HMSA: A Healthy Approach to Customer Communications

By | October 3, 2011

Hawaii Medical Service Association (HMSA), an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a reliable name in Hawaiian health care. Established in 1938, it is the largest and most experienced provider of health care coverage in the state. Over half of Hawaii’s population has chosen HMSA for their coverage.

HMSA’s mission is to provide quality, affordable health plans, employee benefit services, and work site wellness programs. HMSA also offers a variety of programs, services, and support to help improve the health and well-being of its members and community.

In the complex and dynamic world of health care, nothing is more important than high-quality, effective communications about subscriber benefits. Assumpta Rapoza, Director of Enterprise Risk Management for HMSA, clearly understands the importance of ensuring clear communications about benefits for subscribers. Rapoza stated, “Quality communications are essential for
customer satisfaction as well as the retention of a loyal customer base.”

Clear Messaging to Drive Loyalty
With health care on everyone’s agenda, HSMA wanted to effectively communicate the true value of the individual’s health insurance policy. The company decided to create an annual cost savings report that raised the subscriber’s awareness of the actual costs for medical procedures and
medications, the amount covered by HSMA, and the resulting financial benefit.

According to Rapoza, “If the subscriber went to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription, he or she typically didn’t know the actual costs and the HMSA benefit. We wanted an agile solution where we could customize communications based on the specific member profile. We were seeking tools that would enable us to create personalized messaging for each subscriber in the form of an annual summary report.”

Rapoza continued, “We needed to push out the messaging. We knew that we wanted to mail out customized statements. While electronic delivery is a more costefficient way to deliver information, we are cognizant that a high percentage of our membership still prefers paper.”

The Solution
HMSA leveraged Océ’s Technology & Software Support (TSS) Solution Development Manager and Systems Consultant resources, its existing investment in Océ digital print technology, upgrades to its Océ PRISMAproduction® workflow software, as well as the GMC PrintNet Variable Data Composition software to design a solution for its annual benefits summary statement. This combination enabled HMSA to design, compose, produce, present, manage, and automate printed documents with individualized targeted messaging that was HIPPAcompliant. The system design also needed to accommodate production in print and electronic formats, created by PrintNet. Rapoza noted, “The end-result was a customerfriendly communication that clearly articulated the value that HMSA was delivering to its membership.”

To read more articles like this, visit and download the September Newsletter.

Share this post