Engaging your patients in their care process and in the management of records is not only the Meaningful Use incentive program requirement but also is the need of the time. More than ever, patients want to access their health records online and perform some basic tasks connecting with the care provider through internet.
40% patients want to get appointment reminders through the internet, 29% of the surveyed patients want treatment reminders through the web connection, according to a survey report conducted by InsightExpress. The report further details about the services patients find valuable if offered via internet, i.e.
Source: Cisco customer experience report for health care
Ironically, Patient Portals are offering more than that what health consumers are engaged in now. See complete list of SequelMed Patient Portal features or Read relevant articles on the topic of Patient Portal
According to the statistics retrieved from Health Tracking Survey shows, 41 percent of 1,745 surveyed patients who used internet for reading reviews about a medical provider. It all shows a passive behavior from the patients’ side who are only interested in accessing health information and less engaged in contributing their part. Apprehending the situation, the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) took a number of initiatives, such as, Consumer eHealth Program and Blue Button initiative and outlined a Patient Engagement Framework.
These initiatives aimed at enticing active participation of the patients in the care process. The plan is simple; physicians are expected to share patients’ health records through an integrated EHR system and a Patient Portal. At the basic level, the tasks which the patients and providers should collaborate are: managing appointment schedules provide clinical summaries, reminders for follow-up care and exchanging relevant educational material with patients through online portals. Moreover, patients can view, download and transmit their health records.
The advanced tasking includes: online payments, specialty referral, e-visit consultation and prescription renewal / refills. To achieve this level of patient engagement, an integrated Patient Portal is the first step which would ultimately lead to responsive health consumers and shared decision making.