3 Simple Ways Hospitals Can Engage Patients in Their Care
1. Educate patients through verbal and written communication. Education is one of the top strategies to engage patients in their care, because patients who are educated about their condition and their choices feel more empowered to partner with healthcare providers in their care. Hospitals should educate patients through multiple modalities, including verbal communication and written instructions.
For example, Placentia (Calif.)-Linda Hospital provides a patient guide that includes clinical information, such as the importance of tracking medications, and practical information related to the hospital, such as instructions on adjusting the hospital bed, according to Pam Walrod, director of marketing and community relations at the hospital.
2. Encourage patients to ask questions. Hospitals should also encourage patients to ask questions and discuss their care with their providers. Patients may not ask questions because they are afraid or they don't know what to ask. To overcome these challenges, Placentia-Linda Hospital includes examples of important questions to ask healthcare providers and space for note-taking in its patient guide.
3. Encourage feedback. In addition to providing information to patients, hospitals should also provide channels for patients to make comments about their care. Hospitals can promote patient feedback by directly asking patients about their stay; administering surveys by mail or phone; and establishing patient advisory committees to suggest or comment on changes, among other strategies. Placentia-Linda Hospital has a phone line dedicated to patient satisfaction that patients can use to provide feedback on their care.
More Articles on Patient Engagement:Population Health Management is a Two-Way Street: Encouraging Patient Engagement
Proactive Patient Education and Engagement Helps Hospitals Achieve Stage 2 Meaningful Use Compliance
Hackensack University Medical Center Reduces Readmissions Through Interactive Post-Discharge Program
© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2012. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies by clicking here.
To receive the latest hospital and health system business and legal news and analysis from Becker's Hospital Review, sign-up for the free Becker's Hospital Review E-weekly by clicking here.
New From Becker's Infection Control & Clinical Quality