Patient Engagement in Healthcare: How Can I Improve It?

by
Raven Cobb
Clearstep Team

Patient engagement is one of the fundamental necessities of a functioning healthcare system. How can a medical professional help their clients unless there’s proper communication?

More medical settings today are working hard to empower patients to communicate effectively and consistently. According to a 2021 study, the patient engagement solution market has hit a global total of $11 billion. Countries worldwide are becoming more attuned to the needs of their patients through the use of technology.

How can you improve your patient engagement in healthcare? We have a few suggestions to try so your patients are happier and healthier.

Defining Patient Engagement

Improving your hospital will not be achieved unless you know what isn't working and why. Patient engagement refers to how a patient engages with their healthcare information.

Whenever patients fill out an application or ask a question about their health, they engage with a health professional. A broader definition of patient engagement also refers to the long-term relationship between a patient, their support system, and the medical system. Modern technology makes patient engagement easier to track and measure than ever.

Failing to correctly and consistently engage your patients means missing out on symptoms, losing trust, or potentially missing a diagnosis altogether.

Related: The Role of APPs in Telemedicine and Digital Health

The Importance of Patient Engagement in Healthcare

We can’t stress the importance of building trust and rapport with your patients enough. When patients cannot trust their healthcare provider, they can miss out on vital diagnoses that could improve their quality of life.

Healthcare has faced several challenges these past few years, ranging from the pandemic to a rapidly aging population. Facing these challenges head-on isn’t possible when you don’t have an ongoing dialogue with your patients. A few of the benefits that come from increased patient engagement include:

  • Fewer ER visits (thanks to catching symptoms earlier through better communication)
  • Reduced in-patient admissions and shorter in-patient stays
  • Lower medical costs in the long-term

Healthcare isn’t always easy to understand on the patient end of things. We established Clearstep to make the medical process easier for everyone.

a doctor putting one hand on the arm of a patient in a blue hospital gown

Enhanced Versus Standard Support

Making your patient engagement better than the competition means knowing the difference between enhanced versus standard support. 

Standard support is your garden variety fare. This definition includes essential paperwork, a check-up, or a follow-up. Enhanced support stresses the need for more active engagement on behalf of the patient, usually encouraged by a doctor. Think of this definition as more frequent follow-ups, enabling the patient to express their worries and providing supplemental healthcare advice.

Why Patient Engagement is a Must

Failing to engage your patients on every level of their healthcare journey bodes poorly for everyone involved. Not only will your patient miss out on crucial details, but your medical setting may also pay extra.

It’s not enough to give your patient a diagnosis, a prescription, and call it a day. You must actively encourage and reward your patient for expressing themselves, such as following up more frequently or giving advice. Follow-up healthcare advice is beneficial in preventing future visits and empowering patients to take charge of their health.

Related: How AI Chat Increases Health Systems’ Clinical Capacity and Builds Brand Loyalty

Improving Patient Engagement

What are other ways you can improve patient engagement? We’re firm believers that there are always new and improved ways you can bring out the best in your patients’ healthcare.

Below are a few ways you can improve your patient engagement experience so everyone can benefit:

Craft a Care Team Group

The best way to effectively track and measure patient engagement is with a care team group designed for this purpose. This team should have a cross-disciplinary mindset, so all bases are covered.

Define Your Patient Group

People with chronic conditions are ideal for measuring your patient engagement. These issues mean they’ll face more visits, follow-ups, and home care solutions.

Ensure You Have the Right Software for the Job

You can’t track, compare, and contrast all this data on your own. You need to have software designed to store information on a rolling basis so you can create the best patient engagement possible.

Related: 3 Ways Patient Care is Like Tinder

a dentist doing a check-up on a child with blonde hair

Keep Them Happy

The possibility of healthier, happier patients is right around the corner. With patient engagement metrics more effortless than ever to track, you can save everyone time and money.

Patient engagement is defined as the ongoing communication between a patient and their healthcare network. This definition also includes important elements such as family, friends, and specialist offices. Failing to create efficient, consistent patient engagement runs the risk of putting the patient’s health at risk and revenue loss.

The steps we recommend toward implementing improved patient engagement include:

  • Identifying weak spots in your medical setting
  • Actively encouraging patients to share their hopes, fears, and current concerns
  • More consistent follow-ups, whether in-person or through telehealth
  • Setting up a care team group and patient group to better track engagement metrics
  • Use software specifically designed for patient engagement

We know how powerful technology is when it comes to communication. Contact us today to implement accessible, consumer-facing technology for your medical setting.

Share this Post

Interested in learning more about Clearstep Health?

Schedule a Demo

Schedule a Demo

Send us a message to schedule a demo or learn more about Smart Care Routing™ from Clearstep.