Nowadays use of technology-based reminders in delivering health care services more popular, especially Text messaging, or short message service (SMS), is one reminder method that has been distributed across a range of health care services. Text messages appear to be an effective reminder mechanism to promote improved patient appointments, follow up, and medical compliance.
For most health care services, preferred the text message for various reminders, which will suit patient preferences. While other options for receiving various reminders – including email and phone call – not much suitable for most patients.
There are 5 types of reminders for the different purpose mentioned below:
- Health care treatment Massages:
SMS reminders were used to remind patients to comply with medical practice like; taking medication on time, following non-medical treatment guidelines, and completing vaccinations or attend a clinical appointment.
Mostly the Reminders for appointment were used to increase presence at the clinic and minimize the rate of advance cancellations (as opposed to not showing up).
According to research the impact of SMS reminders on decreasing the rate of missed appointments, including recurring medical appointments, first-time psychotherapy appointments, and completing vaccinations.
The educational or informational messages and also includes motivational or supportive messages in SMS reminders to better care.
- Appointment reminders messages:
SMS appointment reminders help to increase appointment attendance, and decrease missed appointments or increased cancellations ahead of time.
Use of appointment reminders in a variety of settings, including primary care, dental care, and psychotherapy clinics.
Some reachers suggest using SMS messages as an appointment reminder mechanism due to its ease and relative inexpensiveness.
- Medicine dosage and timing reminder messages:
For most common that the medicine dose (number) and timing of messages were individually customized based on the patients' medication or treatment schedule.
Medication reminders were auto-sent at the scheduled medication time.
- Medication, treatment, and vaccination adherence messages:
The most common application of SMS reminders is for medical compliance reminders. Include a medication on time, infection re-testing, and to complete vaccinations.
Medical compliance reminders were found to improve when using an SMS-reminder intervention in 85%.
- Miscellaneous messages:
Miscellaneous reminder messages are supportive and better outcomes.
- Exercise and Weight Loss: The impact of SMS reminders on exercise and weight loss found improvements in exercise frequency, exercise consistency, or weight loss for individuals receiving reminders.
- Toothbrushing: The impact of SMS reminders on the amount of plaque and level of oral hygiene in adolescents and young adults decrease the amount of plaque on their teeth which improves their level of oral hygiene.
- Diabetes: The impact of reminders on adults were effective at increasing patient-perceived diabetes knowledge and injection skill.
- Blood pressure: The impact of SMS reminders on adults for regular monitoring and measuring Blood.
Benefits of SMS reminders in Medical Practice
There are many benefits of SMS reminders in the health care system. For effective communication, SMS reminder is the best tool to improve patients' experience. SMS messages are relatively inexpensive, easily customized, automatically sent directly to individuals, and a part of many individuals' daily life.
The Negative aspects of SMS reminders
- To help improve health care services.
- To decrease the rate of missed appointments.
- To help individuals with schizophrenia who need additional support or structure to remember things or to engage in a behavior.
- Medical professionals can easily guide their treatment.
A risk found to use SMS in the health care system is Patient confidentiality. To overcome that use an encrypted messaging application, However, SMS is an inherently insecure system technology.
One drawback is individuals not reading the messages they've received.
Another drawback is the possibility that recipients may become annoyed at receiving multiple messages over time.
Very promising findings to the use of SMS reminders in health care. SMS reminders provide an inexpensive, easily implemented, and automated method to help increase medical compliance and improve appointment attendance and also more engagement of patients. Additionally, may be helpful in improving memory and behavior change.