As time marches on, more doctors will need to take this opportunity to use digital modes of communication, thereby enhancing their patient loyalty and building their brand.  As we move forward, new interaction programs that engage the patients must be looked upon as part of enriching patients’ lives, promoting their health and a part of medical care.

While it is good practice, patient interaction will no longer be just a “good idea” or “good practice”.  It is required as part of participation in Stage 2 of the meaningful use incentive program on the electronic health record mandates.

So, just how do you get patients to actually use and take advantage of these tools of engagement for health data access?

The answer may lay with The National eHealth Collaborative, a Washington, D.C.-based public-private partnership geared toward enabling nationwide health information exchange.  According to Kate Berry, the NeHC CEO, “We are at a critical moment when patient engagement is becoming increasingly important given the movement toward Meaningful Use and accountable care. We as individuals should be more engaged in managing and improving our own health. This framework is intended as a guide buy ventolin purchase ventolin hfa inhaler asda organizations can aspire to as they move in this direction.”

Toward this end, NeHC utilized the advice from organizations that have successfully launched and sustained patient engagement efforts, to provide a model framework, (called the Patient Engagement Framework)  assisting in  patient engagement efforts.  The five phases of the framework are:
  • Inform Me: where  tools and forms are made available to patients.
  • Engage Me: where patients can participate in online tasks associated with their electronic health record
  • Empower Me: where  patients use encrypted messaging for communication with their providers
  • Partner with Me: where  patients can provide information  to their  doctors regarding aspects of their health
  • Support My e-Community: where providers are engaged in a full range of management and communication tools

Berry goes on to say “Given where health IT is as an industry–it’s still so new–I think it’s appropriate that people are thinking about consumer engagement in lots of different ways.  These findings reinforce that we need to think broadly at this point.”

To learn more:
– here’s the NeHC announcement (.pdf)
– here’s the framework overview

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