Refocusing on patient-centered care

Patient-centered care is spreading. I’m sure most providers would say that patients have always been at the heart of what they do, but in practice, care has been physician-centered for quite some time. That’s starting to change.

The patient-centered concept I’m describing is an effort to improve outcomes and patient satisfaction while making care delivery more efficient and cutting down on unnecessary imaging, hospitalizations and the use of other resources. Understanding the needs and wants of the patient is paramount, and effective patient-centered care involves consultation with patients to determine the direction of treatment.

The editorial staff at Health Imaging always has been interested in the patient-centered projects being carried out by providers across the country. Whether these initiatives were presented at a professional conference or described in the pages of a journal, whether they were inspired by the American College of Radiology’s Imaging 3.0 campaign or an idea generated by practice staff, the creativity and passion of many providers for making their practices patient-centered have been impressive.

Which is why Health Imaging launched the Patient-Centric Imaging Awards last year to call out some of the initiatives being organized by providers to improve care. We took in submissions from around the country, and selected five that we thought exemplified patient-centered care. This included Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, which had radiologists, technologists and child life specialists trained on delivering difficult news to patients. Georgia Regents Medical Center told us about a review of processes from a patient-centered perspective that improved satisfaction among mammography patients, decreased contrast extravasations and reduced patient falls. Other providers’ projects focused on improving image sharing or educating patients.

Last year’s awards were a success, so we’re once again seeking submissions for this year’s contest. If your organization has recently conducted a project to boost patient-centered care, submit the story to our nomination form. We’ll collect the responses over the coming weeks, and will select another five sites to highlight in an upcoming issue of Health Imaging.

We can’t wait to hear your story.

-Evan Godt
Editor – Health Imaging