Communication is key—in personal relationships and business interactions, and between healthcare providers and patients. Effective communication allows people to build a sense of mutual trust and an understanding of the best directions to take. Clear communication allows people to engage with one another in productive ways and paves the way towards better outcomes.
Patient education software facilitates this type of successful communication in meaningful ways—and we’ll share how. First, though, here are insights into how medical professionals can proactively determine how to communicate with a particular patient.
Creating Quality Patient-Provider Communication
Using information by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) as a springboard, key steps include the following:
- First, the healthcare provider must decipher a patient’s educational levels and needs. How much understanding do they have about anatomy in general and their specific medical conditions? Are they willing to ask questions? Can they formulate them well or will guidance be needed?
- Next, the provider must consider the person’s health-related beliefs. If they believe that they’re unlikely to develop a condition, for example, they may not be as open to taking proactive measures to prevent it from occurring. Or, they may believe that, once they get a diagnosis, they’re helpless to manage the condition.
- Discern the role that the person’s cultural background may contribute. Some cultures, for example, believe that talking about a health condition can make it more likely to develop. Others may believe that taking prescribed pain medication (that will help them to heal) shows weakness.
- Tailor educational materials and verbal communications to the patient, including the vocabulary used, being guided by what’s been learned about the person’s medical understanding, health-related beliefs, and cultural background.
- Clearly describe treatment plans and then connect the treatments to behaviors that the healthcare provider wants the patient to take.
- Encourage questions. Listen carefully. Answer them fully.
- Supplement information provided with written, visual, and computer-based materials.
Benefits of this approach are clear. The challenge, of course, is to find a way for busy medical professionals to have enough time to fully provide the information. This is especially true when taking a closer look at number six.
As the National Institutes of Health (NIH) notes, the teach-back method can be especially effective—but can also be time consuming. At its core, medical providers will provide information without using any medical jargon that isn’t necessary (and clearly explaining the terms that must be used). The doctor would then ask the patient to explain the information provided. This is recommended to help ensure that the patient genuinely understands what’s been shared—with further clarification provided, as needed.
To provide teach-back opportunities in a busy medical environment, the solution is to use quality patient education technology.
Patient Education Solutions
When finding enough time to spend with each patient is part of the challenge, then efficiency is part of the solution—and hospital patient education software is highly efficient in providing customized information to patients. The information should be targeted to a person’s understanding of health-related information (their “health literacy”) in ways that empowers patients to participate in their own healthcare. This technology allows patients to also receive answers to their questions without frustrating delays and otherwise communicate with their healthcare providers.
With patient education solutions, information is technologically delivered, putting patients in the driver’s seat as they review the materials. This gives them time to consider the information, formulate and ask questions, and make informed decisions. Patients and their loved ones can receive all these benefits in ways that streamline the process for healthcare providers and facilities. This, in turn, frees physicians up to focus even more on providing the best healthcare services possible.
Not all patient education technology is of the same value and quality, though. At MDM, we provide an outstanding, intuitively structured, interactive solution: Journey PX.
Journey PX Patient Education Software
With Journey PX, you can consistently, effectively, and seamlessly deliver customized healthcare information to each patient right when they need the educational materials. Additional Journey PX benefits include these:
- You can curate the appropriate patient health information from the application and place it into the person’s medical records. Then, medical professionals can use the baseline data to monitor health status changes and more.
- Healthcare teams can conveniently search the patient education library, reviewing the information before determining and prescribing treatment.
- Patient education technology is so easy to use that you can make it available to patients to navigate. No specialized medical or technological knowledge is required.
- Education materials range from pre-op information to post-operative care, also including a wide variety of resources on health and wellness, safety, and diseases.
You can seamlessly integrate Journey PX into your existing technologies (EMR/EHR/ADT), which allows your facilities to continue to benefit from this software when patients get transferred within your healthcare system. You can also extend its reach beyond in-patient stays with this hospital patient education software empowering you to send customized messages via text or email.
Hospital Patient Education Library
Because Journey PX is based in the cloud, your healthcare facilities can easily access up-to-date information to enhance patient health literacy. You can select and send targeted materials to a patient’s hospital room as well as to clinics that provide healthcare services —even to the patient’s devices while they’re in the hospital setting, and post discharge.
Here is a partial list of content:
- Patient Safety
- The Joint Commission Speak up Series
- Advance Directives
- ICD10 Codes and DRGs
- Pain Management
- Medication Education
- Mother-Baby, New Family
- Pre- and Post-Operative Care
- Information on Most Diagnoses, Conditions, and Treatments
Your organization can supplement this information by uploading welcome videos, additional patient education content, and more in text or video formats. Library videos are available in numerous languages, which helps facilities to meet Joint Commission National Patient Safety Measures, Core Measures, and Meaningful Use regulations.
Schedule your demo! You’ll appreciate the difference that Journey PX makes for healthcare organizations like yours.