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Outcomes improve when we help doctors help their patients

Aiding the doctor-patient relationship

Malcolm AllisonWe have access to a vast quantity of information. Thanks to the digital revolution, we have answers at our fingertips: Google Search Statistics show that we search Google more than 2.4 million times every minute, and we digest the search results in a range of formats, including video, podcast and interactive content.

According to Google’s blog, around 1% of these searches are symptom-related. Patients are more engaged in their own healthcare than ever before, and are turning to the internet to prepare for and get additional information after their doctors’ appointments.

Patient surveys show that many patients self-diagnose before their consultation and arrive armed with knowledge about their illness - some of it true, some of it false - and suggestions for treatments. But what does this mean for interactions between patients and doctors?

Clearly, technology has shifted the doctor-patient relationship. Empowered by easy access to medical information, patients expect their doctor to be up-to-date with the latest medical studies and to address their concerns quickly and more comprehensively. To retain their patients’ confidence, doctors are under pressure to read mountains of data, communicate more clearly and become more efficient.

Our role in medical communications is to help doctors help their patients. By translating complex scientific data into clear, accurate and timely medical literature, we assist doctors to find the information they - and their patients - need. In turn, those doctors can help their patients distinguish reliable scientific information from that which is irrelevant, unreliable and potentially harmful.

Ultimately, we all want to improve patients’ lives. Helping doctors and patients to find the truth amid the noise is an important step towards that.

Malcolm Allison is owner and director of InterComm International Limited

in association with

InterComm

15th September 2017

From: Healthcare

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