How Digital Guidance Enables Patient-Centered Care [Future Of Health]

How Digital Guidance Enables Patient-Centered Care [Future Of Health]

New tools and services are helping individuals better navigate through the healthcare system before, during and after their treatments.

  • 4 march 2014

Most of us have been there. The unenviable position of mulling over an operation the night before, or sitting in an examination room for test results, which never seem to arrive fast enough. Amidst the angst, stress and the disorientation that can accompany a trip to the hospital or doctor’s office, we do our best to ask the right questions, but we are often ill-prepared for what lies ahead in our healthcare journey, mostly because the expectations around these interactions haven’t been properly defined.

As patients look to become more involved in understanding what to expect from their treatment, many look to the Internet as a resource, but this of course poses its own limitations. Choosing from conflicting pieces of advice or trusting a faceless website leaves people craving simplicity or a personalized solution. In response, the same search and discover activities relegated to chat forums or search engine queries has grown up into sophisticated services that offer digital guidance throughout all steps in the patient experience, answering key questions and alleviating concern.

In a trend PSFK Labs is calling Care Guidance in our latest Future of Health report, we look at how patient-centered tools are helping people better navigate through the healthcare system before, during and after their treatments. These personalized resources are designed to provide individuals with the right information as they need it, explaining available options, preparing them for upcoming procedures and ensuring adherence to necessary steps afterwards to ensure a better end-to-end experience.


The trend towards patients becoming more involved in guiding and understanding their own treatment options should lead to more personalized products and services in the medical field. According to Gary Shapiro, President and CEO of Consumer Electronics Association, “The current sea of change in healthcare is resulting in far more consumer-centric products and services. Design innovations, advancing technology and the widespread adoption of mobile devices mean consumer-centric care is now possible in ways we never imagined. Continued innovation promises to increase personalization, reduce costs and provide novel new solutions to our healthcare challenges.” With added tools and resources, patients should begin feeling empowered understand their health procedures at all stages of the process.

To ensure a better end to end experience for patients, a number of services are helping them better navigate through the healthcare system before, during and after their treatments. As patients increasingly become more involved in guiding and understanding their own treatment options and sharing their support with peers, these personalized tools are providing people with the right information on demand at different stages.

As health-related brands and medical providers look to for ways to better connect with and support patients throughout their journey, these questions can help get them started:

  • At what points during a person’s day can you meet them with relevant questions and advice to help them better manage ongoing symptoms and conditions?
  • How can you further personalize this information to ensure that every individual is receiving the most relevant information?
  • How can you relay this information in a way that is both actionable and easy to understand?
  • Are their opportunities to connect patients with live support to have their questions and concerns answered?
  • How can these platforms be used to facilitate feedback between patients and key stakeholders in their care?

With the help of our partner Boehringer Ingelheim, PSFK Labs has released the latest Future of Health Report, which highlights the four major themes and 13 emerging trends shaping the evolving global landscape of healthcare. To see more insights and thoughts on the Future of Health visit the PSFK page.

Contributed by Tim Ryan


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