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Becoming An E-Patient


Tom Ferguson coined the term e-patients to describe individuals who are equipped, enabled, empowered and engaged in their health and health care decisions.The “e” can stand for “electronic” but has also been used to refer to other terms, such as “equipped”, “enabled”, “empowered” and “expert”.  The quality of the patient–physician relationship is important to both parties. The relationship is one that is built in terms of mutual respect, knowledge, trust. Additionally, the doctor and patient’s values and perspectives about disease, life, and time available play a role in building up this relationship. A strong relationship between the doctor and patient will lead to frequent, quality information about the patient’s disease. Enhancing the accuracy of the diagnosis and increasing the patient’s knowledge about the disease all come with a good relationship.

An e-patient is a health consumer who participates fully in his/her medical care. E-patients see themselves as equal partners with their doctors in the healthcare process. E-patients gather information about medical conditions that impact them and their families, using the Internet and other digital tools. The term encompasses those who seek guidance for their own ailments and the friends and family members who go online on their behalf. Shared decision making is the idea that as a patient gives informed consent to treatment, that person also is given an opportunity to choose among the treatment options according to their own treatment goals and wishes.

Reasons for discussing health outside of your doctor’s office:

Find other’s experience regarding treatment
Find other’s experience regarding illness
Share own experience regarding illness
Share own experience regarding treatment

With ANE, you will soon realized that you are as much an expert in your care or your childcare as you deal with different healthcare professional. It is important to keep your or child’s medical information in a binder and organized for reference when you visit your healthcare professional.