Engaged Patients Cost Less

Marianne Aiello, April 17, 2013

It's safe to say that practically everyone reading this article would be an engaged patient. It would be hard not to, being in the industry that we are. While this is beneficial to us personally, I wonder if it skews our views of how many patients are truly engaged and what the value of that engagement actually is.

This question is something I've been thinking about a lot lately as I prepare for the second surgery to repair the damage I did to my left thumb in a gruesome vegetable-chopping incident. (If you're sick of me harping on about this since November, just think of how tired I am of dealing with it.)

During my pre-op phone screen for my coming out-patient surgery, the RN rattled off a list of preparations and rules I had to follow before arriving for my procedure; track down and wash with a particular antiseptic soap three days prior, don't eat anything after midnight the day before, take this medication the morning of but not that, acetaminophen is okay for pain but no ibuprofen or aspirin, etc.

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I dutifully wrote all of this down and, of course, am following it to the T. But what about the people who don't? I can think of several happy-go-lucky (that's putting it kindly) friends and relatives who would easily brush off most of these instructions, who wouldn't bother trekking to three different pharmacies before they found the correct antiseptic.

Marianne Aiello

Marianne Aiello is a contributing writer at HealthLeaders Media.

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