3 Takeaways from an interview with Mark Ganz, President and CEO of Cambia Health Solutions

Mark Ganz, President and CEO of Cambia Health Solutions, sat down at the 2019 Health Evolution Summit with NextHealth’s CEO, Eric Grossman, to explain why he believes consumer needs should be a priority and what that means for Cambia and its partners. Below are the top three takeaways from their discussion.

#1: Personalization is key to the evolution of healthcare

How do we put consumers at the center of our efforts to make health care a better, easier to understand experience for each individual? Ganz says that by listening to members and understanding their thoughts and concerns, we can anticipate their needs and engage with them in a meaningful way. Additionally, by using data to analyze their behaviors, triggers, and preferred interactions, “You learn what’s important to them and then you can start following them on their terms.” The most effective way to affect consumer behavior is not by telling people what to do, but by offering them options tailored to their concerns and individual needs.

#2: Health plans must be responsible stewards of consumer data

What good is collecting data if it’s not being utilized to deliver value for the people who shared it in the first place – namely by creating a better member experience? Currently many organizations behave that as if once collected, patients relinquish control of their data. However, health plans should be focusing on identifying strategies to analyze data to enhance each individual’s interaction, reduce costs, and improve outcomes. “We are stewards of their data and everything we do needs to be built around how does that data flow to them and with them when they go on their health journey,” Ganz argues.

#3: Scale and shared vision contributes to the ability to innovate

Collaboration and scale are important levers to keep up with increasing market demands. Cambia recently partnered with Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina in an effort to improve patient experience, affordability, and outcomes. “There’s an alignment of values and vision and we both want to change the world,” said Ganz. “I think what we can do more for consumers together versus what we could do separately.”

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Mark Ganz, President and CEO, Cambia Health Solutions

Mark has been a change agent in the ever-evolving health care community his entire life, and health care system transformation has become his personal passion and professional cause. The son of a Spokane, Washington, physician, Mark spent many childhood afternoons at his father’s family practice learning the importance of service, community and family.

Transforming the way people experience health care is the cornerstone of his vision for the industry and Cambia. Since taking the top post in 2003, he has guided the company along a path of re-imagining and reshaping the health care system to one that is accountable to individuals and families. Mark has led the charge to make the system more affordable, understandable, and economically sustainable. At Cambia, that means nourishing game-changing companies such as HealthSparq, while delivering on the promise built over 95 years as a trusted health plan.

Mark has an extraordinary record of involvement regionally and on the national stage, including as chairman of the board for America’s Health Insurance Plans. Mark also serves on the board of directors for the following organizations: Portland General Electric Company; Oregon Business Council (also executive committee member); Greater Portland Inc, a regional economic development corporation; Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association; University of Portland Board of Regents; Boy Scouts of America-Cascade Pacific Council; Jesuit High School; and The Conversation Project.

In 2013, he was honored with a Governors’ Gold Award for his lifetime contributions to the state of Oregon in the areas of health care, economic development and leadership through community service. Mark’s commitment to community was also recognized when he was inducted into the Gonzaga Preparatory School Hall of Fame along with his brothers, Rick and Bill. In 2015, the National Eagle Scout Association awarded Mark the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award (DESA) for his tremendous commitment and leadership within the community and health care industry. Recognition of Mark’s groundbreaking work to personalize health care led Portland Business Journal to name him Healthcare CEO of the Year for 2014.

Mark earned both his undergraduate and law degrees from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. While an undergraduate, he was a staff member for U.S. Senator Henry M. “Scoop” Jackson (D-Wash). He lives in Portland with his wife, Leslie, and their two children.