February is National Wise Health Care Consumer Month
HealthWare Systems Blog
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:
- Educating them about preventive medicine and self-care
- Improving patient engagement using tools like social media, texting, and health apps
- Providing price transparency to assist patients in making wise health care decisions regarding where to seek care
- Addressing health insurance confusion, which is a major obstacle to becoming a wise health care consumer
- Offering financial assistance screening and financial counseling to help patients find all potential funding sources available to them
- Assisting patients with the financial assistance application process
- Ensuring true interoperability, which will enable patients to successfully navigate between health systems and providers
- Building a culture of patient advocacy at your facility
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.