What does it take to create successful patient engagement?

By: Jody Madala

In a recent article from Forbes, five of the country’s top hospital’s CEOs were interviewed on initiatives to create a successful patient experience and promote a positive culture for employees and patients. A UPMC Enterprises product, ParlaiQ, focuses on technology to improve the patient experience with innovative rounding techniques, so we asked ParlaiQ’s senior product manager, Jody Madala, for her opinion:

Patient engagement is a cornerstone to successful care delivery in today’s competitive, consumer-driven healthcare ecosystem and creating consistently positive patient experiences requires consistent processes.

We believe that routine patient rounding anchored by a technology interface is a very effective way to reinforce standardized workflows, gather data around specific goals and initiatives, and provide leaders with the ability to hone in on critical service area issues with robust data analytics.

In the article, Warner Thomas at Ochsner comments that patients are interested in engaging with their own health and wellness. This is very true; however, when rounding on patients and families, simply handing a patient a tablet and asking them to complete a survey is not a very engaging experience. Truly engaged patient rounding encourages conversation with care team members for more in-depth discussion, relationship-building, and making a patient and their family recognize that they are being cared for by a community of empathetic and knowledgeable individuals.

But excellent patient engagement cannot be accomplished without successful employee and leadership support. As Bob Garrett at Hackensack Meridian says, it really is all about creating a common culture and having clear communication and expectations. Howard Kern at Sentara cites a focus on constantly engaging with patients along the spectrum but also notes that his leadership team visibly supports patient experience with constant reinforcement of why patient engagement is important and by inspiring a culture that empowers employees. Our experience also shows that employee interviewing or rounding, much like patient rounding, should be established as part of the normal care-giving process. Without engaged employees, we cannot hope to have engaged patients.

Learn more about ParlaiQ’s approach to employee and patient engagement at ParlaiQ.com