A healthcare employee helps a patient during National Wise Health Care Consumer Month.

February is National Wise Health Care Consumer Month

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HealthWare Systems Blog

February is National Wise Health Care Consumer Month

Posted on Friday, February 16, 2018

The American Institute for Preventive Medicine designated February as National Wise Health Care Consumer Month with the goals of empowering patients to understand their health care options and make wise health care decisions, promoting consumer wellness, and reducing health care costs.

Wise Health Care Consumers

According to their Wise Health Care Consumer Toolkit:

“Wise health care consumers:

  • Know how to choose a health care plan
  • Choose their care providers carefully and thoughtfully
  • Communicate with their health care providers
  • Are comfortable asking questions, sharing concerns and negotiating costs
  • Analyze and evaluate sources of health information
  • Practice preventive care
  • Know when to treat themselves at home
  • Understand their prescriptions and take them as directed”

National Wise Health Care Consumer Month

This month presents an opportunity to promote the ideals of a wise health care consumer to each patient and employee at your facility.

The American Institute for Preventive Medicine’s toolkit, which contains resources to help employers promote wise health consumerism, can be downloaded here.  They also provide a free Well-Being Activity Planner to help you plan wellness events.

Additionally, some of the ways you can appeal to the patient as health care consumer and help empower your patients to make wise health care decisions include:

A healthcare employee helps a patient during National Wise Health Care Consumer Month.

Empower your patients and employees to practice preventive medicine and make wise health care decisions.

This February, celebrate National Wise Health Care Consumer Month by empowering your patients and employees using the suggestions above and the resources provided by the American Institute for Preventive Medicine.

You can also find ideas for promoting other health observances throughout the year here, and a detailed calendar of this year’s health observances and recognition days here.


By Stephanie Salmich

A calendar showing a month-by-month guide to health observances.

Health Observances: 12 Months of Patient Engagement & Patient Education

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HealthWare Systems Blog

Health Observances: 12 Months of Patient Engagement & Patient Education

Posted on Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Health observances create ample opportunities for your facility to reach patients, stay relevant, and both improve patient engagement and improve patient education.  Here is a month-by-month list of ideas to help get you started:

A calendar showing a month-by-month guide to health observances.

Prepare for the year with this month-by-month guide to health observances.

 

Health Observances Throughout the Year


JANUARY is  National Blood Donor Month.  There are fewer blood donors during the winter months due to inclement weather, illness, and the busy holiday season.  To help prevent blood shortages and include your patients in the cause, hold a blood drive at your facility.

FEBRUARY is  National Children’s Dental Health Month.  Collaborate with a local dentist to create a presentation on the impact oral health has on overall well-being and invite your patients to attend.  Attending educational events can greatly improve patient engagement.  You can also download posters and fun dental health-related activity sheets for kids on the American Dental Association’s website.

MARCH is  National Nutrition Month.  Offer healthy cooking classes as a fun way to improve patient education about nutrition.

APRIL is  National Humor Month Improve patient education about the importance of humor for health and well-being with the Decorate-A-Smiley Project.  Children (and adults) can decorate smiley faces in the waiting room and you can display them for all patients to see.  Be sure to also post information about the benefits of humor (this poster can be downloaded for free).  You can provide funny books for kids to read as they wait as well!

MAY marks the start of  National Run a Mile Days, which lasts through June 14th.  Consider partnering with a nearby elementary or middle school and helping them host a Run A Mile Days event!  Promote your facility and the idea that running is a fun way for kids and adults to stay healthy.

JUNE is  Men’s Health Month.  Men are less likely than women to see a doctor, whether for a health concern or standard annual exam.  Improve patient engagement for the men in your community by hosting a health awareness event, health screening, or health fair.

JULY is  UV Safety Month.  Post warnings about the harmful effects of the sun to the eyes and guidelines for proper eye protection from UV rays around your facility and in your newsletter.  Hand out sunglasses stickers to kids with a note attached that explains what factors to look for when purchasing sunglasses.

AUGUST is  National Immunization Awareness Month.  Schedule a webinar to improve patient education about vaccine recommendations for each stage of life.

