Leading health insurers are leveraging technology to deliver better access for patients and easier system navigation for care providers. Insurers that deliver on those demands not only increase their own competitive advantage, they also save money and help change the perception of the market as overly complex and bureaucratic. Cloud-based contracting has emerged as one compelling, cost-effective and easy-to-deploy method for improving service and modernizing the health care system.

UnitedHealth Group's experience with digital contracts and e-signatures illustrates how these technologies are changing the way insurers and their stakeholders do business. The company is rolling out e-contracting as part of its physician contracting process. Traditionally, the physician contracting process can take five weeks or longer to finalize. That was the status quo for decades, but as UnitedHealth began looking at improving its processes, it determined that paperless contracting could better serve physicians' needs, saving them time and administrative costs, and helping the company build stronger relationships with physicians joining its care provider network.

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