Meaningful Patient Engagement Requires a Holistic View of Each Consumer | Geneia

Meaningful Patient Engagement Requires a Holistic View of Each Consumer

August 31, 2015
Dawn Milstead, BSN, MBA / Vice President, Clinical Innovation, Geneia


Without a doubt, meaningful patient engagement is top of mind for most healthcare organizations and healthcare thought leaders.  In a recent 24-hour period, there were 100 tweets using the Twitter hashtag #patientengagement, generating nearly 175,000 impressions, and reaching more than 126,000 account. This is but one example of the proliferation of conversations about patient engagement.

The explosion of interest in patient engagement doesn’t surprise me.  As a clinician, I have observed what countless studies have confirmed – when patients are informed, empowered, and engaged in their health, outcomes improve.  Health costs also should be impacted, and that helps healthcare organizations achieve the Triple Aim.

Just about everyone in healthcare – whether they are health plans, hospitals, physicians, and even employers – is hyper-focused on health costs and outcomes, and the connection between the two, and that has meant that they are all trying to achieve meaningful patient engagement.  

Patient Engagement from A Patient’s Perspective

Let’s look at all this engagement and outreach from the perspective of a fictional patient, Mrs. Ellen Hughes.  You may recall that I wrote about her in an earlier post about ‘A Clinician’s Perspective on Big Data’.

She is 67-years old. She’s a bit overweight. She’s an asthmatic who regularly sees her primary care physician but still ends up in her hospital’s Emergency Department several times a year.  To her doctor and her hospital, she is a patient; to her health plan, she is a member; and to her employer, she is an employee – all of whom want to improve her health and the associated costs of caring for her, but with different approaches and foci.  

Mrs. Hughes is likely being bombarded with information and outreach.  I can imagine her phone ringing multiple times a week with well-intended but uncoordinated calls from her health plan, her doctor, her hospital, and even her employer. Each has little to no insight into what the others are doing, creating redundancy and unnecessary costs in the system and leaving her confused, perhaps even frustrated enough to alienate from the very healthcare system that is working so hard to help her.  

We Can and Must Do Better

I know we can do better for Mrs. Hughes and the many others like her, and it starts with everyone viewing her as a consumer and coordinating the care and outreach her health plan, doctor, hospital, and employer are providing.  That’s what the Theon® advanced analytics and insights platform helps healthcare organizations do.

The Theon® platform aggregates data from multiple sources – claims, clinical, EMR, benefits, demographic, even patient-generated data from Fitbits and other wearables - to create a consistent, 360 degree view of the consumer.  With the Theon platform, we inform and connect multiple care team workflows and processes to facilitate coordination of clinical interventions to most effectively:

    So how do we do this? All consumers fall somewhere along the health continuum, and the Theon platform stratifies the health of any population to enable care team members to intervene based on consumer need:

    • The healthy – keep them healthy

    • The @ risk – prevent or delay chronic disease

    • The chronically ill – slow or halt disease progression

    The Theon® platform provides views of this consistent data to allow administrative and clinical care team members to understand the consumer from their perspective and presents a differentiated, holistic view to care team members in a way that supports their role on the healthcare delivery team.  It also provides transparency to interventions and outcomes across care team members, supports care teams as they deploy resources to ensure that those who need help, get help when they need it, and enables an interoperable longitudinal care plan across the entire care team.  At the end of the day, the care team is focused on improving a consistent set measures, all of which will improve the health outcomes for Mrs. Hughes as well as her satisfaction, her engagement in her health, and ultimately the costs of her care.


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