SEPTEMBER is  Baby Safety Month, September 23rd-29th is  Child Passenger Safety Week, and September 29th is  National Seat Check Saturday.  Give parents and caregivers the chance to have their car seats checked for proper installation by a certified child passenger safety technician at your facility.  Offer free demonstrations on how to buckle children of all ages into car seats.

OCTOBER is  National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.  Send out reminders, via text, phone call, email, or postcard, to all female patients who may need to schedule a mammogram.

NOVEMBER 15th is the  Great American Smokeout.  Organize an event where patients can make a public commitment to quit smoking with the support of their family and friends, the American Cancer Society, and your facility.

DECEMBER is  Safe Toys and Gifts Month.  Why not conduct a toy drive for Toys for Tots?  Invite both employees and patients to participate and provide them with guidelines for which toys are considered acceptable donations according to safety standards.  This is a great charitable opportunity for your facility; plus, you’ll improve patient engagement by educating them about safe toys and giving them the chance to contribute a donation as well.


In addition to the ideas listed above, be sure to utilize the power of social media to spread awareness of these important health topics and to help your facility stay relevant.  Many of the organizations that sponsor these health observances even provide materials on their websites that you can share from your own social media accounts.  Most of the 2018 health observances also have their own hashtags.

Check out even more 2018 health observances here.  Perhaps there are others that your facility can use to improve patient engagement and improve patient education.


By Stephanie Salmich

A festive turkey shows aspects of technology in healthcare.

#Thankful – Giving Thanks for Technology in Healthcare

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HealthWare Systems Blog

#Thankful – Giving Thanks for Technology in Healthcare

Posted on Wednesday, November 22, 2017

This week let’s take a moment to give thanks for technology in healthcare. No matter where we fall below, each of us has something to be grateful for thanks to the benefits of technology.

Physicians – Interoperability in Healthcare

Interoperability in healthcare allows physicians access to all relevant patient data from other providers in a useful format. When a facility has the ability to integrate healthcare data from outside sources, physicians can be confident they have the information they need to treat their patients safely, efficiently, and accurately.

Hospital Employees – Workflow Automation

Technology in healthcare has reduced internal workloads through the automation of manual processes. Not only does it make life easier for staff, but it also increases efficiency.

Healthcare Administrators – Improved Revenue Cycle

Technology can protect against bad debt, reimbursement denials, and costly rework by ensuring patient encounter accuracy and preventing registration and insurance errors. Workflow automation, increased efficiency, and a reduction in paper also contribute to an improved revenue cycle, and all are the result of the use of technology in healthcare.

Patients – Enhanced Patient Experience & Improved Patient Engagement

From lowering wait times, to improving the valet service, to providing texting alerts and notifications, technology has truly created an enhanced patient experience. Health apps, social media, patient portals, digital medicine devices, and telemedicine have all improved patient engagement.

A festive turkey shows aspects of technology in healthcare.

We’re #thankful for technology in healthcare!

Vendors – Patients & Clients Embracing New Technology

Not only do more and more people embrace new technology, many have come to expect it! Openness to learning how to use new technology in healthcare is always helpful towards its successful adoption.


What else are you thankful for?

Give thanks with the hashtag #thankful and share this blog along with the benefits of technology in healthcare that make you thankful!

Happy Thanksgiving!


By Stephanie Salmich

Celebrate Patient Access Professionals!

Happy Patient Access Week & Thank You to All Patient Access Professionals!

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HealthWare Systems Blog

Happy Patient Access Week & Thank You to All Patient Access Professionals!

Posted on Tuesday, April 4, 2017


Celebrate Patient Access Professionals!

Celebrate Patient Access Week!

Patient Access professionals are extremely important to healthy revenue cycle management and are often the first people patients encounter at any healthcare facility. During Patient Access Week we celebrate their hard work and great value to the healthcare industry.

Not only are Patient Access staff responsible for many crucial aspects of healthy revenue cycle management (including scheduling, registration, insurance verification, document scanning and retrieval, knowledge of government compliance forms and regulations, and much more), but they also must execute their vital roles while providing exceptional customer service to patients.

HealthWare Systems would like to thank all Patient Access professionals for everything you do to improve the patient experience and your facility’s financial health every day!

Enjoy Patient Access Week!


By Stephanie Salmich