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July 8, 2019

Embracing a Mobile-first Patient Engagement Strategy

Since the advent of smartphones in the late 00s, communication has become faster and more efficient by the minute with significant implications for how healthcare providers interact with their patients. 

Patients want to be able to communicate with their providers while receiving a personalized experience, which means doctors must invest in the right technology to efficiently engage their patients.

In the past, healthcare providers have looked to patient portals as their main method of communication. Providers use portals to send appointment reminders, process payments and share clerical and non-clerical updates with their patients. 

Yet while traditional patient portals continue to be the most widely used method of communication between doctors and their patients, patients are simply not engaged. According to the Government Accountability Office, less than one-third of patients are using portals to access health information and communicate with their providers. 

The truth is that patient portals are not user-friendly and have fallen behind technological trends that promote personalization and speed. Phone calls and email are also easily ignored or missed. Many seem to have neglected the most effective method of communication: text messaging. 

A Mobile-First Solution to Patient Engagement

Did you know that on average, Americans exchange five times as many text messages than phone calls? It’s simpler, more convenient and much faster than other outdated methods of communication. Since texting is something patients are most comfortable doing, incorporating it into healthcare practices is necessary to improve patient engagement. 

Because of its convenience and ubiquity, many forward-looking providers are turning to secure text messaging as a mobile alternative to conventional patient portals. Solutions like Updox Secure Text allow for two-way messaging to effectively and securely engage with patients. By using Secure Text for patient engagement, providers can quickly send personalized text messages about patient updates including lab results and appointment reminders. On the flip side, patients appreciate their ability to directly respond with any questions or concerns. 

The patient engagement landscape is steadily evolving as technology becomes more advanced. It is imperative that healthcare providers focus on adopting new strategies that reflect patient preferences to boost patient engagement. Once providers begin to replace traditional communication with mobile-first approaches like Updox Secure Text, especially when combined with Updox Video Chat for telehealth connectivity, providers will be able to better engage with their patients and improve clinical efficiency.

Request a demo to learn how Updox can further be used to improve patient engagement, or download our latest whitepaper “Five Steps to Improving Patient Engagement” for additional best practices.

Topics: Physicians, Blog, telehealth, communication, engagement