Managing relationships over time and across organizations is better for patients and clinicians, and helps increase efficiency
The idea of patients’ self-reliance in healthcare came up in response to the rising concern that patients should be able to play a crucial role in improving their own health. In conventional healthcare practices, a patient is the beneficiary of care as well as medical decisions. However, a paradigm shift has occurred - a change from patients who simply receive care to those who proactively participate in their healthcare.
This change originated in the 1960s and has spread throughout the healthcare system as a social movement marked by the right to act based on choice, active participation, and meaningful engagement in critical processes. Insufficient participation of patients in healthcare processes was the main barrier to the empowerment of patients as customers. Nonetheless, there will always be conditions in which patients choose to cede responsibility for decisions about their healthcare to providers because of the difficulty in selecting available options or the time required to comprehend the health problem and the options.