The Wazzups and Fist Bumps of Communicating with Patients

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In this day and age, communicating with one another is really all about the fist bump. This is because now, we live, work and play in a casual environment, with technology at our fingertips that allows us to quickly connect with others in a very informal way. The new way in which we communicate with one another has seeped into the healthcare industry. Consumers are seeking easy, convenient and informal ways of connecting with their providers, especially between office visits. 

Healthgrades recently introduced CareChats, a digital solution that allows patients and providers to communicate between visits. The new offering, created in partnership with Conversa, provides hospitals and providers the ability to engage and support patients using text and email messaging, in a cutting-edge chatbot conversational experience. CareChats initiates conversations with enrolled patients about their condition management, provides encouragement and education, sets health goals and tracks progress. At launch, CareChats are available for chronic condition management, pre and post-surgery, lifestyle health coaching and personal development. Year-long conversations were created by professional writers and reviewed by physicians to ensure a conversational tone and clinical relevance.

In fact, there is a conversation that starts with “U up?” 

CareChats use many informal conversational starters, such as “hey,” “hola,” “u ok,” “wazzup” and “me again.” One of the edgiest chat bots (CATE) is most likely to use these type of conversation starters. This particular chat bot also happens to have the highest user engagement rates. I think this indicates that there is value in communicating with stakeholders in the way they want to communicate, not in the way we want to communicate. 

In addition to these conversation starters, CareChats also uses rewards and acknowledgements in their conversation with users, such as, “high five,” “low five,” “fist bump.” This is how many consumers have grown accustomed to chatting with others and now, this conversational approach is clearly engaging consumers in their health like never before. 

Because of this, hospital executives should evaluate and update how their system communicates with patients between visits. For many patients, this type of communication can mean the difference between being engaged in their care and staying loyal to their doctor --or saying “wazzup” to a new provider. 

Read more about CareChats in a recent article from Modern Healthcare:

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