Patient access to online healthcare information continues to grow, which turns out to be particularly helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic. Xealth recently surveyed almost 1,000 new and expectant mothers to gauge their digital health expectations and priorities. The survey results discovered the digital tools and services the moms held most important. The study also uncovered the areas of digital health where the gaps were greatest between what the patients wanted and what hospitals currently offer. One key finding from the Xealth survey was that the mothers viewed online information as a major factor in hospital choice.

According to the Xealth survey of digital health information services, the new and expectant moms place greater importance on online access to medical records, online payment tools, online scheduling, and electronic prescription refills. Compared to the patients’ most-wanted online services, the greatest gaps between patient interest and hospital offering were electronic prescription refills, online scheduling, and price transparency. According to Xealth, the most important areas on which hospitals can focus to improve patient digital health experience are patient convenience, creating patient communities, improving patient education, and increasing transparency.

Institutional change comes hard, but discovering patient preferences, especially factors that influence the patient-customer choice, can help change agents make progress.