Supporting the Healthcare Consumer Incrementally

By Dr. Nick van Terheyden aka Dr. Nick
Twitter: @drnic1
Host of Dr. Nick: The Incrementalist – #TheIncrementalist

Now on demand, I am talking to David Nichols, the Patient and Family Communications Product Leader for PerfectServe (@PerfectServe) and former Founder and COO of Carewire. They are focused on achieving the vision of a care platform of the future and using Nudges – or as I call it Incrementalism. Carewire started out focusing on the patient’s view of healthcare and how they navigate the complexity and access education to address the ever-present problem of healthcare literacy. Ultimately they settled on Text messaging (SMS) in part because it was already in everyone’s pocket but also because the other channels are both limited with few patients giving their email address. They did look at developing a new app but given that existing healthcare system App penetration is ~7% adding another one was unlikely to succeed. But in the customer/patient data they discovered that 88% had given their phone as their mobile number and SMS text messaging has ubiquity.

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In fact, I talked about this back in 2015 and the advances made in Africa: Patient engagement lessons from Africa.

Right now the SMS text message is the last bastion of engagement where the statistics suggest about 95% of text messages are read within 5 minutes of sending/receiving – wow! Think about that for engagement. There was also the additional forced brevity (as Twitter used to do) limiting you to 140 characters

As David highlighted much of their solution is linked to summarizing and providing the right information to patients at the right time as captured in this quote that is attributed to many people:

If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter.

Listen in to find out about the Incremental steps with SMS and how they are orchestrated and timed to be delivered when the action needs to be taken by patients. Hear how David talks about the “Tragedy of Commons” and how solutions can overcome this.

About the Show
For years Dr. Nick van Terheyden aka Dr. Nick, has served as a voice on the impact of new technologies on healthcare, earning a reputation as a leading authority on where the future of medicine is going. Combining powers of observation and real world experience, Dr. Nick has seen many predictions come true and makes the case that innovations in healthcare can be accomplished incrementally, not just by moonshot events. Tune in to hear Dr. Nick: The Incrementalist and his guests discuss what the future of healthcare looks like, how we will get there, and what it will take to improve healthcare for all.

This article was originally published on the Dr. Nick – The Incrementalist blog and is republished here with permission.