Empowered patients who have access to knowledge and information about their illnesses, have better health outcomes, but with many of the best healthcare resources available online, a digital divide has formed among patients. Tech savvy patients are at a definite advantage, while some of the most vulnerable cancer patients, those 65 and older, don’t have the technical skills to access online resources. Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) is changing that with their Digitally Empowered programs. The fifth and final video of the Value of PEN series highlights the Digital Sherpa Program, which is designed for people who are not tech savvy. The program helps older, disadvantaged patients and actively trains them, so they have the confidence to access online healthcare resources that are potentially lifesaving.
The Digital Sherpa Program is a real advantage for patients, says PEN Board Member LaWanda Byrd. She explains that the program helps to bridge the digital gap so that patients can utilize all the technology available to them. She says many patients are not aware of the technology options and applications available. Through the program, patients are empowered to be more informed and more involved in managing their own care.
Patients don’t need to feel overwhelmed by learning the technology. The Digital Sherpa Program is designed for people who aren’t tech savvy so that they can become tech savvy enough to get the information they need, says Board Member Scott Riccio. Access to more information helps patients make better decisions about their healthcare.
PEN is improving health equity for vulnerable cancer patients through Digitally Empowered programs. The free programs at PEN are available for all patients, no matter their age or circumstances, and they help provide better health outcomes for empowered patients. Watch the video and find out how you can get involved
Jennifer Lessinger is a professional writer and editor who learned the value of patient empowerment during her struggle with a hard-to-diagnose and complex endocrine disorder.