Patient Engagement vs Experience vs Quality

Patient Engagement vs Experience vs Quality

What's the difference between patient engagement, experience and quality? Here's how the Chief Experience Officer at the Cleveland Clinic sees it:

Here's my view:

  1. I agree that patient engagement is “actions individuals must take to obtain the greatest benefit from the health care services available to them.”
  2. However, engagement starts with education and is a means towards an end-behavior change. Without that, it is a cost. There are many stakeholder engagement models to use. Here's one example. The idea is to move people from awareness to intention to decision to action to advocacy.
  3. Physician engagement and experience is as important as patient engagement and experience. Happy doctors make happy patients.
  4. Engagement is ultimately the responsibility of the patient and doctor that can be assisted by those who provide care or influence physician behavior.
  5. Providing a sick care experience that exceeds the expectations of doctors and patients is the responsibility of those people who provide the care , its processes and the environments where it is delivered.
  6. In most instances, unless there is meaningful behavior change, engagement and experience have little or no correlation with quality of care. Here is the business case for improving the primary care experience entrepreneurship.
  7. Experience, engagement and quality of care require separate metrics and KPIs that are separate and distinct from ecommerce or digital marketing metrics.
  8. There is no consistent agreement on how to define and measure the 3 domains.
  9. While behavioral economics has provided us with insights into what makes people do what they do and think how they think, there are significant gaps in its application in sick care.
  10. Patient comsumerism is a myth.
  11. Patients and doctors value different things.
  12. For patients, conveniencecare trumps value based care.
  13. The sick care defense is rarely mano a mano. Now it is a care team taking care working with a patient care community. What about their experience?
  14. Here is the business case for doctor and patient experience innovation.
  15. Treat doctors like customers.

Value is always user defined. There is a term for features that don't add user defined benefits-COST. The goal is not to make the average care experience better. The goal is to make the high value care experience better. Just OK quality is not OK even if the experience is great.

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is the President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs and Twitter@ArlenMD.

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  • James Humphrey

    Whenever I am going to a doctor, I do not expect him to bring me coffee, just want to feel better afterwards.

  • Adam Beckett

    It has become become difficult for doctors to meet patients' expectations.

  • Zack Duncan

    I prefer quality above experience and engagement.

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Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA

Former Contributor

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is a professor emeritus of otolaryngology, dentistry, and engineering at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health and President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs at He has created several medical device and digital health companies. His primary research centers around biomedical and health innovation and entrepreneurship and life science technology commercialization. He consults for and speaks to companies, governments, colleges and universities around the world who need his expertise and contacts in the areas of bio entrepreneurship, bioscience, healthcare, healthcare IT, medical tourism -- nationally and internationally, new product development, product design, and financing new ventures. He is a former Harvard-Macy fellow and In 2010, he completed a Fulbright at Kings Business, the commercialization office of technology transfer at Kings College in London. He recently published "Building the Case for Biotechnology." "Optical Detection of Cancer", and " The Life Science Innovation Roadmap". He is also an associate editor of the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology and Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship and Editor-in-Chief of Medscape. In addition, He is a faculty member at the University of Colorado Denver Graduate School where he teaches Biomedical Entrepreneurship and is an iCorps participant, trainer and industry mentor. He is the Chief Medical Officer at and and Chairman of the Board at GlobalMindED at, a non-profit at risk student success network. He is honored to be named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives of 2011 and nominated in 2012 and Best Doctors 2013.

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