Looking to help your patients feel vested in their care? Patient engagement encourages patients to manage their own health to achieve better outcomes. It is an active process, requiring patients to do something—or many things—to improve their personal standards of care.
Recently I sat with a sick child in our pediatrician’s office. On the wall was a crudely printed flyer endorsing the practice’s website. Intrigued, I searched the site from my phone and found simple ways to remedy colds, handle tantrums, instill healthy eating habits, and much more. I considered the site a newfound gem, one that I wished had been available long ago. And then I saw that the blog posts dated back to 2006. This resource had been around for almost as long as my children had been patients, and I never knew it existed.
And so it is with patient engagement. Countless resources are available to patients, but they are ineffectual if left unused. The biggest caveat to patient engagement is simply engagement.
Establishing engagement is perhaps the hardest part of enlisting patients to spearhead their own care. It first takes a willing patient, and it then requires communication to introduce available resources. Clinicians can’t make patients participate in the healthcare process, but they can sell the process to encourage its use.
Try these simple suggestions to encourage your patients to use your practice’s technology and actively participate in their own healthcare:
- Disseminate information. Advertise your clinic’s available technology to patients through email and text blitzes, monthly newsletters, and more.
- Offer incentives. Hold occasional drawings and offer small prizes in-office. Also, offer drawings on the actual websites, kiosks, and web portals.
- Word-of-mouth. Encourage providers and clinicians to refer to and use your clinic’s technology often.
- Promote patient success stories. Tout actual patient testimonials in your office. These can even pictures and/or posters on the walls of your waiting room.
Contact a PCIS sales professional today for more information about successfully implementing patient engagement strategies.