Mercy uses interactive videos to enhance patient education


Whether you’ve just been diagnosed with a new health condition or learned you need surgery, your biggest questions likely pop to mind after you’ve left the doctor’s office.
That’s why Mercy care teams are now sending patients online education from Emmi®. With the click of a button, patients can watch short videos with tips for managing a chronic condition or preparing for an upcoming procedure.
Mercy began using Emmi in 2007 in Northwest Arkansas, after Mercy patient Don Soderquist was hospitalized in another city and got his patient education through Emmi. He appreciated the information so much, he made a donation to Mercy to bring the program to his hometown. It didn’t take long for other patients to recognize Emmi’s benefits, so Mercy expanded the program to see if it could get the same results in the Springfield, Missouri, area. Those came back equally positive, and Mercy finished implementing Emmi across its four states this spring.
In the first quarter of 2015, patient surveys show:
*87% of patients said the Emmi information will make their next conversation with their doctor smoother and more effective
*96% said the information will help them make a better decision about their treatment
*83% said they were more aware of how their lifestyle impacts their health and that they were motivated to change their lifestyle
*85% said they would take new action in managing their health
“Having information puts you in control,” said Pam Holt, director of patient education for Mercy Care Management. “These programs reinforce the conversations you have with your doctor and nurses. They can be viewed many times and can be shared with family and friends.”
The interactive videos do not require patients to read pages and pages of text; they stop occasionally to allow time to repeat information or make notes.
The Emmi program is integrated with Mercy patients’ electronic health record, which lets doctors know whether patients are viewing the education they’ve been sent. “We’ve seen less concern over colonoscopies and better compliance with sleep studies,” said Dr. James T. Rogers, vice president of Mercy Adult Primary Care. “One of our doctors commented that since we’ve been using this routinely for patients with diabetes, the trends are toward better laboratory test results.”
For those managing chronic conditions, reminders about taking care of themselves can be life-saving. After completing their online education, an asthma patient in Bella Vista, Arkansas, wrote, “I will probably use my inhaler sooner in an asthma episode after being reminded with this instruction that controlling it is important.”
The education was inspiring for a patient with high blood pressure in Edmond, Oklahoma, who promised to make a plan and follow through with it. “I set a goal to lose 10 to 15 pounds. I’ll watch my diet by excluding sodium and processed foods, cut out carbonated soft drinks and eat more fruits and vegetables.”
Dr. Rogers says it’s a great way for doctors to reach out to their patients in addition to their appointments and remind them to take good care of themselves. “Now, more than ever, our care teams feel more empowered to better serve and improve health with our patients.”