How would I engage patients?, Simple. Inform, Empower, Collaborate
Engaged patients are vital to achieving the objective of Empowering patients.
If you can activate them, you will have a better chance to:
Lower Medical Costs, Raise Patient Satisfaction, Improve Outcomes
Many of these engaged patients actively take part in their healthcare using digital tools and want to connect with you using mHealth technologies. If you want to effectively engage them, a mobile strategy is critical. Think about it, what’s the one thing they have in their possession almost all of the time? Their mobile phone. Not only are most of your potential patients on their phones a large portion of the day, but they actually want to use them to access health information: In fact, research shows that they are already looking for it.
So let’s look at 3 simple strategies to engage your potential patients:
1 Inform: A person has a symptom and they are looking for help. Stand out in physician listings by sharing detailed information about your doctors, their photos, your logo. List your facilities and physicians on sites and mobile apps that already have millions of active users.
2 Empower: Once you’ve attracted them, you need to give them something of value. We need to empower them with the correct set of digital healthcare tools. We need to support patients in making better healthcare decisions by providing valuable, educational tools. The most simple and useful tool you can provide consumers is a mobile symptom checker.
By far the largest growing sector 80% want to make appointments online ahead of visit 78% of internet users research health online 67% of all mobile searches result in action within 1 hour. 63% want access to more comprehensive information about doctors online
- Collaborate: Then, don’t leave them hanging, “Collaborate” with them. Make it easy to make an appointment once a patient selects a physician. If patients are online or on a mobile device, provide a link directly from the provider’s page. It should be a two way information street, the work doesn’t end after providing the appointment, in fact it starts after the patient gets an appointment. And once you have them as your patient, make it easy for them to return, “retain” them. Many patient portal shy away from actual reporting of the feedback from the patient about their physician, thinking that would antagonize the doctors in their network and they will end up losing the doctor, it is a catch 22 situation. I know of a patient portal in India they actually have reinvented the buzzword “algorithm” to buttress their argument about the doctor rating, whereas a simple user, he is just not bothered about the complex algorithm, he just wants to know whether Provider A is better than Provider B.
That’s it, patient engagement really does start with these 3 simple strategies.
Put them into practice and you can: Improve patient satisfaction, Attract more patients and book more appointments, Lower the cost of healthcare, Convert consumers to patients throughout the care continuum.