Tech is everywhere. It’s engrained into our society, and it’s certainly a valuable resource for healthcare professionals. But while technology is great to integrate into patient care, we can’t forget that first and foremost, healthcare professionals are dealing with people. Even though technology is great, it shouldn’t be the top-of-mind solution for ensuring quality care. Tech is a tool, not a replacement for patient-engagement.
To best understand the role of technology in modern healthcare, consider this example. A patient with type 1 diabetes agrees to participate in a clinical trial that’s testing a potentially life-saving drug. While this patient might be thrilled to participate at first, he or she can easily lose interest and drop out due to lack of engagement. Although the exact reasons for patient dropout can vary, most of them boil down to lack of communication between patient and provider.
Of course, it’s important to implement a software solution to help manage communication, but software isn’t going to provide that much-needed human touch on its own. A study by BBN found that when compassion training for medical staff improved, the patient hospital experience improved by up to 60%. What this tells us is that software and healthcare professionals must work hand-in-hand to provide quality care, which will in turn yield stronger clinical trial results.
When the patient-provider communication loop isn’t present, it can have negative consequences for both the patient and the clinical trial organization. The lack of communication leads to a lack of patient adherence to treatment, which contributes to poor health outcomes. According to CenterWatch, poor health outcomes are the top reason why patients drop out of clinical trials. This problem is widespread, with a study by Forte Research discovering that a staggering 85% of clinical trials fail to retain enough patients for FDA drug approval.
Luckily, there’s a simple solution to ending this cycle. Healthcare providers need to implement technology to enhance the patient-provider experience—not replace it. Specifically, technology that provides a seamless way to engage with patients and inform them of updates and progress, and simultaneously gives patients a way to keep their providers informed on their symptoms, feelings and more. By allowing humans and technology to work together, patients can get receive the high-quality care they need.
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