Epistrophic Care and the End of Office Visits


This year’s Patient Engagement Summit covered much more thoughtful issues than last year’s initial event. Kudos to the organizers, HIMSS and Healthcare IT News.   This particular quote from Daniel Sands, MD, an instructor at the Harvard School of Medicine and co-founder and co-chair of the Society for Participatory Medicine, really caught my eye:


“Healthcare is a collaboration,” he pointed out. And while patients are demanding that collaboration – through the sharing of data, mutual respect, shared decision-making, communication and engagement – providers are still struggling to see beyond the delivery of epic catastrophic (“epistrophic”) care.

“We’re moving from healthcare to health, and we’re moving from the office to the home and, actually, anywhere,” he said.

In other words, forget about the office visit and look at all the spaces in between – what he called the “frequent life touches.” And that requires figuring out a new way to go from delivering volume to delivering value.

And this also means figuring out a way to to interact with the patient anytime and anywhere.  Mobile technologies offer the best solution for this type of engagement.  Whether it is a phone call, text message, email, data upload, or looking at some meaningful health-related information – it can all be accomplished with a single, well-thought out patient engagement strategy that incorporates the use of mobile tools to make any kind of communication personal and meaningful.  After all, the ability to effectively communicate is the key to engaging each other.  What other technology besides today’s smartphones, offers us so many ways to communicate in one convenient “package?”  And all at the point of need and convenience.


In this same article, Alicia Staley, chief patient officer at Akari Health, mentions that, “The business model doesn’t exist for patient engagement,”.   I’d beg to differ.  It does exist.  It is just new healthcare.  To learn more, give us a shout.

Posted in: Patient Engagment

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