Urgent Care

21 Healthcare Topics Patients Cared Most About in 2021 (And How to Plan for 2022)

21 Healthcare Topics Patients Cared Most About in 2021 (And How to Plan for 2022)

Solv creates powerful solutions for providers to offer an engaging patient experience, and grow their practice. For patients, we have an app where 9 million healthcare consumers search for care every month. With many consumers turning to Solv for their everyday healthcare needs, we have a team dedicated to making the healthcare system easier for our users to navigate.

For providers, understanding the topics that patients are reading about online can unlock new perspectives. There are a few illuminating takeaways in this data about what patients are missing from their healthcare experience.

Our blog for healthcare consumers was viewed over 1.5 million times in 2021. We compiled all of the trending topics patients cared the most about this year to help you understand what they were concerned about. Here are the top topics (and blogs!) healthcare consumers were reading in 2021.

The majority of patients were reading up on everyday healthcare concerns

From creative ways to remove a splinter to how to fight the flu, healthcare consumers spent the majority of their time online reading up on everyday health concerns. 68% of the readership of our top blogs covered everyday obstacles patients face in seeking care.

What’s the takeaway?

We know that 72% of consumers search for a healthcare provider online, and a whopping 89% of the U.S. population Google their symptoms before they reach out to their doctor. More than ever, patients are taking their health-related questions online.

And you can see the value in patients finding answers online, especially when patient volume is high. Patients can look up simple things—like which foods are healthy—that don’t require a provider.

How to take action

Take advantage of this surging website traffic by building up your own website with blog content. This is a long-term strategy that will inevitably boost your online bookings.

Start a blog on your website, and answer commonly asked questions for your patients online. You can even email or post on social media when these topics are timely—like tips to avoid the flu during respiratory season—to serve as a reminder for your patients.

Top blogs

  1. 6 Creative Ways to Remove a Splinter | #1 viewed blog in 2021 | 12:55 average minutes spent reading
  2. Antibiotics: Everything You Need to Know | 7:10 average minutes spent reading
  3. Can You Get an STD Test at an Urgent Care? | 8:07 average minutes spent reading
  4. 10 Flu (& COVID-19) Fighters for Your Family | 5:48 average minutes spent reading
  5. What to Do if You Get a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) | 19:04 average minutes spent reading
  6. 4 "Healthy" Foods That Can Kill You | 12:05 average minutes spent reading
  7. Breast Self-Exams: Do You Need Them? Everything You Need to Know | 21 average minutes spent reading

Patients are investing time in understanding how their healthcare experience should be

Patients are curious about their health. We’ve seen this rising trend in patient behavior since 2017, and it continues 5 years later.

Consumers are becoming active participants in their healthcare. Patients research on Google before they seek care, they want to be prepared for conversations with providers, and they expect to know the cost of the care they are paying for up front.

What’s the takeaway?

Patients spent an average of 7.7 minutes reading each of these blogs (and if you’re familiar with marketing and website data, this is extremely high!) This hints to us that healthcare consumers are really invested in the topic.

Patients want to understand and be able to participate in their healthcare experiences.

How to take action

Get clear on how important your office’s role in your patients’ healthcare experience actually is. Great patient care doesn’t stop at patient experience. Are you being transparent with your pricing and enabling your patients to make the best financial decisions when it comes to their care? Are you helping patients understand how to navigate the healthcare system when they need it? Are you educating patients about when it’s appropriate to seek ambulatory care?

Healthcare is confusing for everyone—but it shouldn’t be. Everyone deserves to be free from the stress of everyday healthcare.

Use these topics as a starting point for what information your own patients might be missing. Create a plan to help patients navigate the confusing healthcare system better, and will improve their experience with your brand.

Top blogs

  1. What You Need to Know About Going to Urgent Care During Pregnancy
  2. What is a Nurse Practitioner? Doctors vs. Nurse Practitioners
  3. Guide to Navigating an Urgent Care Visit Without Insurance
  4. Reduce Your Urgent Care Wait Time by Booking Your Visit Online
  5. 5 Mistakes To Avoid When Going to Urgent Care
  6. What Services Do Urgent Care Centers Provide?
  7. How Much Does Urgent Care Cost?

COVID topics were focused on getting back to “normal”

Of course, patients were also spending time researching topics related to the COVID-19 pandemic this year. Compared to the information patients wanted about COVID in 2020, most of the top-read articles this year were about getting back to normal. Well, the new normal.

What’s the takeaway?

Patients spent 2021 learning to adapt to life with COVID-19. In 2021, they were reading up on vaccination, how to protect themselves and their families, and how to handle un-vaxxed family members during the holidays.

How to take action

Keep educating your patients on vaccines, their efficacy, and the impact widespread vaccination can have on our population. But keep in mind that your patients are human, and they care most about how the virus affects them and their families. Vaccination means getting back to ‘normal,’ being able to travel again, and feeling safe doing everyday activities.

Top blogs

  1. COVID Vaccine Booster Shots: What You Need to Know
  2. Delta Got You Down? Facts About the Variant and Tips To Protect Yourself
  3. Fully Vaccinated? Here’s What You Can Start Doing Again Safely
  4. 10 Tips to Help You Find a COVID Vaccine Appointment
  5. Etiquette Expert: Host a Joyous Thanksgiving and Avoid Covid Conflict
  6. Solv It! Keeping Kids Healthy in the Face of COVID and the Delta Variant
  7. Going Back to School During COVID

Understanding the topics that your patients are reading about can unlock powerful information for providers. Use these takeaways and action items to build your 2022 strategies around the office. Are you going to do more education on how your clinic works? Are you going to introduce new information on common healthcare concerns? Revamp your COVID education?

*all reporting based on data from 1/1/21–12/5/21.

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