The Tools for Patient Engagement
As the healthcare industry transitions away from fee-for-service reimbursement to value-based patient care, the benchmark for patient engagement tools has been raised significantly. However, medical practitioners still find it difficult to use these tools effectively which had been solved by the EMR Software.
Patient engagement isn’t a new concept. It is strongly based on “consumer engagement;” a corporate strategy to gain consumer interest in their product through marketing. Yet patient engagement doesn’t need a lot of push marketing. Patients’ have a vested interest in their own health and actually prefer to be informed of their health related updates. Recently published statistics from Google suggest that 1 in 20 searches are directly linked to health-related information, and that 80% of internet users seek health or disease related information online. With an active patient base, medical practitioners only need to use some basic tools to nurture the relationship with their patients.
Technology has made communication easier on all fronts, including healthcare. Therefore, using these technologies for improved patient engagement only makes sense.
Patient Education — Patient education is an important part of meaningful consent, and proposes presenting patients with information in a clear and accessible format, for easy understanding. This includes the nature of their condition, the treatment options that are available to them, the availability and use of patient portals, consent options, medication adherence, care plans and their impact and outcome. When patients are fully informed by their practitioner at all stages of providing care, a relationship of trust is established.
Electronic Questionnaires — Questionnaires could be of many types; they could be weekly queries on personal patient health, asking for feedback, or based on analytical research being conducted on patient demographics. These are important to establish quantifiable outcomes. Practitioners stand to gain all forms of information they won’t find otherwise, and have concrete, quantifiable statistics to measure the effects patient engagement through these tools.
Wearable Technology — Diagnostic devices have advanced with the need of the physician community and other stakeholders. This has meant that most healthcare software is easily integrated with diagnostic devices, some of which are now wearable. Wearable devices such as VITALITI, HealthPatch MD, and QardioCore make it easy to track patient vitals, and other essential data, at all times of the day, making patient care proactive and engagement, real-time.