Text messaging as a solution for improved healthcare outcomes

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For years the healthcare industry has struggled to find a way to bring high-quality healthcare to patients at an affordable price. And yet despite its best efforts, the industry still loses trillions of dollars each year due to medication non-adherence, missed appointments, and negligent health choices – all cases in which the patient doesn’t have the right information at the right time in order to make proactive choices in their healthcare regime. The good news is that these behaviors are preventable. Patients are capable of taking an active part in maintaining and improving their wellness. But until they do, these problems continue to plague the industry at a heavy cost to both the industry and its patients.

The solution to fixing this problem is first to understand that these negligent healthcare behaviors are symptomatic of a deeper root problem within the industry. Patients typically receive feedback on their health and support for managing it only within the confines of the doctor’s office. Once they leave, so too does their system of support. This lack of a consistent structure that is internally integrated in a patient’s day-to-day life is what largely allows slip-ups, set backs, and relapses to occur.

In cases of chronic disease management, for example, patients are juggling the responsibilities of every day life in conjunction with the often-rigorous medication and appointment schedule that managing the disease necessitates. It’s no surprise that patients forget to take their medication when they’re balancing multiple doses each day at specific times. It’s understandable how they might forget to show up to an appointment.

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American Journal of Preventative Medicine, Mobile Commons, patient engagement, SmokefreeTXT program, Start Smart For Your Baby Texting Program, text messaging

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