Patients 60% more likely to respond to texts than emails, report finds: 3 notes

If you want patients to respond to hospital and health system outreach, send them a text.

That's the central finding of a new report from Luma Health that examined the most successful patient engagement innovations of 2019 and concluded that automated, two-way texting far outweighs the ability of email and phone outreach to engage patients to schedule and confirm appointments.

Three takeaways from the report:

1. Reminder response rates were significantly higher for those sent via text message: a 52 percent response rate, compared to 28 percent and 26 percent for email and phone reminders, respectively.

2. Patients' preference for text communication is age-agnostic; in fact, text message reminder confirmation rates were 13 percent higher for the 55-74 age group than those aged 18-34, the youngest group included in the report. Though the oldest age group studied (75-94) had the lowest text-based response rate, at 39 percent, that is only a small drop from the youngest cohort's 43 percent rate.

3. Furthermore, while less than half of patients typically respond to post-appointment requests for feedback, they are significantly more likely to do so if the request arrives via text. According to the report, 38 percent of patients offered feedback by text, compared to 19 percent of those who were asked for information via email.

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