How Engaged Are Your Patients And What This Means To Your Practice
Patient engagement tools that interface with your EHR can help your practice in a variety of ways.
Have you ever heard the expression, ‘happy patients, happy practice?’ This phrase points to the importance of making value-based care a top priority. When your patients are proactively engaged in their health, taking ownership of their own treatment journey and willing to share their experiences in patient engagement surveys, you can gain invaluable insight into how your practice is really doing. And in today’s world of value-based care, visibility into the satisfaction levels of your patients is key. Patient surveys, portals, kiosks and more are all powerful tools that can help you glean objective information with respect to how you’re performing as a hard-working physician.
Patient Engagement Surveys – It Isn’t Just for Marketing Anymore
You’ve probably had the experience of going to your favorite store, and the cashier asking for your email address. When you comply with their request, you’ll usually receive an email within 24 hours asking you to complete a survey with an incentive. Take this survey to help us improve our customer service and receive 20% off of your next purchase. Sound familiar? This helps marketing teams gain strategic data and insight into their customer base. It also allows them to keep sending you promotional emails, driving more traffic either online or on foot back into stores. Either way, you are now part of the marketing sales funnel, and even though it is the marketing team that benefits, you, as the consumer benefit as well, by way of getting promotional offers. So everybody wins.
When it comes to a busy physician practice, the same type of strategic marketing data can help doctors perform better. How does this work, exactly? Well, similar to the above example, when you, as a patient, fill out a patient engagement survey, it sends the feedback to the doctor’s office. When using practice management software, and a robust analytics platform, physician practices can combine all of this insightful data to help them make more informed decisions. So not only can practice management software help increase show rates, it can also help you gain valuable insight into how satisfied and comfortable your patients feel with the quality of care they receive.
Changing Emphasis With The Affordable Care Act (2010) and Medicare Put Patient Engagement Front and Center
Patient engagement matters to physicians for so many reasons. When the Affordable Care Act was introduced, a lot of important changes took place in the healthcare system. When a patient sees their provider is making the jump into modern technology by way of their EHR system, they are more likely to feel they are receiving better treatment, which could bolster your reputation.
From Patient to Advocate – Learning How to Work with Your Patients
When you employ a smarter EHR system and add on Practice Management software that has patient engagement tools seamlessly interfaced, you are setting your practice up for the potential of greater success. Patients come in, fill out their information in a tablet-enabled kiosk, and then upon leaving the office receive their survey. When they fill out their survey, it can give patients the impression that you care about their feedback. And then, your practice management system can organize their answers in an easy-to-understand format for your review.
If a patient loves you and is completely satisfied with their visit and quality of care, you could encourage them to leave positive reviews on your website or social media channels. Turning your patients into advocates for your busy practice is a great form of advertising for your practice. More and more patients today are relying on reviews to choose their doctors. The better your online reputation, the more business you could see. It’s just that simple.
Similarly, if a patient completes a less than ideal survey, you can follow up with them and ask more questions, and how you could improve as a practice. This also can provide invaluable insight as to how you can do better. And most of the time, when patients have a negative experience, they aren’t just speaking for themselves—they’re the voice of many. This can potentially help reveal a negative pattern or aspect of your practice that needs addressing. And what better way to fix it than to address your patient’s concerns head on. Turn that negative review into a positive, and you could see a dramatic difference in your patient engagement participation and status.
Different Types of Tools That are Available With Your EHR
Patient reminders and patient surveys that are seamlessly interfaced with Practice Management software can be beneficial for your practice because, rather than relying on a third party and having to click through multiple screens and tabs for this information, the data is interfaced with your software. Once you experience this type of operability, it will be very hard to imagine how you ever lived without it.
So what are the different types of patient engagement tools? Let’s look at the following:
- Telehealth – Virtual visits can help provide a convenient option for patients to connect with your practice from the comfort of their homes.
- Patient Portal – With a patient portal, patients may be able to manage their healthcare from virtually anywhere they have internet access.
- Patient Self-Scheduling – Let your patients know automatically whether their appointment is confirmed or pending. This has been shown to reduce no-show rates.
- Patient Kiosk – Piles of paper getting in your way? A tablet-enabled patient kiosk can help patients to actively engage with their own information, and can save valuable time for office staff, too.
- Patient Reminders – can all be seamlessly interfaced with practice management. Connecting with your patients at different times through voicemail, text and email can help improve no-show rates and provides statistical data as to who shows up and when.
- Patient Surveys – Don’t just give the standard patient engagement survey—have a robust system designed to reveal powerful information. You have the option of using Reputation Management, Visit Surveys and Practice CAHPS®, to glean patient satisfaction in revelatory ways.
Choosing an EHR system that offers these options can help with the overall health of your practice.
The “Happy Patient, Happy Practice” Phrase Can Be Achieved
Studies show that patient engagement is a wonderful topic worth looking into, and implementing into your practice. It’s not just about saving time, either. It’s about making your patients feel like they are an integral part of the healthcare experience. Giving them some agency in their own healthcare journey can positively affect their level of involvement. And the more patients are actively involved with their healthcare, the easier it may be to treat them. Patient reminders, kiosk, self-scheduling and surveys can work cohesively together to get the patient front and center in your practice. Learn not only about how satisfied or dissatisfied they are, but learn from their perspective how you’re doing and how you could improve. Take advantage of valuable information that is readily available.
At Modernizing Medicine®, we know the importance of having practice management software that can help streamline your office operations. Our Practice Management software solution can help increase patient engagement, make staff scheduling easier and cut down on the amount of clicks of switching screens needed to gather information and make decisions. We look forward to answering any questions on how our Practice Management software can help streamline your practice and provide powerful insight into patient engagement information.