7 Patient Engagement Solutions Clinicians Want to Better Communicate with Patients and Their Families
See details in this white paper: New Study Reveals Care Team and Family Member Connectivity Gaps
Challenges and Gaps in Patient Communications and Engagement Today
A recent study raises concerns about the industry’s ability to engage patients, family members, and clinical care team members effectively.
With more than 100 hospice leaders responding to a recent Porter Research study, 79% report that they still use the telephone – when not engaged in face-to-face visits – as their primary means of communicating with patients.
Most hospices are still using unsecure, outdated communication tools to collaborate with patients, family members and each other.
What is the Most Popular Way Organizations Communicate with Patients Outside of Face-to-Face Visits Today?
The positive news from the Porter Research study is that a sizable portion (39%) of hospices report that they intend to invest in innovative technology to help improve their care team member and patient/family engagement capabilities soon. Their needs center around more instantaneously connecting with both clinical and non-clinical care team members as well as being more secure and operating in a digital environment.
Don’t miss this free webinar: Empower Your Clinical Team to Elevate the Customer Experience
3 Ways Enhanced Communications Improves Patient Engagement
Your Peer Weighs In
Trustbridge is the leading non-profit hospice care provider in South Florida’s Broward and Palm Beach counties.
“Every organization is concerned about family surveys,” says Lowry. “By implementing technology, we’re going to improve these surveys through better communication both internally and externally so that our teams, our patients, and their families are all on the same page moving forward.”
Below, we share the many ways our organization is improving patient communications and engagement.
- Patient and Family Medication Discussions. With the right technology, clinicians can engage patients and families on a deeper level through digital education on treatments, medications, and anything else that needs to be discussed. “While clinicians are in the home educating patients on the care they’re receiving, we’ve learned that patients don’t always remember these conversations,” says Lowry. “We’re able to send treatment details electronically, so they have that information at their fingertips.”
- Improved Outcomes. When patients and their caregivers are more informed, it can lead to better outcomes and increased satisfaction – which leads to improved family surveys. While digital solutions improve connection, technology can go beyond easing workflows and higher-quality care. When patients and their caregivers are more informed, it can lead to better outcomes and increased satisfaction – which leads to improved family surveys.
- Improved Communications. Some of the ways to achieve better communication internally include ordering DME, prescription changes or refills, requesting volunteers, coordinating music therapy, and more.
“We’re able to use technology to send treatment details electronically, so they have that information at their fingertips,” Lowry says.
With better connections and the right solutions, Trustbridge clinicians can engage patients and families on a deeper level through digital education on treatments, medications, and anything else that needs to be discussed.
Don’t miss this case study: Large hospice and palliative care provider achieves clinician and patient satisfaction
4 Ideas to Increase Patient Engagement Today
By Christie McWilliams, RN, Implementation Consultant, CitusHealth
When it comes to the importance of patient engagement in the home, there’s no better perspective than that of a nurse.
Whether good or bad, CAHPS scores can be a valuable tool to help organizations understand how patients feel about the service they receive. Here, then, are four ways to increase patient engagement and, ultimately, CAHPS scores.
- Give patients control. Nurses typically encounter patients at a point in their lives where they’re in a challenging situation that they can’t control. By engaging them to participate in their care – deciding how to communicate with their nurse, when they can visit, etc. – they get some of that control back and feel like they are being heard.
- Respond quickly. With the right communication tool, patients no longer need to wait on hold while a nurse is tracked down to answer their questions. If they message their nurse during agreed upon hours, they have a way of getting an instant response to their concerns. Whether their nurse responds with a message, phone call, or video chat, timely help for patients and their families increase engagement and satisfaction.
- Be present. Today, we chart electronically, which means nurses in the home are often looking at a tablet, typing what the patient is saying. It’s important to not lose sight of the fact that you’re in the patient’s home. Don’t let technology become a barrier to personal connection. For older generations, making eye contact is a sign of respect and that you’re listening to what they have to say. Don’t keep your head buried in technology, but also communicate how and why the tablet is being used – that it gathers details for the care team to make the best possible decisions and that they can speak up if it makes them uncomfortable. When nurses are in the home, they are guests. Patients want to feel treated with respect, especially in their own space.
- Keep patients informed. Simply put, informed patients make better decisions. They better understand the whys and will be more compliant with their treatment. Instead of giving patients medication and telling them to take it three times a day, sit down and explain it in detail. Talk about the name of it, what it’s for, why it’s important to take the correct dose, and what can happen if they don’t. Of course, they can choose whether to take the medication. It’s up to us to make sure they can make an informed decision.
7 Strategies to Meet the Growing Communication Demands of Your Business
Here are a few scenarios where a modern, purpose-built collaboration and communications platform can help your organization meet the unique and growing demands of businesses.
- Create patient discussion groups that enable all stakeholders to actively engage in real-time conversations about a patient’s changing condition via text, photos, or video chat to help avoid gaps in care and costly complications.
- Establish escalation paths and have the system automatically manage these to ensure timely responses across patient, family member, or clinical staff teams.
- Capture all communications and embed into the patient’s record for audit and/or training purposes.
- Set role-based security access to information to ensure only those who are pre-authorized or designated to participate in the patient’s care can see and exchange information.
- Build and deliver family member satisfaction surveys, admission paperwork, incidence forms, and bereavement packages electronically while also quickly capturing necessary e-signatures to expedite billing.
- Empower on-the-go clinical staff to instantly and easily engage a supervisor or medical director in an in-home video consultation about a concern that needs to be resolved to reduce unpaid or excess visits or with a patient or family member regarding slight schedule changes.
- Capture medication and supply counts in the home electronically to avoid overstocking, which wastes valuable per diem dollars, or understocking, which results in unplanned visits or courier fees.
CitusHealth, a wholly owned subsidiary of ResMed, is a digital health transformation leader that enables real-time, secure collaboration between patients, care teams, care partners, and family members to optimize the patient experience and positively impact the financial outcome of the care provider. Founded by a post-acute care nurse with domain expertise and an internationally recognized digital health expert, CitusHealth delivers the only comprehensive on-demand digital and mobile platform that sets a new standard of patient, caregiver, family, and partner engagement. For more information, visit citushealth.com.
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