People rarely go to the doctor or hospital looking for a delightful experience. But there are creative steps we in health care can take to insert convenience or surprise into their encounters that make patients and families think, “Wow, that was great.” Or even, “This was a tough experience, but I know my doctor or health care entity is trying a little bit harder for me.”
Handcrafting in health care means meeting patients where they are. It means understanding who your patients are, how they live, whom they lean on for support, and how involved they want to be in their care. As patients consume health care in new ways, we need to start thinking outside the box, reaching people where they are, diving deep into their stories, and using that information to drive high-quality care.
Authors Anish K. Agarwal, Lauren Hahn and Raina Merchant have looked at the success of Airbnb to find three guideposts for redefining the health care experience – creating a ‘wow’.
1: Institutions must place themselves deep within the world of their patients.
2: Capturing passionate, organic feedback is essential for fully appreciating the patient perspective.
3: Health systems should develop pilot programs that build unique patient-centered delight in order to identify scalable interventions.
True innovators looking to provide exceptional health care experiences will lead the way by adapting models from other arenas. Learning from end-to-end patient stories, aiming for the 10-star visit, gathering passionate feedback, and building delight are approaches by which health care can reimagine and redefine the patient experience.
Lots of different terms are used to describe patient engagement. They are not synonymous, but often used as though they are. In this article, Neil Wagle unpicks the subtle difference and describes a ‘taxonomy’ of terms.
While health care pursues the important trend of putting patients at the center of care, the terms used to describe this goal are proliferating. From patient experience to patient satisfaction, patient engagement to patient activation, patient-reported outcome measures to patient-generated health data, these terms muddy the discourse instead of crystallizing it. The following taxonomy is an attempt to classify some of these terms and make some distinctions