You know the moment when you’ve delivered a powerful experience for a client. It feels different, it’s motivating, it may bring a tear, and probably for both of you leaving a lasting impression. And then they leave your care – what happens next? Was that same experience carried off into the sunset with a beautiful, glorious transition home? Maybe a little less dramatic, but seriously, are you delivering the experience your clients want once they are discharged?
To know, we must first understand what experience seniors even want. Have we asked this question enough in health care or do we create experiences that we perceive are best for our clients versus creating the ones they want? The sad truth is that while consumers want to be in control, they feel they aren’t. For those you are discharging home, what do they want once they are home? What’s important to them? Finding out may provide the keys to better long-term health outcomes.
Research shared in HealthAffairs points to consumer engagement as the key to improving outcomes – ‘patients who are more actively involved in their health care experience better health outcomes and incur lower costs. As a result, many public and private health care organizations are employing strategies to better engage patients, such as educating them about their conditions and involving them more fully in making decisions about their care.’
The Deloitte Center for Health Solutions conducted a nationally representative survey of US adults from February to March 2018 to identify trends in health care consumer engagement, and they found similar points – engaging the consumer has potential benefits for health care outcomes. Here’s what they learned consumers want out of their health care experience:
- When looking for a doctor or health care professional, consumers are more concerned with convenience, cost, and reputation.
- Consumers with a chronic condition are more willing to share their tracked data from apps or wearable technology.
- Consumers are more interested in using health advocates for cost-related concerns and least interested in help with health coaching.
- Hospitals and medical societies top the list as trusted sources of reliable information on effective, safe treatments.
What can we learn from this survey about what seniors want? And how can you apply this knowledge when discharging your clients home?
It starts with understanding consumer behavior and posing question to them: What do you want? What’s important to you? Then sharing options that fit their criteria. It’s more than handing them a list of home or health care providers. It’s about giving them the right options that will create the experience they want – which puts them in control.
In the long run, the cost, convenience, reputation, data, advocacy of options provided should speak for themselves. This initial act of understanding what they want will go a long way toward building trust within your health system and with you as a professional. And if it you discharge a client home with Lifespark, we promise we’ll follow-up with you and let you know how the rest of their story goes. Because we know, that’s equally important.
We’d love to hear what client experiences stand out for you – share on!