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Customer Experience and Design

3 Patient Engagement Trends to Watch at #HIMSS15

Top 3 Reasons I'm Looking Forward to My First HIMSS

Every year, the week of the National HIMSS conference is marked as the most exhilarating an exhausting week of the year. The exhaustion comes from all that walking. In fact, in this year’s #HIMSS15 Mix Tape, my contribution was that ol’ “I would walk 500 miles” songs from the 90’s.

Top 3 Reasons I'm Looking Forward to My First HIMSSFortunately, the exhilaration keeps me coming back year after year. What do I find the most exhilarating? Seeing just how far we have come in discussions of patient engagement as the years have past. It’s actually one of the ways I track the progress of this topic I am so very passionate about. I remember my first HIMSS conference, back in 2011, where patient engagement was host to nary a conversation at the conference. Then we were much more interested in HIE and Interoperability (we still are for good reason). Many healthcare providers at the time didn’t even have a social media profile let alone the capabilities that we have today. With that in mind, here are three things I expect will be big themes this year in the world of patient engagement:

1. Understanding and Using Patient Data

We recently hosted a webinar entitled “A Real Retail Strategy for Healthcare“. The healthcare industry has looked towards the retail industry over the past few years for strategies used to engage consumers. Lessons learned include how to use the retail setting as a medium for providing care and how to engage consumers outside of the care setting using technology. What is often neglected is the retail core competency of using data insights to motivate and incentivize changes in consumer behavior. Connected Health solutions are, in and of themselves, streams of valuable information that can be mined and analyzed to achieve business objectives.

As a result, I will be actively looking towards data centric solutions for patient engagement problems. Stay tuned tomorrow when we discuss the #1 Connected Health trend of 2015 (which may or may not be related to patient data). While I am at the conference I plan to attend the information session, “Proudly Accepting Patient-Generated Health Data”.

2. Mobile & Telehealth Takes Routine Care Outside the Brick and Mortar

One of the biggest repositories of patient generated data are found in the device 91% of the U.S. population carries around with them 24/7. That’s right, mobile. This year at HIMSS I am interested in innovations that will collectively make up the patient #mHealth platform, what the future of adding mobile data to the patient record looks like, and how those interactions will be used to motivate and incentivize healthy behavior. Here are some statistics to consider as you take your 500 mile laps around the conference center:

  • 59% said mHealth will change how information on health issues is found
  • 51% said mHealth will change how providers or services send general healthcare information
  • 49% said mHealth will change their overall health management
  • 48% said mHealth would change how they manage chronic conditions
  • 48% said mHealth would change how they communicate with providers
  • 52% said mHealth would make healthcare more convenient
  • 48% said mHealth will improve healthcare quality
  • 46% said mHealth will substantially reduce healthcare costs

Expect to see me at “Reducing the Cost of Healthcare Delivery via Virtual Care” and “Improved Patient Engagement, Lower Readmissions with mHealth”. Both sessions take place on Tuesday

3. The Next Evolution of Social Media

Early on, I mentioned that healthcare provider Healthcare provider adoption of social media was low in 2011 and 2012. The last couple of years, we have seen a tidal shift. Adoption had become popular over the course of 2013 and 2014 as healthcare providers adopted social media with a focus of relaying population health messaging and converting unknown consumers into patients. In fact, this year I will be speaking at HIMSS in the “How to Convert Unknown Consumer into Patients Using Social Media” roundtable. Stop by Room S403 on Monday at 11:30 to participate. We will be turning the room into a social community of its own in the form of a live tweet chat using the hashtag #hcsmIRL.

So what will I be looking for in social in the next two years? There will be another evolution of social media in healthcare. This will include the migration of consumers from large “mothership” social media sites like Facebook into private social networks. We will also see social functionality beginning to make its way into the patient portal. Lastly, analytics will be much more important to social media with direct ties to CRM and BI.

Hope to See You at HIMSS to Discuss Patient Data, Mobile Health (& Patient Data), and Social Media (& Patient Data)!

You’ve read it right. Even though the top three trends are patient data, mobile health, and social media…each one is very much tied to a central core. Patient data is the #HIMSS15 patient engagement mothership. Here’s to hoping that the #1 patient engagement trend in 2016 will be the Patient Centric Data Warehouse.

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Melody Smith Jones

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