Consumer or patient: What’s the difference?

I recently attended the annual Canadian eHealth conference, held this year for the first time at the new Ottawa Convention Centre. One of the themes that emerged during the conference, at least for me, was the role of the individual in their health and healthcare and the extent to which information and related technologies might change this role. Many speakers and participants spoke about the emergence of the Healthcare Consumer and some even suggested that their behaviour will shape future healthcare services. While I think that consumerism has a role to play in healthcare, I also believe that the traditional roles of patient and physician are not going to disappear anytime soon – nor should they.

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4 responses to “Consumer or patient: What’s the difference?

  1. Zakir Hussain

    Its important to always remember that patients have unique needs and need to be treated with better care and patience.–the existing systems are doctor centric as opposed to patient-centric. We need a better balance. As a patient- i need care now! and I am the most important person…the Doctor has to balance this need with other patients– having better systems which improve doctor medical communications is vital to this process.– because if the doctor communicates to me clearly …I feel he or she cares and is concerned about me..the worst is a Doctor..who barely askes me any questions, checks my temperature..and sends me away with a prescription in less than 2-3 mins……is he/she really that great a doctor to recognize all my symptoms in that brief consultation…great customer service..puts the patient front and center of the process! him a consumer or a patient…service, and caring can never be replaced and its what we expect from our Doctors and care givers..the single most important people in our lives apart from our family and friends.

  2. Kaisar Hossain

    Yes – I do agree with that statement of Dr. Geiger that there are situations in which we can transfer responsibility to the recipient of care.


  3. Patient or consumer centred care is increasingly being recognised as a dimension of high quality health care in its own right, and there is strong evidence that a patient centred focus can lead to improvements in health care quality and outcomes by increasing safety, cost effectiveness and patient, family and staff satisfaction.

  4. Pingback: Trends in patient self-care | Mario Fernandopulle's Blog

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