There’s no question that patients need help managing chronic conditions at home and in their daily lives, beyond the support they get during appointments. Providers are doing more than ever to support chronic patients. They are encouraging patients to enroll in chronic disease management programs and assigning care coordinators to help keep patients on track with treatments. As the push to advance chronic care continues, healthcare teams can use surveys to further support chronic patients.
Knowing when chronic patients are struggling and what support they need to manage their health is essential for effective chronic care. Remote health monitoring surveys and gaps in care surveys offer insights into the level of support patients need to stay on course with disease management.
The idea of participating in monitoring surveys and gaps in care surveys is appealing to chronic patients. A West survey of 1,036 Americans revealed that 43 percent of Americans with a chronic condition would be motivated to take a survey if it would help them with their treatment. Also, 50 percent of chronic patients say they are very interested in taking remote health monitoring surveys.
It is not surprising that patients are intrigued by surveys; most want more resources and health management tools. For example, 94 percent of chronic patients say it is important for their healthcare providers to support them between visits and help them more effectively manage their health and follow treatment plans. And, 63 percent of chronic patients say they want to know their provider cares about their health.
Here’s what is surprising: Despite the benefits and interest in surveys, only 11 percent of healthcare providers say they currently use surveys to check-in with patients to monitor their health and ensure they are following treatment plans correctly.
Whether your organization is already using surveys to support chronic patients, or you want to begin implementing surveys, here are three tips for using surveys to support chronic care:
- Automate – Picking up the phone and calling patients individually to ask them survey questions, or manually reviewing paper-based surveys, is tedious and time-consuming. Using online surveys to automate the process makes monitoring patient health more manageable. By leveraging patient engagement technology that has capabilities for sending mass communications to patients, healthcare teams can send surveys to groups of patients with similar chronic conditions. Monitoring the health of all patients within a practice that has diabetes, high blood pressure or other conditions is easier when surveys are automated.
- Make participation easy – Patients must participate in surveys in order for them to be valuable. Healthcare providers can make it easy for patients to participate by ensuring patients can take surveys from any device and using the communication channels patients prefer. For example, for patients who have opted into receiving text messages, sending a text message with a link to a survey makes responding simple for those patients.
- Follow Up – Surveys enable healthcare teams to capture information about the level of chronic care support patients need. But it is how that information is used — the follow-up action — that makes the true impact. When monitoring surveys reveal that chronic conditions are not being managed effectively, or gaps in care surveys show that patients need more guidance to follow treatment plans, healthcare teams can intervene and respond with appropriate support.
Surveys can be a valuable chronic disease management tool. To learn more about using gaps in care surveys and remote health monitoring surveys to support patients, download Using Patient Surveys to Improve Chronic Care Management.