Patient engagement is critical for healthcare providers. Engaged patients tend to be generally healthier and have improved quality of life because of better visit attendance and a great understanding of treatments and costs. In addition, it is crucial for empowering every patient in making decisions about their health. That being said, healthcare providers should exert effort and invest in resources to keep every patient engaged in their own healthcare.
Here are five 5 ways to increase patient engagement in practice:
- Improve data collection
Improving data collection can help providers have accurate and complete patient records so that they can be able to do their job competently and engage with their patients as well as cater to their needs better. This can also lessen medical errors because every piece of information is properly documented and stored. Physicians will no longer have to ask their patients questions about their medical history over and over which ultimately saves a lot of time and energy for both parties.
- Embrace technology
Back in the day, it was challenging for patients to know about their healthcare issues or insurance policies. They would have to read religiously through the entire plan to get some answers. If they were curious about their illness, there was no easy access to information other than the books in the library.
At present, it is tremendously easy to have all of the answers in one click thanks to the internet and patient portals https://www.demandforce.com/product/patient-portal/. With the efficiency and effectiveness of the many features of patient portals like Demandforce, healthcare providers can expand access and drive more meaningful engagement with their patients.
- Get patients involved in setting their goals
As medical professionals are the experts, some may feel patients should just follow their advice but healthcare should be all about collaboration. Patients should not just be passively nodding on doctor’s orders. They should be actively involved in setting their health goals. If there is a clearly established goal, patients will be more likely to follow a plan and work towards it.
- Be as specific as possible
Providing vague instructions might steer away patients from achieving their health goals. Healthcare professionals should tell patients not just what to do to improve their health outcomes, but also how to do them exactly. To do so, one can present simple information in written form or other creative ways such as the use of audio, graphics, or video.
- Create accountability
Have a deadline and measurable accountability to encourage the active participation of patients. Helping them track their progress toward goals can be a good form of motivation and encouragement, hence driving engagement at the same time.
There are still a lot of ways to increase engagement between patients and healthcare providers. With the help of technology and devices that are easily accessible, we can utilize them further for the betterment of the general state of our healthcare system. Lastly, it is always important to remember that better patient engagement leads to improved recovery, reduced hospitalizations, and lower costs of care.