Over the past half-century, patient engagement tools have evolved from hospital room television rentals to immersive interactive software. Today, everything from health education to entertainment is delivered to the patient’s bedside, often on a mobile tablet. User-friendly patient interfaces and powerful clinical management consoles improve communication, patient literacy, and ultimately HCAHPS ratings.
Here, we review seven companies on the cutting edge of patient engagement information technology.
GetWellNetwork understands that different patient populations have different needs. That’s why the company has developed inpatient engagement software that speaks to adult, pediatric, senior, and veteran patient populations.
The company’s ambulatory patient engagement solution is designed for emergency departments, physician offices, and ambulatory surgery centers. Its population health management software delivers education, medication information, and chronic condition management tools for patients at home.
GetWellNetwork boasts 50 million patient interactions per year at four dozen pediatric hospitals, five dozen Magnet hospitals, and two dozen medical centers. The company is also the largest interactive patient care provider for the Veteran’s Administration; their patient engagement tools are installed in 40 VA medical centers.
SONIFI enables hospitals to engage patients before they set foot in the facility. A web portal gives patients and their families the opportunity to get ready for their stay. It also instructs them about the role they can play in creating a favorable outcome.
For three decades, SONIFI delivered guest entertainment to the hospitality industry. Their expansion into the healthcare sector uniquely positions the company to offer patients a wide variety of entertainment options, including DirecTV, movies edited to be airline-appropriate, music, and video games. TV-tablet integration means that, once in the hospital, patients can access SONIFI’s patient engagement solution via the small or large screen – or even split screen. Family members can watch TV or a movie while the patient interacts with the tablet.
Allen Technologies is a pioneer in patient engagement tools, launching 40 years ago as a provider of rental televisions for patient rooms. Today, their E3 Patient Engagement Solutions include common patient engagement tools, as well extra features such as valet parking, pastoral care requests, an online gift shop, and hospital maps.
The software provider also integrates facilities management by reducing airflow to unoccupied rooms, and then automatically adjusting temperatures when a new patient arrives. The software can also integrate with hospital housekeeping, streamlining communications to reduce the time needed to prepare a room for occupancy.
Founded as Telerent Leasing Corporation in 1957, TeleHealth Services focuses on patient education and entertainment. The company offers three patient engagement solutions, all delivered via television: SmarTigr, Tigr AP, and TRMS. SmarTigr focuses on patient education and satisfaction from pre-admission through post-discharge, while Tigr AP is a scalable architecture for expansion-focused hospitals and health systems. TRMS is a cost-shifting program that enables patients to order and rent television and telephone service.
Oneview starts with a core platform, upon which feature packs are built. The packs are tailored to enhancing the patient experience, streamlining workflow, providing a patient portal, and improving communications. While most packs mirror services offered by other software providers, the patient portal feature includes patient scheduling, messaging, billing, and dependent management. Similarly, the communication pack includes telemedicine and VoIP, as well as the ability to track which members of the care team are currently available. Add-on modules provide mapping options that integrate with scheduling systems to aid the admissions process, as well as accessibility technologies to assist patients and digital signage.
Oneview Healthcare launched in 2008, and is headquartered in Ireland, with offices in Australia, the U.S., and Dubai. It is publicly traded on the Australian Stock Exchange under the stock symbol ONE.
Wellframe produces a mobile platform designed to provide interactive care programs to chronically ill or remote patients. The company’s interactive care platform delivers a daily health checklist to the patient’s smartphone or tablet app. Wellframe’s evidence-based clinical modules and predictive algorithms inform patient goals and health education information. HIPAA-compliant text messaging enables care managers to adjust care plans and message members.
A health IT startup, Wellframe brought in investments of $10 million through two rounds of funding in 2014. In 2017, the company added another $15 million of capital to its coffers.
AbleTo focuses solely on behavioral health, pairing patients with licensed clinical social workers and behavioral coaches who practice cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). The company works with healthcare plans and employers, using algorithms to identify and screen high-cost patients with stress, anxiety, and depression. Then, the AbleTo platform enables appointment scheduling, clinical notes and documentation, and coordinated care.
Patients and providers speak over the phone or via secure video chat. AbleTo claims that its CBT interventions dramatically reduce hospitalizations and disability claims, and increase work productivity.
In August 2017, the health IT startup announced a fourth funding round of $36.6 million, bringing their total venture capital investment to $57.4 million.
Assessing patient engagement software or platforms necessitates a careful review of features. The right combination will make patient satisfaction skyrocket while improving outcomes and streamlining workflows. Software delivered to patients on tablets also requires an evaluation of how tablets will be mounted in a clinical or hospital setting. Rolling stands and wall mounts tend to be obstacles for healthcare providers, so it’s wise to consider the Talon Tablet Mount. The universal mount keeps tablets secure while ensuring patient accessibility to an abundance of patient engagement features.
To view the corresponding infographic on the features of these companies' products, please click here.