The above findings were from a 2012 Blue Shield of California Foundation survey . This is common sense for most people in the healthcare industry, but the findings were interesting.
Among patients who reported feeling less involved and less informed about their care, for instance, only 33% said they were comfortable asking their provider questions. But that number jumped to 67% among patients who reported being informed about their health. *
Among respondents who reported being highly informed about their health, more than 60% said they always understood treatment plans and providers' advice, compared with 18% of less informed patients. And only 44% said their doctor always explains things to them in ways they can understand. *
And in this article from April 21st, 2009 on Better Health Network's website, Dr. Auerbach wrote how most of his colleagues are looking for their patients to be more informed and involved in their health. His chief concern was how the patients would research and receive the information.
What is funny is that today, we are still struggling with ways to reach the patient. Absorbing media dominates everyone's time from YouTube to Facebook, but the healthcare waiting areas (exam rooms, lobbies, waiting rooms) have most stayed trapped in the 1990s. Mindless daytime TV or drug sponsored "education" is still being shown in these areas. With rare exception, this programming is not helping patients learn about their health or health system which should be the goal of this dwell time.
Healthcare providers need to invest in their patient by working with companies that provide customized, ad-free digital patient education. This education can be consumed by the patient whether they are in a waiting area, admitted as to a facility, or at home. The best part is that the provider controls the message of the content and the partner controls how the message gets to the patient.
A company like Halo Health will work with the practice to understand their needs, develop a custom solution then keep the content fresh and relevant to the audience. This communication allows you to better inform your patient base about your services, staff profiles, community events, and ancillary service providers. Your patients now are armed to ask questions, better understand what you are telling them, and more open to guidance.
This powerful tool is typically provided for less than the cost of your daily latte. Get started today by contacting Halo Health or another supplier.
* Modern Healthcare article by Maureen McKinney | September 10, 2012