One of the biggest roadblocks for patients and providers in providing quality healthcare is patient engagement. There are various factors in all aspects of healthcare, from the system to the provider, to the patient. It can be overlooked. Sometimes the patient is non-compliant. Sometimes it’s a lack of care continuity, communication, resources and tools, or a combination of these things.
Technological advancements and healthcare consumerism have changed the game, altering the way care is determined and delivered. Mobile technology enabled technological advances, but COVID-19 forced patient adoption and acceptance of existing engagement tools. At the same time, patients and consumers are savvier and more involved in their care than ever before. Yet they still lack access to their combined medical information.
Healthcare systems need their patients and providers. Patients need care. The symbiotic relationship already exists. Technology should support this by providing convenience, autonomy, transparency, and seamless, error-free data for providers, researchers, and patients all at once.
How can we simultaneously overcome factors like low treatment protocol adherence, provider burnout, rising healthcare costs, reduced medical staff, and worsening patient outcomes?
We might already have the components to make this work in our lives. We just need to get them to integrate, communicate and collaborate for the benefit of all.
When providers face outdated technology, disjointed communication, and poor workflow integration, they must pay for that in time spent. These factors add to the costs of the system and health staff burden and take time away from other patients’ care. Everyone loses.
Engagement strategies change during each stage of the patient journey based on a person’s age, socioeconomic status, and health condition. They may need a guiding thread as they go from cardiac care to cardiac rehabilitation. They might need tools for the appropriate exercise programs to recondition physically to go with their prescribed medication. They might be underserved because they live in an underserved or rural area where access to proper care is complicated. A lack of post-visit follow-up can lead to decreased patient satisfaction, worsening health conditions, patient churn, poor adherence, and adverse health outcomes.
We often hear how Big Data does this or that for big business, so why don’t we apply this power to the healthcare system and its patients? It can be done. Each system and provider has the information needed to start. It’s in the patient record. What if the patent had that too? One patient portal, with an immutable single health care record available to them and to every provider they work with in every place they travel. Accessible to the right people at the right time to work for all sides through every phase of treatment?
If that sounds impossible, it shouldn’t. Most of this information is there. It’s just not organized, interoperable, and available in a straightforward manner that outlines a treatment roadmap for everyone to follow.
Imagine a system where a patient with diabetes and mobility issues could make one televisit to a provider. The provider could enter information into their existing eHr, see what their physical therapist has recommended, check the data that the patient’s glucose and activity monitors are delivering, and assess how compliant the patient has been for helpful advice. The patient would be able to see these results of their own progress, and all parties could see where improvement is needed at a glance.
Imagine a patient record without time and data loss that could amalgamate test results, smart device output, health monitor information, and all provider input at once that doesn’t need a new eHr for the health system.
Imagine supporting continuity of care for patients after an event to an acute hospital. Instead of disconnection causing very ill patients to navigate separate health systems, providers, and communication systems, they would gain access to the right person at the right time to follow up their care in the community and at home.
The AcquisHEALTH platform does that. Right now. It’s a framework made to fit over existing health systems that makes all the systems and protocols beneath it work together seamlessly and securely without the need for new, expensive software or cumbersome onboarding.
Big companies have seen and reaped the value of customer engagement for years and benefitted from booming online sales and happy customers by paying close attention to their customer’s journeys, needs, and opportunities. We’ve already seen similar things happen by leveraging data to increase consumer engagement, haven’t we? Why not do this for health?
We can accomplish successful healthcare systems and improved patient care by empowering patients to work with their providers for the goal of their best health while reducing stress and costs on the systems by just efficiently using what we already have and making it work for all of us. And we have the power and technology to do it now.