It’s a common team-building exercise. One person closes their eyes and stands with their back facing another. The second person has their eyes open and arms outstretched, ready to catch person #1 when they fall. Or, more accurately, “if” they choose to fall. Because if one simple ingredient is missing, the person with their eyes closed won’t feel comfortable falling backwards. That ingredient is trust and it’s critical–for building teams and delivering positive healthcare outcomes.

The trust-expectation relationship

It turns out patient trust in healthcare has been declining since the 1960s, a dynamic further exacerbated by the global pandemic. This erosion of trust comes with potentially serious implications for patient care and outcomes. Patients who say they have higher trust in healthcare professionals report more beneficial health behaviors, fewer symptoms, and a higher quality of life. Those with low trust may not follow instructions or avoid seeing their healthcare practitioner altogether.

A variety of factors contribute to whether a patient trusts their healthcare provider, but a key one is their expectations are being met. And patient expectations around healthcare aren’t what they used to be. In fact, they’ve evolved to be very consumer-like, which puts new pressures on both your facilities and frontline staff to deliver.

How engaged are your frontline staff?

Speaking of your frontline staff, they have expectations of their own around the experiences they want at work. After navigating the chaos and burnout of the pandemic, they’re increasingly willing to walk away – from their current employer or even the whole profession – if their needs aren’t met.

Delivering a welcoming, modern experience that both patients and employees will love is no small undertaking. Keep reading to check out four stats that clearly show how expectations have evolved and to get ideas on how you can better meet them where they are.

Statistic #1: Digital experience matters

50% of healthcare consumers surveyed agree that a bad digital experience
with a healthcare provider ruins the entire experience with that provider.

Patients want real-time digital communication, accelerated processes, self-serve options, and easier navigation. Health system leaders are listening and are working towards digital transformation projects that deliver better patient experience. It’s just taking longer than expected.

What can you do?

While you’re working on the more complex digital experience initiatives, you can introduce simpler solutions into your facilities that require fewer resources to implement, yet still deliver a big-time impact.

Statistic #2: Patient communication is outdated

68% of patients say they want their healthcare provider
to communicate with them using more modern platforms.

Today’s more informed patients come armed with more questions. Attempting to answer these questions using old-school solutions, like printed pamphlets, information desk volunteers, and static directories hung on the wall, falls flat for digital-savvy patients.

What can you do?

Statistic #3: Better staff communication leads to better patient care

An analysis of medical malpractice claims in the US found
that 30% of all claims involve a communication failure.

In a busy, high-pressure environment, efficient and accurate communication between frontline teams is critical to avoiding adverse outcomes and litigation. Forcing staff to check multiple locations to piece together the latest policies, procedures, and regulations opens up dangerous cracks in the process where critical information can fall through.

What can you do?

48% of healthcare workers are concerned about their health
system’s ability to retain and hire staff if they do not prioritize automation.

The World Health Organization estimates a projected shortfall of 15 million health workers by 2030. So, when you are successful in attracting great talent, you want to do everything in your power to keep them. Automating some of the resource-intensive administration out of their jobs is a great start.

What can you do?

Experience or bust

All signs point to healthcare delivery and workplace expectations continuing to shift and change. The great news is patients and employees are telling you what they want and how you can be successful. Healthcare organizations that are paying attention and take action fast will be the clear winners.

Want more ideas on how you can deliver a welcoming, modern experience everyone will love? Check out our Modernizing Healthcare eBook.