The health care industry needs to adopt an old businessprinciple: The customer comes first.

That's the finding of a survey released fromPricewaterhouseCoopers' Health Research Institute, which says thehealth care industry needs to rev up the customer experience,especially as state exchanges open up a retail market for more than23 million individual shoppers by 2018.

The in-depth survey of 6,000 consumers finds that when it comesto interacting with a hospital, doctor's office or other healthcare provider, consumers are nearly twice as likely as those in theairline, hotel and banking industries to say that stafffriendliness and attitude dictate whether the experience waspositive or negative. A third of consumers said they'd be willingto switch their health insurance or health care provider if anothercompany offered a more “ideal experience.”

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