Top 8 Reasons to Improve Patient Communications
The future of healthcare is being shaped largely by the patient engagement evolution. In this new world of health care, effective patient communications and engagement will continue to control the course of success. It is all about the right care, in the right place, at the right time.
Achieving better health requires the patient to be armed with the right tools and information. Here are the top 8 reasons why healthcare organisations should improve their patient communications…
#1 Meet Patient Expectations
As smartphone usage continues to grow, so does the demand for mobile healthcare access. Approximately 56% of patients are now demanding access to their healthcare communications via personalised apps. Another survey found that 79% of respondents were more likely to select a provider who allows them to conduct healthcare interactions online or on a mobile device (Medical Economics). As a result, healthcare leaders are now seeking to improve the patient experience through tailoring communications strategies to meet the expectations of their digital savvy patients.
#2 Minimise Risks
At transitions of care, the risk of communications errors is increased, which can lead to poor health outcomes, patient distress or inappropriate patient care (ACSQHC). During the course of a 4-day hospital stay, a patient may interact with 50 different employees, including physicians, nurses, technicians, and others. When healthcare professionals are not communicating effectively, patient safety is at risk for reasons like lack of critical information and misinterpretation. Furthermore, a study by Anderson et al. found that patients only recall 40% of the information they are given – and almost half of what they thought they remembered is incorrect.
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#3 Increase Profits
Offering a superior patient experience not only strengthens engagement but also correlates with 50% higher hospital margins (Accenture). According to Accenture, this correlation exists across all hospital and health service types.
#4 Achieve Positive ROI
According to Accenture, 73% of organizations that have adopted patient personalization and engagement strategies have seen positive financial results from the decision so far. Moreover, 78% of healthcare organisations are achieving positive ROI from mobile app investments, according to a survey by Red Hat. Therefore, improving patient communications and engagement through implementing of mobile strategy is key for achieving ROI.
#5 Better Engagement For Less
Healthcare delivery systems are turning to patient engagement and activation as another tool to help improve patient communications and outcomes. Evidence shows that strong patient engagement programs can improve outcomes while significantly reducing hospital admissions and other costs. Moreover, 68% of health executives say that better patient engagement will reduce overall costs (ASQ).
#6 Reduce Readmissions
Better communications between patients, families and health professionals reduce rates of readmission (Deakin University). Gallup suggests that the education patients receive before surgery has significant positive effects on surgery outcomes, increases overall patient satisfaction and improves quality of life. For hospitals, effective patient communications mean reducing costly readmissions and improving satisfaction scores (Gallup).
A study by Veroff et al. found that patients who received enhanced support had 5.3% lower overall medical costs and 12.5% fewer hospital readmissions than patients who received the usual level of support. Patient engagement initiatives not only lead to reductions in hospital visits but also improvements in treatment adherence and quality of life (Medical Economics).
#7 Deliver Best Practice Efficiently
According to the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, effective patient-clinician communication and engagement with patients at transitions of care can:
- Positively influence a person’s health outcomes
- Prevent adverse events during care
- Reduce readmission to hospitals following discharge
A perioperative support tool, such as a Patient Engagement Platform, is designed to aid in the continuous quality improvement of perioperative structures, processes and outcomes for patients. This is achieved by facilitating effective patient-centered care and knowledge sharing between providers and patients. By refining patient communications and education, healthcare providers can significantly improve the patient experience and outcomes.
#8 Reduce Administration Costs
According to a recent study, administration consumes approximately 31% of U.S. health spending (PNHP). Patient engagement platforms reduce costs by integrating and improving workflows and communications, providing a better patient experience. More specifically, leveraging the Liquid State Platform can save healthcare providers up to 63% in communications and administration costs (based on a pilot program with Children’s Health Queensland 2017).
It’s no secret that digital innovation has already begun to disrupt the health industry for the better. The many benefits of new healthcare technology and patient engagement initiatives have been proven to outweigh the costs and challenges associated with implementation. Healthcare leaders now have an opportunity to create connected and personalised patient journeys that can guide and engage patients in their care. A Patient Engagement Platform offers healthcare providers an innovative solution focused on empowering patients to be actively involved in every stage of their health care journey.Tags: health care, patient safety