Please login to the form below

The power of the internet

Can HCPs help patients by listening more?

The relationship between healthcare professional (HCP) and patient is changing; patients no longer rely on their HCP as the only source of information, trusting everything they say as gospel. Things have changed; people are more open and willing to talk about their health issues and the internet offers us a wealth of information we never could have imagined. That some sources are far from reliable doesn’t seem to matter.

For HCPs assessing the depth and accuracy of knowledge and understanding is no mean feat. HCPs have been grappling with this for years, so it is not so much the information patients come armed with but the mindset that accompanies it.

So how can they be prepared for patients armed with prior research? One simple way of acknowledging patient’s prior research and for HCPs to gauge the level of concern would be to ask them about their symptoms and how they feel in their own words – going beyond critical inquiry (the cornerstone of clinical best practice), giving patients the room to tell the stories they need to.1

The skill comes not only in opening up dialogue in a 10-minute appointment but also in respecting that it is their story, told in their words and through their language, not those of a qualified HCP. Through respect and compassion HCPs have the power to change the perception their patients have of the HCP–patient relationship moving it from adult–child to adult–adult.

As ill health – in particular serious illness – often makes people feel powerless; telling them, in their own words, there is an aspect of their lives they are still able to control.1 When we feel in control our ability to retain and absorb information improves, making the sharing of information with the HCP more valuable. But more than that, we all feel better when we know someone is listening.

1. Shapiro J. Illness narratives: reliability, authenticity and the empathic witness. BMJ Journals 2011;37(2)

24th December 2019

Share

Tags

Company Details

Page & Page and Partners

+44 (0)20 8617 8250

Contact Website

Address:
The Ministry
79-81 Borough Road
London
SE1 1DN
United Kingdom

Latest content on this profile

The power of communication: Engaging diverse groups in healthcare
Humans are diverse and communications to engage us need to be inclusive. It’s no longer about talking to a group, a cohort or an imagined section of society - especially in healthcare. Communication and the strategy behind it needs to be more personal to ensure that people – whoever they are – feel valued and respected.
Page & Page and Partners
Rediscovering the human touch in healthcare
The landscape of our healthcare system is ever evolving. But it is under threat from the diminishing time allowances our healthcare professionals have to spend with each patient. With little sign of these issues easing, we are at risk of seeing the human touch disappear from healthcare, we must find a way to empower HCPs to deliver supportive and compassionate care in an increasingly bureaucratic system.
Page & Page and Partners
Remote Patient Monitoring
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought into sharp focus the need to harness and leverage digital tools and technology for remote patient monitoring (RPM). With the onset of lockdown, and a sense of unease when visiting conventional clinical settings, we’ve seen a need for more robust disease detection and monitoring of individual and population health, which could be aided by wearable sensors and at-home devices.
Page & Page and Partners
The power of communication: Engaging diverse groups in healthcare
Humans are diverse and communications to engage us need to be inclusive. It’s no longer about talking to a group, a cohort or an imagined section of society - especially in healthcare. Communication and the strategy behind it needs to be more personal to ensure that people – whoever they are – feel valued and respected.
Page & Page and Partners
How a design mindset can lead to better medical outcomes
By adopting a design philosophy, healthcare companies can develop communications that allow healthcare professionals (HCPs) to better meet the needs of their patients. Imaginatively designed content combined with patient insights can deliver campaigns that inspire behaviour change.
Page & Page and Partners
How to design better medical outcomes: Combining patient insights and empathetic design
By adopting a design-led, solutions-based approach to communications, companies can help healthcare professionals (HCPs) to better meet the needs of their patients through their communications. While now may not feel like the right time to overhaul communication strategies, in the race for relevance healthcare companies must adapt or risk being left behind.
Page & Page and Partners