In today’s fast-moving healthcare environment, patient outreach is a critical component for driving engagement and improving outcomes. And yet, many healthcare organizations continue to struggle with patient communication and consumerism-related initiatives.
Whether you’re trying to overcome a poor patient experience or low engagement, here are five ways you can improve your patient communication strategy to see better results.
Deliver Information in a Way Patients Can Understand
To be effective, patient communication needs to be more than just information and instructions. It needs to educate and engage patients, and encourage an active role in their own care. Oftentimes the calming, educational bedside manner doctors and nurses excel at in-person is replaced by dense medical language in the digital realm of patient outreach. This leads to a decrease in patient engagement and can increase stress as patients try to navigate unfamiliar terminology.
Technology can help close this gap by bringing bedside manner to digital patient communication. Patient engagement software that allows you to deliver educational videos and imagery via text can put complex medical situations into an easy to understand format.
Actively Listen to the Needs of Your Patients
As the old saying goes, “communication is a two way street”. The same holds true for your patient engagement strategy. One way communication, whether through email or a software platform, fails to give patients an opportunity to engage, share, and be actively involved in their healthcare journey. It is also a huge missed opportunity.
By creating two-way engagement, you’re increasing the number of data points between you and the patient. This is critical for:
- Optimizing the patient care experience
- Developing new care protocols based on concrete patient data
- Gathering assessment information to drive treatment decisions and adherence
- Enabling early intervention if warranted, including chronic care issues such as hypertension or diabetes
Connect in the Way Patients Feel Most Comfortable
As comfort with technology has grown, smartphones have made it easier than ever to connect with consumers. In turn, consumers’ expectations of what an easy, streamlined experience entails has evolved as well. No longer is your healthcare experience unique or separated from, say, a shopping experience. How you’re communicating with a patient is measured against all of their other consumer expectations, whether via email, text or app. It’s one of the reasons that convenient care providers are quickly gaining traction.
Communicating with patients in a way they feel most comfortable means giving the patient the ability to connect with you in the way that will be most engaging for them. While some patients prefer email, others are already inundated with emails. In populations where accessibility to computers and internet is creating healthcare inequities, email might actually be a barrier to their engagement, where a text message can make your patient outreach more impactful. For others, such as those using a remote physiologic monitoring RPM) device, they might need to download your app to stay connected, but also need the gentle nudge of an SMS text message to stay on track.
To drive patient engagement, you need a strategy that includes the ability to integrate with your existing systems to deliver the right message at the right time, through the right medium for the patient.
Power Your Patient Engagement Strategy
Keeping patients on track requires a care platform designed to deliver the right information at the right time.
Learn how Twistle helps streamline care and improve outcomes with proven automated clinical communication software.
Make Them Feel Valued and Supported
At its core, an effective patient engagement strategy should be designed to make patients feel valued and supported as healthcare consumers. Knowing that you’re there to support their unique needs is critical to engaging patients in improving their health and developing long-term trust and loyalty throughout their entire care journey.
Personalized communication driven by a patient’s unique healthcare history is a key component in executing that strategy. Delivering personalized communication, from diagnosis to procedure to recovery, demonstrates that your organization understands the specific needs of the patient at all stages of their healthcare journey.
With a modern patient engagement software platform, delivering automated communication pathways that are customizable and dynamically responsive based on a patient’s data and current state not only streamlines your workflows but allows you to be responsive to the patients who need it most.
Interested in learning more about how Twistle’s patient engagement software can help solve your unique communication challenges? Connect with a Twistle expert to schedule a personalized demo.