We’re finding out that more than ever before, patients in 2021 want to connect with their healthcare providers through digital communication methods like text messaging. Based on the data from a new HIMSS survey, “Patient Communication Preferences in 2021,” sponsored by SR Health, patients increasingly are looking to quicker, more user-friendly electronic forms of communication to manage their care appointments.
Mirroring general consumer trends, the survey found that the desire for phone calls continues to decline as more and more patients expect texting and other forms of digital communication to replace it. And in a post-pandemic, more tech-savvy world, age is becoming less of a factor in patients embracing faster, more accessible forms of healthcare communication.
Some of the key findings from the survey include:
- Since the pandemic began, more regular communication is expected from healthcare providers.
- During the pandemic, emailing and texting healthcare providers has increased with almost half of patients saying they prefer to communicate with healthcare providers via text.
- Those ages 50 and over want to receive text messages from healthcare providers; with a majority saying they’d like things like appointment reminders, visit instructions, and similar communications via text.
- More than one-third of patients would be willing to switch providers to receive more modern communication like real-time text messaging.
Other data from the survey suggests that text messaging can provide a slew of benefits to both patients and providers:
- Overall, 65 percent of people would like to receive healthcare text messages.
- Text communication rose by 14 percent during the pandemic.
- Eighty-seven percent of respondents said convenience was the reason they prefer messaging with providers.
For more details and insights about post-pandemic patient communication preferences, download the white paper on the survey, HIMSS Survey “Patient Communication Preferences in 2021.”