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Case Study: New Program Start-up

The Challenge

A new medical subspecialty emerged after the introduction of a new diagnostic procedure. Third-party payors, however, expressed skepticism about the skills of individuals performing these new procedures. Before agreeing to reimburse physicians, they wanted assurances that the procedures were being performed correctly and appropriately. The key challenge for the professional society representing the subspecialty: how to develop a certification program that would be acceptable to both payors and the profession.

The Questions

Did the market need this certification? Would physicians who already held multiple certifications buy into yet another? What would be the most effective way to position the credential to third-party payors? How should the program be governed and administered both to enhance its credibility and minimize risk to the professional society? Who should be eligible to take the examination? What skills and knowledge should be assessed?

The Solution

Qualitative and quantitative market research allowed us to confirm interest in certification – as well as identify the challenges and opportunities that would be faced in marketing the new credential. Working 
in tandem with the society, we outlined a strategy for moving forward and created a program design blueprint to guide the creation of the new credential.

The Results

Today the certification is required by some of the largest third-party payors in the United States.

And because of worldwide interest in the diagnostic technique, the certification is now offered internationally. Program volumes have doubled over the last five years.

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