HLTH Forward Podcast

Transforming Customer Experience: Anika Gardenhire, Chief Customer Experience Officer @Centene

July 17, 2023
HLTH Forward Podcast
Transforming Customer Experience: Anika Gardenhire, Chief Customer Experience Officer @Centene
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Show Notes

Customer experience, in other words, human experience, is of higher importance in healthcare. Surveys indicate that 80% of us would value an experience that is seamless, integrated, and innovative and, of course, one that is of high quality and is delivered with empathy and good knowledgeable practice skills.

In this episode, I am in conversation with Anika Gardenhire, Chief Customer Experience Officer at Centene, serving 28 million members. She shares her journey as a nurse and caregiver, giving her the front-row seat to witness and learn the waves of human experience in a clinical setting that she now brings to her role. We discuss emerging technologies and the importance of focusing on empathy and grounding ourselves in the reality of the ecosystem.

The importance of passing the values of creating this experience externally and internally through the veins of each Centene person who touches a patient's life requires good governance, adaptive and empathetic talent management, and a seamless integration of technologies to create the best health outcomes.

With the growing healthcare costs, physician burnout and aging population there is a desperate need to create systemic changes and create a conscious human-centric healthcare system.

Anika Gardenhire, RN, BSN, MMCI serves as Chief Customer Experience Officer for Centene Corporation. In this role, Ms. Gardenhire works collaboratively across the organization to ensure the voices of Centene's customers are heard throughout all enterprise decision-making processes. She brings a deep understanding of the company's key stakeholders, including members, providers, regulators, and employees, given the multiple vantage points from which she's viewed the health care system. From her time as a cardiology recovery nurse to her most recent role leading Centene's digital transformation, Ms. Gardenhire has seen what enables—and what inhibits—health through every step of the health care journey. Ms. Gardenhire leads a team focused on driving the best possible experience and outcomes for customers.

Ms. Gardenhire joined Centene in 2020. Most recently, she served as Chief Digital Officer and was responsible for leading the digital solutions and products organization. Previously, she served as Centene's Regional Vice President, Digital and Clinical Systems, where she partnered with clinical and business leaders to streamline how the company allocates resources, achieves goals, and operates more efficiently. Before joining Centene, she served as Assistant Vice President of Digital Transformation for Intermountain Healthcare; Principal with Leidos, a global leader in the integration and application of information technology; and Senior Manager with Deloitte.

About Host
Smriti Kirubanandan has a strong background in robotics and public health and is a Healthcare Executive, where she focuses on driving significant transformations within the healthcare ecosystem, concentrating on customer experience, intelligent automation, data analytics and insights, and is determined to make healthcare more accessible and affordable through innovation and empathy. She also spearheads brand development, thought leadership, and market research. 

Smriti is a selected Young Global Leader 2023 by the World Economic Forum, a member of the Young Leaders Circle at the Milken Institute, and is the Founder of HLTH Forward Podcast- an award-winning media platform that hosts healthcare leaders, policymakers, and artists to discuss the challenges in the system and what we could do collectively to move healthcare forward. 

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