Saturday, March 3, 2007

Clinial innovation - Life Line Screening: An Example of an Innovation that the Public Wants and Will Pay For

In my last blog, I cited Peter F. Drucker’s comment that the key to a successful innovation is one that customers want and will pay for. This will become increasingly important in consumer-driven health care. In this new environment, patients will pay more out of pocket, will take more responsibility for their health, and will seek moe value for their dollar.

No Better Example

I can think of no better example of a successful innovative company in the health care field than Life Line Screening, headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. It operates in 48 states and has teams of nurse and other professionals riding in more than 100 mobile vans to conduct screening clinics. These clinics feature two basic technologies: non-invasive ultrasound to screen for carotid artery disease, abdominal aneurysms, peripheral vascular disease, and osteoporosis; and blood tests to screen for diabetes and coronary risk (lipid panels and C-reactive protein).


Life Line Screening markets their services by local and national media and sets up appointments for screening sessions in local neighborhoods, places of worship, and community and senior centers. The charge is $129 for four ultrasound vascular screening and $45 or less for the blood tests. Groups of well-qualified bck-up physicians interpret results, help contact patients, and refer them to local physicians should something abnormal occur. The company continues to grow each year.

Patient Satisfaction

In my own circle of friends, I know of at least half a dozen who get screened each year and who consider the screening an annual not-to-miss ritual well worth the price.

Why is Life Line Screening so successful? I think the reasons are quite simple.

• It’s personal -- Who among us hasn’t known of someone who died or been incapacitated by a sudden and unexpected stroke, heart attack, ruptured abdominal aneurysm, fractured hip, or has suffered the ravages of diabetes?
• There’s something magical about directly visualizing a vascular lesion in time to so something about it.
• It answers the fundamental question asked by admirers of innovation: “Now why didn’t I think of that?”

1 comment:

Life Line Screening said...

Thank you for your discussion of Life Line Screening and our services. We appreciate your taking the time to explain what we do and why it is important. We hope that everyone age 50 and over will consider these potentially life-saving tests, particularly if they have high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, diabetes or a family history of cardiovascular disease. As our baby boomers grow older they are more determined than ever to take care of themselves and to be preventive about their health. We strive to be a part of that plan. Screenings are available all over the country and now include atrial fibrillation screening, which is a significant risk factor for stroke. If anyone is interested in registering for a screening they can do so by calling 1-877-237-1336 or visiting Life Line Screening online.

Thank you, Dr. Reece for promoting the power of prevention and educating people about vascular screening.