Top Three Tips for Improving Patient Engagement

The topic of “patient engagement” is very hot in the healthcare industry right now. The idea of transforming customer experience has taken almost every industry by storm, and the healthcare customer experience is no exception. What is it that sets certain providers’ customer service experiences apart from others?

In a recent webinar, we teamed up with CareCentrix, a leading provider of at-home health solutions, to help outline some key initiatives for healthcare providers. Here are three tips they shared:

  1. Know the patient. Many providers try and implement patient service strategies based on what THEIR goals and initiatives are. When the strategies fail, they can’t figure out why. The real reason? They didn’t ask the patients what they wanted in a service experience. Simple surveys and proactive follow-up can help providers pinpoint where their organization can make changes to better match the needs of the patient, while still matching the needs of the organization.
  2. Transparency for all. One of the biggest hurdles for many providers is how to create a secure, yet transparent environment for payers and patients. Now, secure yet transparent may seem like an oxymoron to many of you, but it doesn’t have to be. Knowing who needs access to information and putting the right technology in place to provide that access is key. Taking the extra step of planning it out in detail can be what makes or breaks this concept.
  3. The importance of the contact center. So, you say, “we don’t have a contact center” or “we are too small for that.” Not true. The contact center is the epitome of customer service, or at least it should be. From proactive multichannel (voice, email, SMS) notifications for appointment reminders and follow-up, to intelligent skills-based routing and collaboration tools, there is a great deal to be learned from the contact center. So whether you have a true “patient service center” or just a couple of people answering phones, learn from the innovation used by today’s contact center.

These tips may seem obvious, but it’s easy to get wrapped up in the complexities of this industry and overlook the basic strategies that can help you become more innovative and effective in your patient engagement strategies. Many times, just expanding what you already have in place or learning a little bit more about your patients, employees, and technology options can help enhance patient service immensely. Check out a recording of our recent webinar, “Five Tips for Innovative Patient Engagement,” for a few more tips on creating an innovative patient engagement strategy.

Are there any other initiatives your organization is taking on to support patient engagement?