Here are four must-know key performance indicators that providers should know and use when looking to improve outcomes and the patient experience.
Key performance indicators (KPIs) have always mattered, but they are now more relevant than ever in the healthcare industry, as providers make the shift to value-based care. While there are many common types of KPI to track financial success—such as revenue or profit per employee—there are other types of KPIs that can be used to measure patient success and care effectiveness. Here are four must-know KPIs that providers should know and use when looking to improve outcomes and the patient experience.
Patient Dropout Rrate
Value-based care increasingly ties compensation to good outcomes. And since patient participation in their treatment plan is certainly tied to outcomes, it’s critical to know your patient dropout rate. This metric tells you how many patients have dropped out of your care before completing their treatment plan. There are a multitude of reasons why patients may quit care before finishing their treatment plan, from scheduling conflicts to a lack of confidence in their treatment plan.
So what to do if your patient dropout rate is higher than you’d like? Focus on improving patient engagement. Digital communication tools, appointment reminders, and progress reports can help keep patients engaged throughout their care journey. Also, patients may be more motivated to stick with their care plan when they know their provider is getting data on their progress outside of the office. Monitoring patient progress can become more complicated in hybrid settings, but remote therapeutic monitoring (RTM) is a great way to rectify that challenge. RTM can help keep patients informed about their care plans and providers can monitor progress, thus reducing dropout.
Patients who are satisfied with their care are more likely to recommend their provider than those who aren’t. Providers can use Net Promoter Score (NPS) tracking as one way to know whether or not current patients are happy with their care. It is used to gauge customer loyalty and satisfaction by asking: “On a scale from 0 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this company to a friend or colleague?” Tracking NPS throughout a patient’s care plan—not just at the end—is essential, as it can be an early indicator of patient engagement.
Acquiring NPS scores is an excellent way to garner feedback to help improve the patient experience. Engaging patients with their care programs, acting on feedback, and sharing data-driven progress reports can all help drive better patient satisfaction and loyalty rates.
When it comes to the number of patients a provider sees per day, more does not always equal better. In fact, high patient volume can contribute to lower-quality care, poor patient experience, and even provider burnout. And with value-based care placing so much emphasis on good outcomes, providers may need to double down on strengthening relationships with their existing patients.
The right technology can help providers be more efficient and automate tasks to provide a better experience without having to compromise on volume. By digitizing data capture or automating communications, health systems can free up time, so providers have more time to see patients. For example, smart wearable technology can track biometrics and automatically add them to a patient’s record to save time — giving the provider room to focus on the patient rather than documentation. When providers have time to build relationships with their patients, patients are motivated to continue their courses of care, and thus have better outcomes.
Patient Portal Engagement
Many patients have care plans that require at-home participation, such as rehab exercises, biometrics monitoring, or other self-driven treatment goals. In these cases, having patients track their progress in a patient portal can help determine if they are adhering to their care plan and if they are making progress.
Patient portal engagement can be measured through logins and communication check-ins. Access to robust patient portals can be very impactful for patients during their care journey. These tools allow patients to see their results in a tangible form, which can give them additional motivation to follow their care plan and stay engaged. A 2022 report on patient experience by WebPT found communication is the single most important factor contributing to patient-perceived success—yet, only 30% of patients report receiving regular communications between appointments.
But what if patients aren’t maximizing their use of available portals? Smart wearables, combined with RTM, can be used to capture and visualize progress—a huge motivator for patients. They don’t simply feel better; they can actually see their progress. Patients who have home exercises or require behavior changes can be further motivated through gamification. Adding exercises in the form of games can make the process more enjoyable for the patient and keep them further engaged. As patients see their progress, they become more motivated to stick with their care plan.
Using clear performance tracking eliminates vagueness around clinical and business success, allowing providers to compare their organization’s progress over varying periods. By providing solid numbers, KPIs show areas of improvement and need to be refined. Using patient dropout rate, patient loyalty, patient volume, and portal engagement as KPIs are effective ways of measuring patient engagement. Most importantly, they can inform data-driven decisions—all while improving patient outcomes and satisfaction