How to conduct an online health assessment

When you meet with a patient during an appointment, do you have enough time to collect a sufficient amount of health history? In a busy medical clinic, it often feels like visits are too short for a complete evaluation. If that’s your experience, you might consider implementing an online health assessment system.

Getting patients to engage in their own care leads to better, safer, and more effective solutions and treatments. When each patient is actively involved and provides accurate, thorough information to their healthcare providers, their doctors can provide a higher level of care.

Why conduct online health assessments?

There are a number of ways online health assessments can help healthcare providers deliver better care for their patients. Here are a few reasons you might consider using them.

  • To prepare for an appointment: By using an online health assessment, you can request information from each patient well before the appointment begins. This is an efficient way to learn more about the person’s unique health circumstances in advance, which can give doctors more time to prepare for the appointment and improve the diagnosis and treatment.
  • To track health on an ongoing basis: Online health assessments also help track a patient’s condition over a longer period of time. For example, medical providers can track symptoms and progress through an online form instead of requiring the patient to come to the office for an in-person examination.
  • To provide follow-up care: Once you’ve started a patient on a treatment plan, it’s helpful to be able to track how effective that plan is. Using regular online health assessments is a great way to foster communication with the patient so you can adjust treatments and determine when additional appointments are necessary.

Combining online assessments and face-to-face appointments is a great way to optimize your time and ensure you’re delivering quality care to each patient. Systematically collecting and analyzing patient health information helps healthcare providers identify and address underlying factors that might be harming a person’s health.

Information to include in online health assessments

The specific information you ask for depends on the types of medical services you are providing. Relevant information might include the following:

  • Name and contact information
  • Gender and age
  • Insurance information
  • Medical history
  • Previous tests and treatments
  • History of illnesses
  • Symptom details
  • Allergies to food and medications
  • Alcohol and drug use
  • Current medications
  • Medical device usage
  • Diet and exercise habits

Keep in mind that this online health assessment won’t provide a full medical history. Instead, the goal is to collect foundational information that can give you a head start on each examination.

How to create a digital health assessment

The key to a successful health assessment system is to automate the process of submitting and reviewing assessments as much as possible. With the right software solutions, you can gather relevant information without having to schedule additional time with the patient.

Since you’re collecting protected health information (PHI) through the assessment, you must choose a HIPAA-friendly software solution. You need to comply with specific regulations that dictate how healthcare providers collect, manage, transmit, and store PHI, so it’s essential that the tool you use maintains security and privacy.

Jotform offers HIPAA-friendly online forms and a user-friendly, drag-and-drop design interface. You don’t need to hire a professional designer or developer to create an online health assessment form. Jotform’s form creation and management tools are simple to use and easy to manage.

Here’s an example of an online health assessment template for solo providers or larger medical offices to use. You can choose from a wide variety of healthcare templates, and since each form is customizable, you can select the questions and form fields that work best for your practice.

Form submissions automatically sync to Jotform Tables, giving you a central location to analyze the information at your convenience. This integrated system automates the online assessment process, and you’ll get notifications when new form submissions come through. You can also add the form link with your patient appointment reminder to streamline that process as well.

When you ask each patient to fill out this assessment before their appointment, you build a foundation for a more effective meeting. Plus, it will save time and ensure your patients get the best care.

Photo by cottonbro studio

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