Getting Patients to Understand Why

Confused GirlEveryone is using fancy buzzwords like Patient Engagement, Patient Satisfaction, Patient Education, Population Management, etc. to describe the simple title above.  At the end of the day, in order for a patient to follow directions on living a healthier life or by following a treatment plan, they need to understand what is in it for them- the “why they should care”.

And that is where healthcare is falling down.  Their answers center on “because I said so”.  Take something simple like controlling diet based high cholesterol.  A lot of the time, the conversation sounds like this:

Doctor: “Your bad cholesterol is pretty high.  You need to start watching what you eat or we can put you on this statin.” 

Patient: ”OK, I’ll start to eat better.  But do I need to make as many changes if I take the statin?”

Doctor: “I would, but it will work pretty fast.  Please come back in 30 days and we’ll see what happens.”

There is no conversation on how high cholesterol occurs, how your diet affects your cholesterol, what foods to eat/avoid to naturally lower your cholesterol, and the side effects of the pharmaceutical.

Guess what is going to happen?  The patient is going to make drastic changes for two days, decide it is too hard, then eat their normal diet.  They may end up with a side effect, decide that the drug is killing them and not take it, then both the patient and doctor will be surprised when the cholesterol level is still high.

The problem is that there was no buy in.  The patient is not vested in the process of getting better because they do not know the why it matters and how it affects them. 

This is where a company like Halo Health can help this situation.  We can design a program that informs patients not only on their disease state, but ways to manage it- both with and without medication, what questions they should be asking their doctor, how their treatment plan may affect them both positively and negatively- the why they should care.

Our customized platforms are tailored to the needs of your health system, office and patient demographics.  They ensure that the only messages your patients hear is yours.  Start turning your practice into an interactive center, call us at 856-520-8655 to learn more.

 

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