It is a dilemma we have all faced as physicians: trying to ensure the highest levels of patient engagement throughout our practice. As much as we try to emphasize the importance of patient plans through communication, visit summary paperwork, and notes, some patients may not abide by these guidelines once they leave the practice.
We can certainly relate to the busy lives many have between appointments—physician burnout is all too common amongst our colleagues. There are golden opportunities during follow-up visits when we learn that a patient has not been following their plan. Maybe it’s that they haven’t been taking their medications correctly, or at all. Unfortunately, follow-up appointments frequently result in no-shows.
Regardless of the reasons, as an industry, it’s easy to see that an increase in patient engagement levels would be beneficial. With telemedicine at the helm, here are a few ways.
Access to Medical Records Online
Much of the reasoning for decreased levels of patient engagement is the lack of available information. When a visit ends for a patient, they are given their discharge instructions, but it remains unclear how many patients hold onto those instructions. For those who do hold onto them, the real question is How often will they refer to them in the future?
In an environment surrounded by technology, it only makes sense to offer electronic versions of medical records online. Having patient portal access between your office and your patient is a good start to giving this access and if your office has yet to have this as a service, we suggest looking into it.
Need some convincing? Accenture released a study that reported 41% of U.S. consumers said they would be willing to switch doctors in order to gain access to their own medical records.
Recommend Mobile Health Apps
Kaveh Safavi M.D., Accenture Global Health Senior Managing Partner stated that “Just as consumers can self-manage most other aspects of their lives, they expect to take greater ownership of their medical care.”
We see other apps giving personal information most never had access to—such as credit reports—and the response has been tremendous. We can increase levels of patient engagement through recommending such apps in our industry, thus focusing more attention on how they can live healthier lifestyles.
Offer Virtual Telemedicine Visits
It goes without saying that convenience is key in today’s busy environment. Virtual visits may have seemed impersonal and unproductive years ago, but this isn’t the case today. Video conferencing has become much more common and virtual, face-to-face chats are seemingly more productive, as they save time.
The same goes for virtual doctor visits. As physicians, patient care is our number one priority, and if offering virtual appointments will lead to higher levels of patient engagement, then it may be an effective plan for your office.
Want Increased Levels of Patient Engagement?
At Physicians Gone Wild, patient care is at our core. We do what we can to provide other practicing physicians with the right tools to keep up with the technological changes in medicine. Patient engagement levels spike when we look into ways to assist those patients and telemedicine offers many benefits.
Want to learn more about how you can incorporate telemedicine into your office? Our retreats offer the tools necessary to get your practice running, generating additional revenue in the process. Best of all, these retreats take place in exotic locations and each session ends at noon so you can have plenty of time to relax and explore!
Reach out to us at email@example.com for more information.