Press Releases

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Highmark's Doc Talk Checklist helps medicare beneficiaries prevent information overload at their annual wellness visits

PITTSBURGH (April 12, 2017) — Highmark is offering a free Doc Talk Checklist as part of a campaign to help Medicare Advantage beneficiaries make the most of their annual wellness visits. The checklists will be provided to each Highmark Medicare Advantage member.

"We've all been there," said Cindy Donohoe, chief marketing officer at Highmark describing the inspiration behind the advertising to support the wellness visit campaign. "We research online and prepare voluminous lists of questions, only to realize once out the door that information overload prevented us from getting to the heart of the matter, an all-too-frequent occurrence we lampoon in the ads."

The humorous spots show one woman greeting her doctor covered with post-it note questions and another surrounded by stacks of boxes over-flowing with research. A third shows a gentleman uploading his PowerPoint presentation onto his doctor's computer. The ads can be viewed on the Doc Talk Checklist website.

"The ads are powerful because they let patients know that it's ok — even encouraged — to talk with your doctor," Donohoe said. "At the same time, they are funny and memorable in showing how playing twenty questions with you doctor won't get either of you to the right answers."

Highmark's checklist lists nine basic age-appropriate questions designed to help doctors quickly identify health issues patients may not raise on their own such as stress and anxiety levels or potential overmedication. Highmark members receive personalized checklists with additional questions relevant to chronic conditions they may be managing or gaps in their preventive care. Highmark encourages their members to discuss each question with their primary care doctor.

"We want all Medicare beneficiaries to take advantage of their benefits and go to the doctor," explained Ellen Galardy, vice president of senior markets product and strategy at Highmark. "The annual wellness visit strengthens the relationship between doctor and patient. It provides an opportunity to discuss changes in the patient's health, while focusing on wellness and improvement of any health challenges, at no additional cost for our members."

The DocTalk checklist is part of a broader effort by Highmark to improve its members' experience with the health care system. In addition to tools like the checklist, Highmark is connecting the delivery of care with coverage in ways that simplify health care and bring it directly to members in their communities in ways that fit into their real lives.

The DocTalk Checklist creative was designed by Partners + Napier, an integrated advertising agency based in Rochester, New York. The 30-second spots, complemented by online banner and mobile ads are airing in multiple markets throughout Pennsylvania and will roll out into other markets later this year.

"The ads are designed to be memorable and make people laugh while offering the utility of an easily downloadable checklist," said Mike Baron, Partners + Napier's creative director. "The checklist is available to anyone with Medicare as part of Highmark's commitment to building healthier communities."

About Highmark Inc. 

Highmark Inc. and its health insurance subsidiaries and affiliates collectively are among the ten largest health insurers in the United States and comprise the fourth-largest Blue Cross and Blue Shield-affiliated organization. Highmark and its diversified businesses and affiliates operate health insurance plans in Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia that serve five million members and hundreds of thousands of additional members through the Blue Card program. Its diversified businesses serve group customer and individual needs across the United States through dental insurance, vision care and other related businesses. Highmark is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, an association of independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies. For more information, visit

For more information, contact:
Wendy Morphew
Highmark Inc.
412-544-3616 (office)
917-697-1782 (cell)