In chronic disease, optimal management involves partnership between the health consumer and the health professional. This partnership leads to collaborative treatment plans, greater adherence to treatment and improved general health.1
Information and education are important aspects of this collaboration and many health consumers now have access to enormous volumes of information through the world wide web.
Quality vs. Quantity
However, a quick search for a disease or chronic condition will reveal the quality of health information leaves a lot to be desired. Sure, anecdotal material is readily available on the internet (eg; disease management forums, alternative therapy options, consumer developed websites or ‘wikis’). But there is no way to regulate the content, meaning this information is often ‘low q for quality’.
People who have recently been diagnosed with a chronic disease tend to seek information and desire an active role in managing their own health.² A few posts ago, we introduced the internet-savvy patient (ISP). These patients are not only internet savvy, they are connected across all social media platforms.
If quality, evidence-based and clinically relevant information is harder to find for the average health consumer, they’ll go somewhere else. Increasingly, social media networks such as Twitter and Facebook have become the first stop for people wanting to connect with the right information first time, and in real time.
That’s why we are here. To provide just that. First time, real time.
‘High Q for Quality’ – evidence-based, clinically relevant information from your practice to your patients. Giving your patients the information that is relevant to them with links to approved websites and articles that match their condition.
Increasing use of social media for health
With increasing utilisation of the internet and social media for health information, there is no reason why patients and health consumers shouldn’t have access to specialist websites delivering quality, evidence-based information.
Widespread, low-cost internet access is erasing existing geographic, economic and demographic barriers to obtaining health information online.
Interactive websites help to engage the patient in the use of chronic disease self-management strategies.2 It’s an added bonus that patients are now able to retrieve information and support at their convenience, without being limited to clinic hours.
Clinicians and researchers are beginning to gain a deeper understanding of how health consumers learn and respond online.2
The best internet self-management education and support programs:
▪ Are rich in engaging, interactive content
▪ Offer a personalised learning experience
▪ Contain self-assessment, goal setting and monitoring tools
▪ Record current data pertaining to disease progress as well as overall health
The more your patients are engaged with information about health promotion and disease prevention, the more likely they will be to manage their health and wellbeing. It follows that the patients who have access to quality information first time are more likely to participate in collaborative relationships with health professionals.
At e-GPS, we deliver quality, timely information on behalf of your practice to your patients.
High Q for Quality is what we do.
Contact e-GPS for more information
1. Bernstein KI, et al. Information needs and preferences of recently diagnosed patients with inflammatory bowel disease. Inflamm Bowel Dis 2011;17:590-98.
2. Kaufman N. Internet and information technology use in treatment of diabetes. Int J Clin Pract Suppl. 2010 Feb;(166):41-6.