients, connecting them across the health ecosystem to integrate virtual and physical appointments, chronic condition management and personalized health reminders and suggestions. 


The EY team’s vision was to help drive the health care organization’s digital strategy from a project-based operating model to a product-based operating model, creating a broader virtual care experience that exceeds typical user expectations of telehealth. The result is a unified, reliable, go-to source for virtually all aspects of patient care, as well as new features that facilitate direct outreach to promote personal health management. The new technology architecture allows for long-term scalability and flexibility, which were top priorities for this national health care provider.


Working in close collaboration with the organization’s chief digital officer, EY practitioners developed applications implementing artificial intelligence (AI) features for the monitoring and suggested management of specific conditions. The new apps send reminders to individual patients in real time based on privately uploaded data. 

The integrated health care provider is setting a new baseline for integrated health care through digital accessibility, functionality and reliability.

Ease of access and use was critical, so a content management platform automatically customizes and personalizes communications for the individual user. Patients land on a clearly configured screen that is unique to them. They can see notifications and alerts, as well as find additional automated guidance around relevant health topics — from basics such as nutrition and recipes, to exercise recommendations, health tips and the latest credible articles. All information is secured and protected within the application.

As the new AI-fueled technology unfolded, the EY teams were assisting the health care provider in rolling out these new apps to patients with common manageable chronic conditions that require consistent maintenance and care.

Other functions that have been improved through the digital overhaul include employees’ ability to gain access to various locations; patients’ ability to receive care in multiple facilities; and a more efficient process for scheduling virtual appointments.

The legacy application crash rate has been reduced by
due to a stabilized back-end technology architecture.

Behind the screens, the EY teams shored up significant weaknesses in the client’s legacy technology architecture, which were causing frequent errors in existing web and mobile experiences and were a point of frustration for patients. EY Technology practitioners designed and ran rigorous, repeatable processes to address code that was faulty or unnecessary, resulting in a more stable online platform.

The better the world works

Easier access, healthier patients, better outcomes

For major health care organizations, success is all in the application.


The newly reimagined digital approach is already providing value for this leading integrated health care provider.

Legacy application user ratings have jumped
boosting the organization’s public image .

Multiple novel condition-management applications were launched in just three months, and some 400 patients with chronic conditions have successfully accessed and utilized the apps, according to analytics and anecdotal feedback. Thanks to the application foundation’s built-in scalability and flexibility, the integrated health care provider is expected to launch additional condition-management features in the coming months.​


To help drive these emerging products for patients, a new process for end-to-end IT systems testing has stabilized the back-end technology architecture of the client’s legacy application, improving overall functionality and slashing the crash rate by 50%. Overall user feedback ratings have increased 26%, boosting the health organization’s public image and usability of the app.


Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the health care provider’s virtual physician appointments have increased from 16% pre-COVID-19 to 45% in December 2022. And, the smoother digital user experience created by the EY teams is expected to raise that number to 65% in the next six to nine months. Patients’ total (non-consecutive) time spent on actions required between scheduling an appointment and completing the visit has been reduced from 12 hours for an in-person appointment to just two hours for a virtual appointment, reducing time and cost for both patients and providers.


The digital upgrade investment also has opened new accessibility to the health system’s facilities in multiple states for both providers and patients, creating a seamless experience across the national network. 


“Any entity that plays in and around the health care ecosystem now has a huge opportunity to develop and deliver patient-centered digitally enhanced care models.  While achieving that reality will require new ways of collaborating and innovating, with tools such as enhanced AI capabilities, the outcomes will ultimately yield a healthier and more equitable future for all,” said Susan Garfield, EY Chief Public Health Officer.


By bringing better digital accessibility, functionality, reliability and condition-based customization, this provider has established a new baseline for integrated health care.


We don’t just want to reimagine the health sector — we want to help rebuild it.

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