April 29, 2018

Atlas or Google Maps


Love the novelty of this question but does it really matter? They’re both really effective tools if used properly, right?

Several weeks ago while watching The Masters, Paul Azinger was giving Mike Tirico a hard time about the route he took to Augusta, GA from Jupiter, FL. It was hilarious. Azinger was giving Tirico grief about him taking the less efficient route. And, then he starting laying into Tirico about the fact that he was probably using an old Rand McNally Atlas. I said to myself, what’s that got to do with anything?!

Reminded me of the first time I drove across country. From Cleveland, sitting on my friend’s couch at Case Western taking down verbal instructions by phone, I set out to drive to Connecticut. Made it through NYC, and very close to final destination before becoming frustrated trying to find my street in the dark. I stopped, grabbed more instructions from a gas station attendant, back in the car. Stopped again. More instructions from 2nd gas station attendant. And, finally found my destination. Glad to be at my new apartment but frustrated by not being able to execute.

Isn’t that a little (or a lot!) like managing a group health plan without clinical data analytics and any type of meaningful navigation system? Like being in the dark trying to find your way around? You know where you want to go, but sometimes it’s stop and go – One step forward, two back as they say.

No clincial data analytics – Which route do you take? Do you have tools to measure effectiveness while en route from point A to point B? What are your key performance indicators (KPIs) and how are you getting there?

What about your employees? Do they have anyone (certified professionals – Health Coaches? Registered Dietitian? Registered Nurse?) to guide them while striving for behavior change?

My initial trip to CT was in 1998. 20 years ago. A Rand McNally Atlas would have undoubtedly been helpful! If iPhones and the Map App were around, that would’ve been helpful, too! Point is, the task of driving across country with no nav system is rough. Likewise, managing a group health plan with limited (or no!) tools and certified professionals to help execute on goals & objectives is guesswork at it’s core. It’s 2018 and it takes a dedicated team to pull it off.

My colleagues and I at Apex Benefits have a core belief that what you can measure (clinically), you can measure (financially)….if you’re a plan sponsor that feels like you’re in the dark or taking one step forward and two back, let’s connect this Spring to give enough time to establish a new path with a well-engineered nav system.

Scott Long

Authored By

Scott Long, CPBS, CHVP

Executive Advisor


Meet Scott