In her article, “The Age of Engagement: Improving Patient Communications and Outcomes”, Anne Llewellyn, RN-BC, MS, BHSA, CCM, CRRN, noted “Healthcare is fast entering what could be called the “Age of Engagement” — an era intended to transform the patient-doctor relationship while also rewriting the rules on how to successfully run a medical practice.”
In a recent #KareoChat (every first and third Thursday of the month at 10 a.m. PST/12 p.m. EST), hosted by Anne Llewellyn @AnneLlewellyn, the chat focused on the topic of patient engagement.
Topic 1: Why Do We Hear So Much About Patient Engagement?
So many healthcare articles, hashtags, conference talks often include these two words, but why? Let’s see what the participants had to say about this.
I think Patient Engagement is the key to containing healthcare costs and improving the delivery of care. #kareochat— Anne Llewellyn (@AnneLlewellyn) August 2, 2018
Part 2: Patients/people have to included. Including people gives them 'skin in the game' #kareochat— Anne Llewellyn (@AnneLlewellyn) August 2, 2018
A1. We hear it alot, because clear communication & engagment is a two way street. My care team includes me!— Carol Bush (@TheSocialNurse) August 2, 2018
Topic 2: What Does it Mean to Be an Empowered Patient?
It's good to define a term, so everyone is on the same page. It seems the participants have similar ideas on what an empowered patient is.
A2: Empowered patients are on top of their own care, they do not need the reminder calls to see their physician. They have a voice in the world of healthcare as well. #KareoChat— Shannon Arturi (@credcollabgroup) August 2, 2018
Q2 The empowered patient is more than a mere citizen scientist. S/he is well-informed and takes an active, if a not proactive role in their condition, tx, and quality of life decisions. #patientchat #kareochat pic.twitter.com/4sFT5MN892— ShereeseM, MS/MBA (@ShereesePubHlth) August 2, 2018
A2: Empowered patients/people, do research on their conditions, They ask questions when they don't understand something. #kareochat— Anne Llewellyn (@AnneLlewellyn) August 2, 2018
Topic 3: How Are Providers Helping People to be Engaged in Their Care and Why Does it Matter?
Now let’s take a look at this topic from the clinicians point of view. Let’s see what the participants said about how providers are helping engage their patients.
A3 #providers are helping #patients by actually listening to what they have to say. A collaborative effort equals better results. I am a firm believer that everyone should speak up. #collaboration is key. #KareoChat— Shannon Arturi (@credcollabgroup) August 2, 2018
Part 2 The HC team can help the PT/caregivers to information and help them understand it. We are the professionals Pt need help. #kareochat— Anne Llewellyn (@AnneLlewellyn) August 2, 2018
Q3. Shameless plug for those of us who do healthcare content writing...but I have had patients tell me that it helped them when their HCP showed them a story about a patient who went through the exact same thing (in this case I was writing about cancer and colostomy). #KareoChat— Erin Moriarty Wade (@EMoriartyWade) August 2, 2018
Topic 4: What is Their Incentive for Doing This?
For any action, there must be a return for those doing it. As chatters point out, increasing patient engagement helps providers by forging better patient relationships. In addition, from a financial standpoint, reimbursements are tied to quality patient care, which is increased by patient engagement.
A4 Value based care is becoming more recognized. #kareochat— Anne Llewellyn (@AnneLlewellyn) August 2, 2018
Topic 5: How are Patients/People Responding?
It’s important to take a step back and assess how a new way of doing things is working in the “real world”. Let’s see what the chatters thought about this.
Q5 I think the greatest thing I've seen is providers becoming more involved in designing workflow solutions that benefit the patient-provider relationship. The thing is, we want providers to be able to engage w/ patients, not talk at them. This is where the job is. #kareochat pic.twitter.com/HqMvUTcd1T— ShereeseM, MS/MBA (@ShereesePubHlth) August 2, 2018
Bonus Topic: Is it Working?
For the final question, let’s see how chatters feel patient engagement is working.
Bonus: I think it is getting there, but it is not there yet. Not everyone understands the importance of being involved in their own care, unfortunately. Not enough #hcteam members understand we as patients are more than just a number! #KareoChat— Shannon Arturi (@credcollabgroup) August 2, 2018
Yes, it's working. However, engagement must be consistent across all points of patient care, and not just at the front end (first point of contact). #kareochat— Jeff Craven (@jeffbcraven) August 2, 2018
Anne wrapped it up well with this tweet:
Are you an #empoweredpatient?
Thanks for reading and as always, join us every first and third Thursday at 9 a.m. Pacific time @GoKareo #KareoChat to talk about critical topics facing independent practices and the patients they serve.