Patient engagement is on the rise and is a popular subject amongst healthcare providers to encourage patients to lower costs and arrive at better outcomes. According to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), “Those who are engaged as decision-makers tend to be healthier and happier with their healthcare results.” With all the positive outcomes that can come from patient engagement, how can providers further enable patient engagement? According to Emil Chiauzzi, research director at PatientsLikeMe, there are two key methods that can empower patient engagement: resources and patience. Resources need to be available for the patient and it is also essential for healthcare providers to take their time with patients to answer any questions or concerns they might have.
Resources that are Available and Accessible
The first method is to ensure that patients have all the necessary information and resources. According to Patient Engagement HIT, “Eighty-nine percent of senior patients (age 55 and older) surveyed said they want to manage their own healthcare and will need health technology access to do so” and “by equipping patients with vital skills and resources pertinent to their conditions, providers drive patient self-management. These skills may also inspire the patient to be more involved at the point of care by asking questions and engaging with their care plans.”
Being Patient with your Patient
The second key to Chiauzzi’s method is to take the time to work with patients to fulfill all of their needs. When patients are empowered, Chiauzzi says, “They ask more questions. They’re more curious. They may not take no for an answer. They may want to delve into things a little more deeply. They may have aspects of their experience that they want to explain more.” Even though being patient and listening can take more time and effort, it is very important for healthcare providers to be encouraging toward their patients. Engaged patients have a greater interest in taking control of their health. According to Sentact, “Patients who are both educated and engaged have a 34% reduction in patient complaints.”
Helping Patients Set Personal Goals
It is vital for patients to be involved in setting their own health goals. Patients are much more likely to follow a plan if that plan works toward an important goal. Healthcare professionals can help leverage a positive mindset by helping patients get involved in setting their health goals. For example, a knee replacement patient’s goal could be to walk down the aisle unaided at a child’s wedding. A great rule to help the patient achieve a personal goal is to remember Stamp&Chase’s S.M.A.R.T. Goals:
- S for Specific – “Is your goal specific enough to your current medical situation?”
- M for Measurable and Meaningful – “Is your goal meaningful enough for you to want to accomplish?”
- A for Agreed-Upon – “Is this a goal both you and your doctor have agreed upon?”
- R for Realistic – “Is this goal realistic and manageable to your situation?”
- T for Track – “Can you effectively track new results and more goals?”
By utilizing these methods, your patients will have increased knowledge about their condition, which can encourage them to live healthier lifestyles through improved care and subsequently less emergency visits. As for physicians, treatment of their patients becomes more effective, saving them time and money.
JourneyLabs can support both the patient and healthcare provider in this situation. The JourneyLabs platform rapidly creates and deploys mobile and web-based patient care journeys, remote patient monitoring and clinical pathway solutions. According to Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), “Facilitating ongoing communication between patients and physicians via apps and online portals can improve engagement rates by 60% or higher.” Patient Engagement Hit also states that “92% of patients that have limited or lack of access to their own interactive medical data lowers patient satisfaction scores.” JourneyLabs provides:
- Virtual check-ins and digital care management across any care setting.
- Access for healthcare providers to respond in real-time to patients leading to improved satisfaction.
- The ability for patients to reach out to providers should they have any questions or feedback.
- The capability to self-schedule tasks for patients.
This platform can easily digitize, integrate and scale care management processes to improve outcomes and reduce costs. For more information or a demo of JourneyLabs Platform, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 321-221-1009.
Carmella Arroyo is a Marketing Intern at JourneyLabs. She is currently attending the University of Central Florida pursuing her B.A. in Digital Media with a minor in Business.
JourneyLabs help organizations rapidly create mobile and web applications to automate, scale and support any customer journey. The cloud-based technology platform drives automated digital engagement influenced by real-time user interactions and data insights. For more information about JourneyLabs, please visit journeylabs.io or test drive the Platform.