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Published On: Thu, Sep 17th, 2020

How to Educate Patients Using YouTube

Today, technology has become the lifeline of every field with almost every person depending on it in some way or the other. One such field where technology has always been the epicenter, but its application has been taken entirely on another level is Medical. Through live videos, doctors can examine, guide, and educate their patients, thus eliminating the need for physical visits except in case of emergencies. One of the premier channels for the doctors to check their patients online without any major technical glitch is YouTube. Though YouTube, video editing software has been a major player for educating patients about their illness and diseases for a very long time, it is today that in desperate times it has come into the light and adapted as a prominent and promising medium of educating patients. Both physicians and pharma companies are demanding to inform their patients about their medical conditions and procedures through videos when in case of need. This way, they will be able to save their time and invest the same in attending more serious and critical patients on time.   

In a scientific study, it has been shown that 40 to 80 percent of the information that doctors pass on to their information is forgotten immediately, which leads to poor application of the treatment and a surge in the levels of readmission. Therefore, to help the patients remember every piece of information that their doctors have provided to them and enhanced adherence to treatment, doctors are resorting to YouTube to make the patients literate about their on-going condition. That’s why more and more doctors are joining this league of educating patients using YouTube for which they are making highly professional videos to be uploaded on YouTube platform. Hence, to help inform patients using YouTube, we have written this article in which a few guidelines have been mentioned and explained that would be of great use for the doctors to write a comprehensive script for each of their videos. Doctors can add these scripts into their videos in PowerPoint Presentation format so that the patients can understand easily when the doctors are explaining the same verbally. So, let’s go through the guidelines and see how it can be useful for doctors in creating YouTube videos for their patients.

Guidelines to Create Effective YouTube Videos to Educate Patients  

  1. Start by defining the topic or the condition of Discussion: First and foremost, you must inform your patients who are viewing your videos about the topic that you will be discussing throughout the video. Next, you must tell them about the agenda that will be talked about, such as what is the illness, discussion on its evaluation, treatment options available, medication and hospital cost, etc.
  2. Define the illness and the current health condition to the patient: Now, when the patient is aware of the agenda of the YouTube video, you must define the problem of the disease in the simplest and lucid form of English or Vernacular Language. This would make the patients watching the video understand the exact meaning of the problem. For example, if the disease you are talking about is dengue, define it by saying “Dengue is a viral disease that is transmitted through a mosquito bite and causes severe weakness, high fever, and acute joint pain.”
  3. Give an overall picture of the condition/nature of the disease: It will be useful for the viewing of patients if you could explain a bit about the nature of the medical condition of the illness in the YouTube video in layman’s terms. You can even brief them about the anatomy of the disease in your own language and by giving some real-life stories on patients (if there is any) who have earlier suffered from the said disease and how they coped with it. You can also mention recent articles or statistics to make the patients familiar with the illness so that they can relate to them easily.
  4. Talk about the signs and symptoms: After, educating the viewing patients about the meaning, nature, and condition of the illness, you must now tell them about the common as well as uncommon signs and symptoms associated with that particular illness. For instance, if you have explained the disease Dengue, you must tell the patients about the signs and symptoms that are prevalent when one suffers from it, like high fever, severe pain in the joints, rashes, acute weakness, and more. You must tell about all the possible symptoms that are associated with the disease, even if it rarely occurs. Along with the symptoms, you can also describe how the patient would feel once the signs start showing up. You must make every symptom crystal clear so that the patient does not confuse it with any other signs or symptoms.
  5. Information on how to diagnose the condition: In this part of the YouTube video, you have to inform the viewing patients on how the disease is diagnosed medically. You can also talk about the typical diagnosis history of the disease as well as what the physical exam findings were in the diagnosis conducted in the past. Primarily, you must tell the patient what to expect and not to expect from the diagnosis. Inform them about all the medical procedures options that are available to conduct the diagnosis thoroughly. Notify the patients about the place where the tests would be conducted and the cost that would be charged per test. You must also talk about the medical equipment and instruments that would be used to conduct the diagnosis. Informing about the date and time of the diagnosis report would be beneficial so that the patient does not enquire about the same constantly.      
  6. Knowledge of how to treat the condition: Lastly, you must tell your patients who are watching your YouTube video about all the possible treatments, both medications as well as surgical (invasive as well as passive) through which the condition can be cured and the patient can recover. You must also inform the patient about all the pros and cons that are associated with every treatment and how long will each treatment take to make the patient completely free of the disease. You should tell them about the outcomes in general and what they can expect will happen in each of the treatment procedures. Each patient must be well aware of all possible risks and complications that may occur with each treatment and also what might happen to them if they choose to ignore your advice and carry on silently.   
  7. Past patients’ testimony: At the end of your YouTube video, if you could add a few of your previous patients’ testimony who have been treated by you and are now living a healthy life, will increase the viewing patients’ confidence in you and thus affect your credibility positively.
  8. End the video, leaving a space for the viewers to ask questions: It is always favourable if you end your photo slideshow maker YouTube video with enough room for the patients to ask questions and clear their doubts, in case there is any. For this, you can leave your contact details, such as your phone number, link to your website, links to your social media pages, etc., so that they can contact you hassle-free.      

Therefore, the above guidelines will help you create not only an effective and informative YouTube video but also an impressive one, using which you can literate your patients considerably. Just keep in mind that whatever content you talk about in the video must be in the most lucid and simplest manner, with no medical or jargon words because the patients are from normal backgrounds and not medical. Also, keep in mind that the length of the video must be no more than 10-12 minutes, as the patient might lose interest and gradually stop watching it. So, keep vlogging and educating patients.

Author: Austin Hode

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