Increased citizen involvement strengthens effective patient reporting
The Danish government emphasizes that the promotion of health and the prevention of illness is done on the population’s terms and by involving the citizens in the process. To ensure that citizens get more involved in their own healthcare, more support by digital solutions is required and, in this regard, patient-reported information (PRO) is a particularly good supplement to other clinical information about citizens and patients.
A tool to put focus on needs and wishes
Kommunal PRO (Municipal PRO) is a common national solution provided by Systematic with MedWare as a sub-supplier. The solution enables patient-reported information (PRO data) to be collected and shared across municipal boundaries and sectors.
The solution gives citizens the opportunity to prepare before talks with the municipality. They can, through completion of electronic questionnaires, direct attention to topics and needs that require extra attention. At the same time, the health care professionals can gain better insight into the citizens’ situation and filter and prioritize information before talking with the citizens.
The citizens are sent a link to the questionnaires, which can be filled in at their leisure. Among other things, the questionnaire gives the citizens the opportunity to share what is on their mind before a meeting and gives the health care professionals more knowledge of the citizen. In that way they can start the conversation in the right place and talk about what is relevant for the citizens.
Click here to see Copenhagen Municipality's video about Municipal PRO (In Danish)
The questionnaires pose questions about everything from mental health to possible side effects, and the citizens therefore have ample opportunity to state their wishes and concerns across different areas. At the same time, it gives the healthcare professionals a better opportunity to prepare for the talks with the citizens and actively use the answers in the discussion. This puts the citizens in the centre during the conversation and ensures a common agenda and that the citizens feel involved.
Citizens feel secure and better prepared with Kommunal PRO
A national evaluation of Kommunal PRO, done by the Danish Health Data Authority, concludes that the citizens feel better prepared and more secure when the questionnaires are filled out before the meetings, as stated by Charlotte Glümer and Marie Papadaki in an article in "Tidsskrift for Dansk Sundhedsvæsen".
According to the authors, the health professionals who use Kommunal PRO have caught sight of the value of the tool, since it helps to systematically ask about areas in citizens' lives that do not always receive attention in the health care system, or areas that are difficult to talk about, yet take up a lot of space in the everyday life of citizens with chronic illness.
It is not only the municipal employees who have benefited from the solution. Citizens have also received an easier and safer healthcare journey:
“It made me feel very safe. It is hard to remember everything I wanted to ask or what was relevant. Now you just have this questionnaire where things are listed: This is what is important. It feels very safe,” says a citizen from the Centre for Diabetes and Heart Disease (quote from the Danish Health Data Authority's evaluation report).
In particular, the person-centred approach that Kommunal PRO supports, has gone down well with the citizens. They feel that they are being treated within their specific situation, instead of being put in a box with others who suffer from the same illness.
"I think it was good that she (the municipal employee) knew something about me before I arrived and that the point of departure is me, instead of just sitting and talking about everything. I feel like the conversation is about me and not about what diabetes is overall. I think that we do not all have the same needs, even if we have the same diagnosis,” says another citizen from Guldborgsund (quote from the National Health Data Agency's pilot evaluation report).
The Kommunal PRO solution is already a great success, and in the Centre for Diabetes and Heart Diseases 90% of all citizens with diabetes are sent PRO forms. 89% of citizens with diabetes and ischemic heart disease, who receive the forms, fill them in before the interview with the municipality. It is a good result, which shows that the solution works.
The article on patient-reported information was part of Tidskrift for Dansk Sundhedsvæsen, printed in November 2022 and can be read here: