A Business Guide to Patient Engagement Software
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  • 8 minutes read

In the healthcare technology landscape, you might be familiar with practice management software or EHRs. However, there’s another horizon to explore – patient engagement software. It’s not just another tool; it’s a transformative force that can help elevate your healthcare practice to new heights.

Maintaining strong patient engagement and satisfaction can be daunting in an era where healthcare complexities are on the rise and patients are bearing an increasing share of their care expenses. Patient engagement software is the solution, it helps in smoothing critical touchpoints such as appointments, registrations, and payments and ensures a personalized and seamless experience for every patient. In this guide we will walk you through the benefits of patient engagement software, its importance, how to use it effectively, and tips for choosing the right vendor to get started.

What is patient engagement?

Patient engagement in healthcare is a process that involves informed, active participation of patients in their healthcare journey. This concept emphasizes the importance of patients being fully informed about their health conditions, treatment options, recovery processes, and all pertinent medical information that could influence their health outcomes. It also encourages patients to take an active role in their care, from understanding their symptoms and medication regimens to adhering to dietary restrictions and other self-care practices.

The essence of patient engagement lies in the partnership between patients and their healthcare providers, where both parties engage in open communication and shared decision-making.

Patient engagement applies universally across all healthcare settings, whether it be acute inpatient care, emergency services, retail clinics, or outpatient environments such as doctors’ offices and imaging centres. 

Overview of Patient Engagement Software

Patient engagement software are tools designed to support the active and informed participation of patients in their healthcare journey, aligning with the broader goal of enhancing patient engagement in healthcare. Patient engagement software encompasses a comprehensive suite of digital tools designed to enhance interactions between healthcare providers and patients across the continuum of care. These tools are instrumental in delivering a personalized and convenient experience for patients at every significant interaction point with healthcare systems, including appointment scheduling, patient registration, and payment processes.

The significance of patient engagement software in the healthcare industry is underscored by its substantial market growth. As of 2021, the global market for patient engagement solutions was valued at $19.46 billion, with projections estimating a growth to $102.46 billion by 2030, reflecting a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.3%. This rapid expansion highlights the increasing recognition of the value of patient engagement tools.

Market size of patient engagement solution

Practical Applications and Utilization of Patient Engagement Software

Patient engagement software finds its practical applications and utilization across various healthcare aspects for enhancing patient experience and healthcare delivery efficiency. Here are some key areas where patient engagement software is commonly used:

Appointment Management

The software enables patients to schedule, reschedule, or cancel appointments through an online platform, improving convenience and reducing no-show rates.

Automated Appointment Reminders:

Traditionally, reminding patients of upcoming appointments required significant manual effort, often involving full-time employees making phone calls or sending emails. Patient engagement software automates this process, sending reminders to patients about their appointments, and freeing up staff to focus on other tasks.

Access to Health Records

Patients can easily access their personal health information, including lab results, medical history, and medication lists, through secure patient portals. This transparency helps patients stay informed about their health status and fosters a sense of ownership.

Medication Adherence and Management

The software can send reminders to patients about medication schedules, refill dates, and provide information about drug interactions and side effects, thereby supporting better medication adherence and management.

Health Monitoring and Remote Care

Integration with wearable devices and health monitoring tools allows patients to track vital signs, physical activity, and other health metrics. Healthcare providers can access this data to monitor patient health remotely, making timely interventions when necessary.

Education and Resources

 Offering personalized educational content and resources related to patients’ specific health conditions, treatment plans, and wellness tips. It helps patients better understand their health and the importance of various care activities.

Feedback and Surveys

Collecting patient feedback on their healthcare experience, which healthcare providers can use to identify areas of improvement and enhance service quality.

Personalized Health Reminders

Sending personalized health reminders for preventive screenings, vaccinations, and other preventive health measures based on the patient’s health history and risk factors.

One-Way Updates and Information Broadcasts

The software allows healthcare providers to send mass messages to patients quickly and efficiently, whether to inform them of schedule changes, clinic closures, or the availability of new services. This capability ensures that patients are kept up-to-date without time-consuming individual calls or emails.

Simplified Patient Billing

Patient engagement platforms enhance the billing process by offering mobile-first solutions that provide transparency, easy access to payment plans, and the ability to make payments anytime, without needing to log into a portal. Patients can receive text messages with their balance and a link to a clear statement, facilitating prompt payments and reducing the administrative burden on healthcare providers.

Online Reviews Generation

Some platforms also have reputation management tools that make it easy for patients to leave positive reviews online, improving the healthcare provider’s online presence and attracting more patients.

Self-Scheduling of Appointments

This feature empowers patients to book their appointments online or via mobile devices, providing the convenience they experience in other consumer services. Healthcare providers can configure the system to control the types of appointments that can be self-scheduled and whether appointments require manual approval, offering patients 24/7 access to scheduling while optimizing the practice’s appointment calendar.

Secure Messaging with Healthcare Providers

Secure communication channels within the software allow patients to message their healthcare providers, such as a phone nurse, for advice, to discuss symptoms, or to follow up on treatment, ensuring privacy and compliance with healthcare regulations.

Advantages of patient engagement solutions

Advantages of Patient Engagement Software

Reduced Patient No-Shows

By automating appointment reminders and confirmations, patient engagement software significantly decreases the number of missed appointments. It ensures better utilization of healthcare resources and maintains a smoother schedule for healthcare providers.

Increased Revenue

Improved appointment attendance and the ability to quickly fill cancellations through automated waitlists contribute to increased revenue for healthcare practices. Additionally, features like simplified billing and payment facilitation can accelerate the payment process, further boosting revenue.

Enhanced Communication

Secure messaging, automated updates, and information broadcasts enable seamless and continuous communication between patients and healthcare providers. This real-time interaction improves the quality of care and patient satisfaction.

Establishing Loyalty

Providing a convenient, responsive, personalized healthcare experience through patient engagement software helps build patient loyalty. Satisfied patients are more likely to return and recommend the healthcare provider to others.

Higher Staff Efficiency and Productivity

Automating routine tasks such as appointment reminders, scheduling, and billing reduces the administrative burden on staff. This allows them to focus on higher-priority tasks, improving overall efficiency and productivity.

Decreased Costs

By reducing no-shows, streamlining administrative processes, and enabling remote monitoring, patient engagement software can significantly lower operational costs. Digital communications and records can also reduce the need for paper, further cutting costs.

Measure Impact

Patient engagement software often includes analytics and reporting tools that enable healthcare providers to measure the impact of their engagement strategies. It can include tools like view open rates and click-through rates for every message you send—and generate reports that specify which patients are interested in the services you’re promoting. This data can be used to identify areas for improvement, track patient satisfaction, and assess the overall effectiveness of patient engagement efforts.

Evaluating the Return on Investment (ROI) of Patient Engagement Software

How do you know if your patient engagement software delivers results for your organization? Several measures can help an organization determine its value. It involves a comprehensive analysis of both qualitative and quantitative factors. Here are a few factors you can use to evaluate the ROI

Patient Satisfaction Scores

Use of surveys and feedback tools within the patient engagement software to measure patient satisfaction scores before and after implementation.

Engagement Levels

Assess the increase in patient interactions with healthcare providers and within healthcare facilities through the software. Look for metrics such as the number of messages exchanged between patients and providers, the frequency of virtual consultations, and the usage of in-facility check-in features. An increase in these interactions post-software implementation indicates heightened engagement levels, suggesting that patients are more connected and communicative with their healthcare teams and actively utilise facility services.

Financial Benefits

Checking the increase in revenue resulting from reduced no-shows and better appointment fill rates. You can also assess revenue gains from more efficient billing processes and faster payment collections facilitated by the software.

Compare Before and After

The before and after can be evaluated in two ways

  • Operational Metrics: Compare metrics like average wait times, appointment fill rates, and staff productivity before and after software implementation to gauge operational improvements.
  • Financial Metrics: Analyze changes in revenue per patient and cost per appointment to understand the financial impact.

Appointment Volume Analysis

Tracking the total number of appointments scheduled and completed both weekly and monthly before and after the implementation

Types of Patient Engagement Software

There are majorly 3 different types of Patient Engagement Solutions –

Off-the-Shelf Solutions
Off-the-Shelf Solutions
Content Management Systems (CMS)
Fully Customize Solutions
Fully Customize Solutions

Off-the-Shelf Solutions

Off-the-shelf patient engagement software is a ready-made solution to cater to the general needs of healthcare providers. These are pre-built platforms with standard features such as appointment scheduling, reminders, patient portals, secure messaging, and sometimes telehealth capabilities.

The significant advantage of off-the-shelf software is that it is quick to deploy and has a certain level of user-friendliness. The downside of such software is that it may not fit healthcare organizations’ specific needs or workflows. Customization options are also limited in off-the-shelf software.

Content Management Systems (CMS)

A CMS for patient engagement is a platform allowing healthcare organizations to create, manage, and modify content on their patient engagement portals without requiring specialized technical knowledge. These systems can update educational materials, health tips, and other patient resources. These are majorly built on platforms like WordPress and Wix.

The significant advantage of such platforms is that they offer flexibility in updating and managing content, allowing timely and relevant information delivery to patients. The downside of such a platform is it may not include advanced patient engagement features like appointment scheduling or telehealth. 

Fully Customized Solutions

Fully customized patient engagement software is tailor-made to suit the specific requirements of the healthcare organization. These solutions are developed from scratch or significantly modified from existing platforms to align perfectly with an organization’s workflow and patient needs.

The significant advantage of such a platform is that it provides the highest level of customization, ensuring that every aspect of the software aligns with the organization’s unique processes and goals. It can offer a competitive advantage by providing unique features unavailable in off-the-shelf solutions.

Want to know which patient engagement solution would be fit for you?

Selecting a Patient Engagement Software Vendor

Selecting the right patient engagement software vendor is crucial for healthcare organizations looking to enhance patient interaction, satisfaction, and overall care delivery. It involves carefully examining various factors to ensure the chosen vendor aligns with the organization’s needs, is capable of integrating well with existing systems, and adheres to regulatory standards.

Below are a few points to evaluate before selecting the vendor for your organization.


 To ensure patient data privacy and security, the vendor must have experience in implementing all relevant healthcare regulations and standards, such as HIPAA, in the United States. Vendors should demonstrate a clear commitment to compliance with robust data protection measures, including secure data encryption and access controls.

Implementation & Training

The transition to a new patient engagement platform should be smooth, with minimal disruption to existing workflows. Prospective vendors should offer comprehensive implementation support, including on-site training for staff and resources to facilitate a seamless transition. Effective training programs are crucial for ensuring that staff can fully leverage the software’s capabilities from day one.

Long-term Support

Beyond initial implementation, it should also be able to provide ongoing support to address any issues or questions that arise. This includes technical support, software updates, and maintenance. 

EHR/Practice Management System Integration

Seamless integration with existing Electronic Health Records (EHR) and practice management systems is critical for maintaining data consistency and streamlining operations. The selected vendor for patient engagement software should be able to create a platform that allows real-time data exchange and avoids data silos that can lead to inefficiencies and errors.

Platform Capabilities

The software vendor should be able to offer a comprehensive suite of features to enhance patient engagement, including appointment scheduling, secure messaging, telehealth services, and access to personal health records. 

Looking to innovate with a custom patient engagement solution?

Sanket Patel

Sanket Patel is the co-founder of Digicorp with two decades of experience in the Healthtech industry. He has extensive knowledge in strategic business planning, business development, product design & development, and forming strategic partnerships. He has played a pivotal role in shaping successful ventures such as TechSoup, Jetpacked, Cricheroes, Petpooja, and Rejig. In addition to his professional achievements, he is an avid road-tripper, trekker, tech enthusiast, and film buff.

  • Posted on March 19, 2024

Sanket Patel is the co-founder of Digicorp with two decades of experience in the Healthtech industry. He has extensive knowledge in strategic business planning, business development, product design & development, and forming strategic partnerships. He has played a pivotal role in shaping successful ventures such as TechSoup, Jetpacked, Cricheroes, Petpooja, and Rejig. In addition to his professional achievements, he is an avid road-tripper, trekker, tech enthusiast, and film buff.

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