Using Digital Health Technology to Improve Health Literacy

Posted by Bill Lindsay on Jun 22, 2017 2:12:00 PM

Only 12% of American adults are considered health literate. Why does this matter to patients and healthcare providers alike?

First, high levels of health literacy are associated with better patient self-care and outcomes. Second, attentiveness to this can be an effective way to improve population health. Digital health technology is a means to this end. 

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Topics: Population Health, Patient Engagement, Innovation, Healthcare Technology

Surprising Statistics on Text Messaging and What They Mean for Healthcare

Posted by Debra Zalvan on May 9, 2017 3:00:00 PM

Thinking about implementing text (SMS) communications with your patients? Texting, the 160-character messages sent to and from a mobile device, is the most widely-used basic smartphone feature.

Since 2009, the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has acknowledged that texting is an easy way to share health messages with large populations.

But is it effective? Here are some surprising statistics about text messaging and its applicability in healthcare.

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Topics: Patient Experience, Innovation, Healthcare Technology, Texting in Healthcare

How We Innovated Breastfeeding Compliance and Increased Staff Satisfaction

Posted by Paula Adamcewicz, RNC on Apr 12, 2017 11:16:00 AM

Much has been written about the benefits of breastfeeding, but the overarching reason that exclusive breastfeeding promotion is such an important initiative for groups like the U.S. Breastfeeding Committee, World Health Organization, Baby-Friendly USA and the American Academy of Pediatrics is that breastfeeding is a preventive care issue.

Multiple studies have demonstrated that breastfeeding reduces the lifetime risk of diseases such as diabetes, asthma, obesity, heart disease and several types of cancer. As healthcare trends toward keeping people healthy rather than providing sick care, breastfeeding is an ideal way to keep the population well over time.

At East Jefferson General Hospital (EJGH) we took the commitment to exclusive breastfeeding a step further to become a baby-friendly hospital. Earning our baby-friendly designation was a rigorous 2-year process that challenged EJGH maternity staff to collaborate and implement innovative ideas for educating staff and patients about breastfeeding. Here’s what we learned along the way that might help you as your hospital pursues baby-friendly status.

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Topics: Guest Blog, Innovation

How Can Hospitals Use Texting to Improve Patient Care?

Posted by Jackie Simon on Jan 18, 2017 11:00:00 AM

When was the last time you talked to your friend? Your mother? Your old college roommate? Now think—did you actually talk to them? In person or on the phone?

If you’re like most Americans, you probably conversed with them via text, email or social media. In fact, a recent Gallup poll finds that texting and email are the most frequently used forms of non-personal communication for adult Americans. So is a cellphone, because even when we do use a phone, it’s typically not a landline, the survey reveals.

For all Americans under age 50, the survey finds that texting is the most dominant form of communication.

Given these changes in our own everyday interactions, why does the healthcare industry insist on sticking with old forms of communication?

Healthcare needs to embrace email and text as the preferred and most efficient patient-provider communication methods, just as we have accepted—and really, expected—email and text communication in our daily lives.

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Topics: Population Health, Value-Based Care, Improving Patient Outcomes, Patient Experience, Innovation, Healthcare Technology, Texting in Healthcare