Strategically maximizing online patient engagement

Richard Capps
Carrie Bush


One of the most critical aspects to delivering remarkable care comes through engaging patients with their needs and preferences. Novant Health has been successful in encouraging its patients to become more engaged in their health care through several of the most innovative, affordable and convenient options available. During this presentation, presenters from Novant Health will discuss a unique, but effective, strategic approach for building an online patient experience around the patient instead of around the patient portal technology. Furthermore, presenters will also outline how a patient-centered strategy instead of technology-centered engagement strategy helps build the foundation for provider engagement—a vital component to empowering connectivity and authentic relationships.

Further discussion will look at the speakers' perspectives, as two practicing providers, on the importance of focusing on innovation to keep patients interested in new features. The health care industry has traditionally been a laggard in regards to technology adoption and typically only pilots new technology instead of implementing it. However, Novant Health chose to look beyond the typical small scale innovator approach and broadly implement patient tools like real-time online scheduling, eCheck-In, e-visits, and video visits across its patient population and over 1,900 providers. The design and implementation of all of these features were built around patient convenience, which allowed us to maximize our patients’ engagement. Novant Health also maximized patient engagement by ensuring these features were simple to use based on direct patient feedback, and as a result, expanded their appeal across all patient populations.

Instead of focusing on the next wave of online engagement, Novant Health has been actively engaging with our patients to ensure we remained aligned with their expectations. The two presenting providers strategically initiate and maintain interpersonal communication through safe and secure technology. This is a critical approach considering the future of health care will be heavily focused on collaboration and will continue to focus on the outcomes that matter most to the patient. We want to challenge others to think bigger and use technology to empower human connections instead of allowing technology to become the focus of patient experience.

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