When it comes to health care, some patients are more likely to see the doctor when they feel like their needs are being met. That’s why it’s so important for health care providers to try to meet their patients’ needs as best they can. But sometimes, we need more input from the patient. That’s where patient engagement comes in.
There’s a growing body of evidence that shows that engaged patients have better health outcomes. Patient engagement is the key to improving the health and wellbeing of patients. It has been shown to improve patient satisfaction, reduce emergency room visits, and even save lives.
What Engaged Patients Do That Others Don’t
According to the California Healthcare Foundation, patient engagement is the “active involvement of the patient in his/her healthcare” (California Healthcare Foundation, n.d.).
They attend their appointments on time and feel comfortable asking questions. They are more likely to take their medications as prescribed and avoid the emergency room when a problem could be solved at the doctor’s office or clinic. They have a better experience, which often leads to them becoming loyal patients and referring family and friends to the doctor. This translates into better health and lower costs for you.
Patient Engagement and Patient Satisfaction
A study done for the California Healthcare Foundation showed that a focus on patient engagement improved satisfaction. Getting online access to health records, for example, allowed them to get a satisfaction rating of 90%.
Patients are defined as engaged if they anticipate that they will stay engaged with their healthcare provider. Patients who are not engaged with their healthcare provider are less likely to understand their treatment options and adhere to their treatment plan. They miss opportunities to ask questions and get clear explanations. As a result, they may feel like they weren’t given proper, personalized care. The reality is that they weren’t given the opportunity to engage in the way that was most comfortable for them.
How You Can Improve Patient Engagement In Your Practice
Patient engagement is crucial to achieving the goals of patient-centered healthcare, as it can improve the patient experience, improve outcomes, and save costs. To engage patients, providers need to know the unique needs of their patients and create an experience that matches those needs.
The best way to engage your patients is to listen to them, and understand what is most important to them. Then, provide high-quality service, and use the power of relationship building to build a strong connection with your patients so that they feel like you are on their side.
Streamlining your services may also have a positive effect on patient engagement. For example, allowing patients to do everything they need to do online will help them take a more active role in their care. Scheduling appointments, viewing appointment summaries, getting access to their electronic medical records (EMR), and communicating with their providers are all things that patients should be able to access online.
Healthcare Engagement Solutions
Sequence Health has a variety of healthcare engagement solutions that you can use in your medical practice. From patient portals to health education and more, Sequence Health has the tools you need to improve patient engagement in your practice.