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Rebuild Health in Your Community: The Ins and Outs of Patient Engagement
Today on “Together, We Heal,” we are going to tackle the question, How do you position your facility as an essential pillar in your community’s wellbeing and growth? People are looking for a beacon of trust and hope as we continue to battle the next phase of COVID-19. In many cases, the pandemic has illustrated how much healthcare facilities lacked insight into the needs of their populations and the health inequities that plague underserved groups. It also showed how meaningful a partnership between community organizations and healthcare facilities can be. We saw a beautiful outpouring of support for healthcare workers from their community members, particularly last spring. Let’s apply these lessons to build on what went right and fix what went wrong in order to engage patients in their health and improve wellbeing in the community.
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Today’s episode of Together, We Heal tackles the question: How can you position your facility as an essential pillar in your community’s well-being and growth? In the previous episode of the podcast, we discussed the impact of disaster fatigue stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic. In these tumultuous times, people are looking desperately for a beacon of trust and hope. The meaningful partnership between community organizations and healthcare facilities should not be underestimated. So, how can you help your community recover? There are five key strategies to help rebuild health within your community:
- Identify and fill population data gaps
- Establish deep relationships with key groups and major employers
- Educate and be educated
- Don’t stop communications at discharge
- Be a transparent source of truth
The AHA found that 80% of health outcomes are attributable to someone’s physical environment, social determinants and behavioral patterns. In a pandemic this becomes even more amplified, making it crucial to instill positive habits within your community. Prioritizing outreach within the community will position you as a trustworthy partner to your community, and staff will be better equipped to care for them. It will also lead you to uncovering who is most at risk in times of crisis. A key in any relationship is to be just as willing to listen and learn as you are to teach and share. Additionally, it should be ensured that teams are well-equipped to help them deliver excellent care, communication and compassion. With each patient, there is an opportunity to cultivate their loyalty by listening to them, following up with them after a visit and assisting them with any physical needs.
Amidst times of chaos, communities are flooded with concerns and questions. These questions range from the types of healthcare available to the financial implications they may be faced with. In attempting to answer these questions, consider combining both human and technological assets to deliver a comprehensive solution. Some examples of such technology include nurse call centers, patient portal, social media posts and digital fliers. Providing a centralized source of guidance can establish you as a beacon of support in your population.
:44 - Introducing today’s topic - Positioning your facility to be an essential pillar in the community.
2:00 - The five strategies to rebuild health in a community
5:36 - How to be a beacon of trust and comfort for the community
7:40 - Preview of the next episode of Together, We Heal
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