How to Improve Patient Engagement in Healthcare

April 5, 2023

The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) reports that in 2022, the average annual health insurance premium for single coverage in the United States was $7,911 and $22,221 for families. Combining this with Statista’s research showing total out-of-pocket healthcare payments on the rise, it’s no wonder patients are becoming more vocal about what they do and don’t want on their healthcare journey.

Standards for better patient engagement in healthcare are evolving. The bar is high for all stakeholders, too. Patients want to feel seen, heard and respected by their healthcare providers. And if they aren’t engaged and satisfied? They’ll find another provider who will meet their needs.

One of the best ways healthcare clinics and hospitals can give patients what they want is to earn how to improve patient engagement in healthcare. This could involve onboarding creative healthcare solutions ranging from stricter adherence to patient treatment plans to using QR codes.

Why is patient engagement important? 

Patients are now looking for a more personalized customer experience from their healthcare providers than ever before. So, what is patient engagement in healthcare? It is the involvement and commitment of a patient in their own treatment plan as well as recovery prospects. They’re willing to pack up and move on to the next care provider to get the level of patient engagement and satisfaction they’re looking for.

The World Health Organization defines patient engagement as “the process of building the capacity of patients, families, carers, as well as healthcare providers to facilitate and support the active involvement of patients in their care, in order to enhance safety, quality and people-centeredness of healthcare service delivery.”

Patient engagement directly affects patient satisfaction. But its impact is broad sweeping and doesn’t stop there. 

Improving patient experience improves health outcomes

The importance of patient engagement in healthcare lies in the fact that patients that are more engaged in their own health tend to heal faster.

In fact, the global non-profit group, Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), tells us the more patients are engaged in their healthcare decisions, the more likely they are to experience greater health outcomes.

In general, for most patients, positive health outcomes can include any one or combination of the following:

  • Treatment that met their physical, emotional and social needs.
  • A stronger sense of well-being.
  • Improved symptoms.
  • Better quality of life.
  • Higher levels of contentment and satisfaction.

Patients aren’t the only ones who stand to benefit from improved health outcomes either — especially when those health outcomes are reported and made accessible to the greater healthcare community.

Some of these benefits include: 

  • Revealing systemic deficits in resources and gaps in communication, ripe for improvement.
  • Raising in-clinic and industry-wide awareness of and adherence to best practices in patient care.
  • Lowering the risk of medical malpractice.
  • Improving patient loyalty and retention.
  • Reducing healthcare employee turnover.

Increased adherence to patient treatment plans

The cornerstone of effective patient engagement revolves around shared decision-making efforts between the patient, their family and their clinical team. When patients are engaged and empowered, they’re more likely to follow the agreed-upon treatment plan, including taking medications, continuing with therapy or rehabilitation routines and more.

Activated and engaged patients are proactive patients. Further, they’re more likely to advocate for their needs and seek reevaluation and guidance when something isn’t working in their treatment.

The benefits don’t stop there. When patients are engaged and adhere to their treatment plans, it can:

  • Lead to positive lifestyle changes.
  • Inspire them to continue communicating with their provider about their conditions, any issues that might arise, new treatment options and so on.
  • Empower them to seek preventative care.
  • Reduce the likelihood of readmissions and hospitalizations.
  • Decrease medical costs for patients and across the healthcare industry.

Stronger patient-provider communication

Empathy is necessary to achieve and sustain shared decision-making between a patient and their provider.  Patients want the opportunity to speak on behalf of their needs. Likewise, they need health professionals who provide accessible patient communication channels and extend an empathetic ear when they self-advocate.

Using your screens to think outside the box 

Patient engagement won’t improve unless your patients have access to the right tools and resources to help them along their journey.

UPshow Health is the leading on-premise digital patient engagement platform that can power your health facility’s screens with the resources and communication channels you need to empower — and better engage — your patients.

Share important information with displays that command attention 

To make the most of the short amount of time you have with your patients, you’ll need to make every minute they’re with you count and do it in a dynamic way.

With the aid of UPshow’s Canva integration and pre-made design templates, you can create content such as:

  • Displays that detail new or amended hours of operation.
  • Educational resources, healthy lifestyle tips, holistic or alternative remedies and more.
  • Patient announcements regarding vaccines, school-related health bulletins and foreign travel health advisories.
  • Customizable general or medical-oriented trivia games.
  • Introduce new clinical staff hires.
  • Spotlight patients and families to bolster a sense of community.
  • Showcase new health products, services and therapies with UPshow’s fixed-panel and multi-panel displays that all patients will see, no matter when they enter or leave.

Improve patient engagement by using QR codes to improve patient communication

One of the pillars of strong patient engagement is accessible and fluid communication between patients and their healthcare team. UPshow Health’s reach transcends the boundaries of your screens, allowing you to engage patients on their phones and personal devices.

With the help of the QR Code campaign creator, your healthcare facility can give your patients easy access to:

  • Your website and social media channels.
  • Online patient portal.
  • Mobile app.
  • Off-hours or around-the-clock medical professional chat forum.
  • Your digital healthcare storefront, where they can browse all of your products and services.
  • Patient feedback surveys to improve your patient engagement and satisfaction efforts.

Transform your patients’ experiences with UPshow

If patients aren’t engaged or satisfied on their healthcare journey, it can inhibit them from reaching their desired health outcomes. That’s a lose-lose for them, your facility and the healthcare industry as a whole which is why it is so important for administrative authorities to learn how to improve the patient experience at their healthcare facilities.

Empower your patients with UPshow Health and outfit them with the tools and resources they need to rise as the primary decision-makers on their health and wellness journey.Try a risk-free demo today, and discover the benefits higher patient engagement and retention can bring for your patients, clinic and the healthcare industry.

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