As healthcare industry becomes increasingly centered around value-based care following the introduction of MIPS, or the Merit Based Incentive Payment System, it’s important for practices to define what factors most affect their quality of care scores.
Patient engagement is a key factor in value based care. Increased engagement can lead to increased quality of care scores, as more involved patients tend to have better recall of their experiences and leave the practice more satisfied.
Here are some of the best strategies for increasing patient engagement in your practice:
Go Beyond Medical Content
While sharing medical information with your patients is necessary, this content can be uninteresting or anxiety provoking — especially as patients are sitting in the waiting room. Entertainment catered to patients’ interests is a great way to soothe nerves and grab their attention so that they are focused when important information does get shared.
Specialized tools like waiting room TV allow practices to create custom channels centered around local interests and upbeat topics. Additional distractions like games or trivia also help to keep patients present and interacting with the environment without increasing stress.
Create Points of Connection
Patients visiting your practice can often feel isolated in their journey, and impersonal offices can intensify this experience. Building a sense of community is key to drawing patients in and keeping them involved.
Display staff bios on the exam room wall or on the TV in the waiting room for a sense of familiarity. Decorating for national and medical holidays add warmth to your practice, as does sharing patient milestones (if appropriate).
Leverage Mobile Technology
Sometimes getting patients to engage is a simple matter of lowering the barrier of entry. Filling out paper forms is tedious, and communal waiting room magazines are unsanitary. Today’s patients use their phones to do everything in their life — why should visiting your practice be any different?
Make desired behaviors like scheduling follow up appointments or leaving reviews easy and intuitive by making them accessible on mobile phones. This way, patients can take action right there in the waiting room, while it is top of mind, and save the information directly to their phones for quick organization.