Patient-centred care is an approach to healthcare that puts the patient at the centre of their medical journey. It emphasises collaboration between the patient and their caregivers, encourages shared decision-making, and strives to meet individual health needs while respecting preferences and values. By putting the patient’s needs first, this model of care helps individuals take more ownership of their healthcare decisions. With patient-centred care, patients can make informed choices to better manage their health and achieve maximum outcomes.
At its core, this type of care focuses on listening to a patient’s concerns and responding with individualised treatment plans based on those needs. Instead of simply treating a diagnosis or giving general advice, healthcare providers partner with patients to find solutions that are tailored to them. This includes everything from accurately logging tests and diagnosis on a clinic software to having a medical team work on a patient’s treatment plan.
Core Principles of Patient-Centred Care
Treat Patients and Their Families with Respect
The patient-centred model of care assumes that patients and their families have a right to be respected by their healthcare providers. This includes listening to their concerns, honouring unique preferences and being sensitive to any cultural or religious values they may have.
Ensure They Are Active Partners in All Aspects of Care
When the patient-centred approach is used, patients should be included in all aspects of their care. This means they should have opportunities to ask questions, provide feedback and make decisions about their treatment. Healthcare providers should also help them understand how their daily lifestyle choices can impact their health outcomes.
Allow Patients to Contribute to the Ongoing Development and Improvement of Healthcare Systems
Patient-centred care encourages healthcare providers to involve patients in ongoing activities that improve the quality of their care. This includes participating in research studies, providing feedback on services and suggesting new ways to deliver better healthcare.
Make Patients and Their Families Partners in Educating Healthcare Professionals
When patients and their families are included in the education of healthcare professionals, they can help ensure that those professionals have a better understanding of patient-centred care. This could include giving lectures, sharing stories or providing feedback on teaching materials. This then allows them to understand patients with the same condition or background better.
Why Is Patient-Centred Care Important?
Improves Patient Outcomes
By encouraging patients to take ownership of their care, patient-centred care can lead to improved health outcomes. When individuals are actively involved in their healthcare decision making and treatments, they’re more likely to adhere to their treatment plans and stick with them over the long term.
Leads to Better Patient Satisfaction
Studies have shown that when patients feel heard and respected by their healthcare providers, they’re more likely to be satisfied with the care they receive. Patient-centred care allows patients to make informed choices about their health, which can lead to an overall better experience for them.
Reduces Costs & Improves Quality
When healthcare organisations deliver patient-centred care, it can reduce costs while still providing high-quality services. This also boosts the morale of healthcare providers. By involving patients in their care and giving them the tools to manage their health, they can make positive changes that lead to less expensive treatments in the long run.
Overall, patient-centred care is a healthcare delivery model that puts the patient’s needs first. By respecting individual preferences, providing shared decision making and encouraging active involvement, this approach can help individuals take better control of their health—and get better outcomes as a result.