Visiting hospitals can be an intimidating experience. As a result, virtually every hospital is giving priority to delivering quality patient-cared care and support today. By doing so, they go beyond paying attention to each individual’s unique health requirements. Physicians must set their minds and culture to thinking of their patients as people versus just as their diagnoses or complaints.
They also consider the physical, mental, emotional, social, and mental health aspects of that person’s well-being to achieve optimal health outcomes. It is a holistic approach that calls for active participation and collaborative decision-making from both patients and care teams.
So, how does it work? Practitioners begin with anticipating the fear, anxiety, or frustration that patients may experience when receiving care. They put their patients at the forefront of everything they do and reassure them at every stage to maximize comfort levels. Now, with smart technology and modern information delivery tools becoming increasingly accessible, the possibilities of providing end-to-end care as well as treatment are virtually endless. Examples include telehealth, digital appointment scheduling apps, virtual check-ins, and patient portals that are emerging as key technologies in the healthcare industry. These are all about delivering great experiences.
For instance, imagine a situation in which patients become worried when they cannot connect with anyone from a hospital from a phone. Or, what about having to wait for doctors in the exam room when they want immediate attention? This is where digital healthcare solutions streamline processes and expedite the amount of time it takes for physicians to see their patients or communicate with them.
Here is the question: How can healthcare organizations implement patient-centered care to achieve higher rates of patient engagement and satisfaction? Let’s find out next.
Hucu.ai is built to support patient-centered care
Develop Meaningful Relationships
Building and nurturing a patient-provider relationship is an important part of patient-centered care. Clinicians must gain their patients’ trust and utilize a shared-decision making model so that everyone can work together to achieve the desired outcomes. This includes practicing empathy and active listening, being mindful of past medical history (PMH), treating patients with respect and dignity, and demonstrating sensitivity to their cultural values. Simply encouraging patients to share their feelings and talk about their families, hobbies, or interests helps them feel at ease. Doing so communicates your desire to know more about them as a person and not only a patient. Also, let’s not forget the importance of keeping one’s word and meeting expectations to build rapport with patients.
Alleviate Fear & Anxiety
Medical practices often involve patients who are fearful of the unknown, of being humiliated, and of being helpless or vulnerable. Caregivers should focus on patient anxiety over physical disability, prognosis, the emotional impact of illness on themselves and their family, as well as the financial impact of their treatment. This means exploring a patient’s fear of being unable to pay high medical fees, dealing with a disappointing clinical outcome, and having to stay in a hospital environment.
To address all these, health specialists should promote a culture of collaboration and open communication where patients participate in the care delivery process. This will enable practitioners to personalize care plans and strategies that align with patient needs, preferences, as well as lifestyles. For instance, traditionally, nurses specializing in treating overweight patients with diabetes would simply hand over meal plans and exercise regimen without consulting first.
They would then tell their patients the changes they must make and why. In a patient-centered approach, both sides brainstorm and identify activities that match patient lifestyles. This builds a positive relationship, enables more informed decision-making, and better supports health goals as patients are more likely to follow their healthcare provider’s recommendations.
Offer End-To-End Services
Successful healthcare institutions adopt several approaches to delivering patient-centered care that works in the best interests of both parties. Doctors and nurses should make hourly rounds to conduct a range of duties. These include checking on patients, administering pain medicines, performing therapies, addressing bathroom needs, positioning them comfortably in bed, and ensuring that personal belongings are within reach.
On admission, patients must receive a file with important information that will be of use when they leave, such as symptoms to look out for, duration of medications, etc. Nurses should make post-discharge phone calls to check on the status of patients and offer self-care instructions.
It is also necessary to implement bedside shift reports in the presence of the patient and their family so they can ask questions, verify information, and clarify any concerns. Care boards in patient rooms must list data including new and existing medications, tests, and methods of contacting practitioners. Last but not least, hospitals have to benchmark standards of performance for staff to follow. These consist of responding proactively to patients and understanding how to address complaints or concerns as well as emergency situations.
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