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Patient engagement tools bring consumer vibes to healthcare
This article is part of the Pulse issue of March 2017, Vol. 5 No. 2
Engaging patients in their own health decisions is challenging, but hospitals are having success with technologies and tactics used by business retailers and other consumer-focused industries. IT professionals in hospitals agree that patient engagement tools must ultimately center on the patient's needs. "[Patient engagement] needs to be about what the patient wants because a patient doesn't necessarily want what I [or a doctor] think they may want," said Michael Marino, chief of IS operations and clinical systems at St. Joseph Health in Irvine, Calif. "Really understanding what a patient's wishes are and being able to help them on that journey is what we need to do from an engagement standpoint." Several methods are being used to maximize patient engagement tools and techniques. Among them are remote patient monitoring -- a person uses a mobile device at home to take a routine test or track a medical condition -- and more consumer-driven options such as souped-up TV remotes that provide convenience in hospital rooms. Tracking ...
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Patients are acting more like consumers and therefore have higher expectations of their healthcare providers. New technologies are needed to truly engage them.
With the advent of value-based care, patient engagement is becoming increasingly important to keep patients as long-term customers and get them involved in their own treatment.
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Perhaps it's been overstated that healthcare trails other industries when it comes to adopting software, but patient engagement offers a worthy way for hospitals to catch up.
Patient engagement tools, such as virtual assistants and health apps, can help healthcare providers improve the physician-patient relationship and improve outcomes.