COVID-19 has and continues to change health care. Telehealth, for example, was able to make several advances that benefit the patient and health care employees, comply with stay at home government orders and reduce the risk of healthcare professionals and patients in health care settings of passing and contracting illnesses, such as COVID-19. Since the pandemic started and normal has been redefined, “SR Health by Solutionreach commissioned a two-part patient research study to better understand if COVID-19 impacted patients’ health care communication preferences. [The survey reviewed] the patient journey: scheduling, patient care, [finances and] patient outreach. [The survey also explored] automation [opportunities and where they] may exist within [the patients’] preferences. Only the second survey, conducted during the pandemic, collected data regarding patient preferences and satisfaction with telehealth. [According to the survey], COVID-19 [hasn’t] significantly [changed] the perceived desirability of automation in patient communication. The pandemic [has changed] how patients prefer to communicate. It appears that [patients are] moving away from live telephone calls and toward more convenient, digital communication,” such as text messaging. Text messaging allows patients to get their questions answered quickly, without being seen by their provider, allowing providers to see the patients that really need to be seen.
According to the surveys:
- The level of patient satisfaction with healthcare communication during COVID-19 decreased by 7 percent
- During COVID-19, the desirability of live phone calls dropped 14 percent
Click the link for the survey results to see where you can implement the changes that patients are recommending and would prefer.