How videos relieve patient anxiety

videos relieve patient anxiety

Hospital visits can be very stressful for patients, but videos relieve patient anxiety by offering accessible and useful information. Short, well-placed and informative videos can make a huge difference to the patient experience.

Answering their questions, offering reassurance and helping them plan their visits can make patients feel much more prepared, and consequently less anxious about their visit.

Why do patients feel anxious about hospital visits?

Whether it’s a GP appointment, minor procedure or intricate surgery, patients can become very anxious about visiting a hospital or care facility.

Often, patients are unsure of what to expect during a hospital visit. We all know that a doctor’s appointment can be intimidating. 

The fear of the unknown can let the imagination take over and create negative potential scenarios. In some circumstances, these anxious feelings might cause people to avoid making appointments to see their physician.

This is potentially dangerous for the patient and can be costly for the NHS. After all, for many conditions early diagnosis is key. If someone has a suspicious mole, seeing a doctor straight away can stop the progression of skin cancer and avoid costly treatments on the NHS.

If they do make it to the appointment, anxiety can cause a lack of concentration or focus on what’s happening. This can cause difficulty in getting consent, accurately completing procedures, communicating with the patient and ensuring that follow-up procedures are done properly.

Health and care facilities must find a way to relieve patient anxiety, otherwise their productivity and the patient experience will get worse while their overall costs go up.

How can videos relieve patient anxiety?

Video is the best tool available for sharing information because it’s:

  • Easy-to-understand
  • Memorable
  • Accessible
  • Engaging
  • Sharable

Videos simplify complex concepts by representing them visually. They aren’t overwhelming like pages of text can be. In short, they’re simple but effective.

“The video was clear and told me clearly what I need to do before my appointment. It was reassuring that nothing alarming would happen” –  Direct patient feedback online 

If you offer patients a video alternative for receiving information, they can be used as a great tool to reassure your patients and make them a much more positive patient experience.

You could make videos like:

  • Tour of your facilities
  • Meet the team
  • Explainer videos for conditions, procedures and home techniques
  • Interviews with patients, staff etc

These all give new patients a good idea of what to expect from their visit. This eradicates some of the nerves associated with hospital visits and potential complications. 

Using real patients or doctors make the process more personal, engaging and realistic. The entire process will seem less daunting and give them confidence that it will all go smoothly.

“When you hear the word “tube will be inserted”, your mind could create many images of this. This video showed me exactly how I will be placed on the bed, how my mouth will be clamped open and how the tube looks. I feel very comfortable now. Thank you. “ Endoscopy Patient – Sheffield

Another way videos relieve patient anxiety is that patients can return to them. So, if they do not get all the information in the appointment, they can watch the video at home. By letting them go at their own pace and return to them, they can get all the information they need.

3 examples of using video to relieve patient concerns

1. Tour of Torbay Maternity Hospital

Labour is a stressful time for families. Forward-planning is essential to make the process run as smoothly as possible. Many choose to visit maternity wards in advance so as to avoid any surprises.

However, not everyone can visit the hospital in person, and sometimes the department doesn’t have the capacity to host these tours.

To combat this, Torbay Maternity Hospital commissioned a virtual tour of the department, showing:

  • Different wards
  • Birthing pool
  • Delivery suites
  • Parking
  • What would happen on the day

So far, patients have responded well to this video and agree that it answered most of the queries they had about the hospital.

2. Linq implantation video

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust commissioned two patient information videos about Linq device implantation. One for pre-op, one post-op.

The pre-op video actually allowed the department to cancel all pre-admission appointments. It answered all the queries the patients had, so there was no need for a face-to-face with the arrhythmia nurses.

3. Preparing for filming

Videos relieve patient anxiety both in and outside the hospital. Health & Care Videos were planning to film a young boy called Freddie.

His disabilities meant that changes to his routine and new situations stress him out. So, the team decided to film a short 6-second introductory video to our cameramen, Jack and Harry.

Thanks to this, he knew exactly who was coming to meet him and he could prepare for the day. In the end, the filming was a great success; we got everything we needed without Freddie feeling overwhelmed.

Jack and Harry even sent a thank-you video back to Freddie at the end of the project, just to ensure he was alright.

Videos relieve patient anxiety in many different ways. You just need to integrate them into your pathway and implement them properly. They must be accessible for them to be effective, so try placing them on your website or social media channels.

To help relieve patient anxiety, or discover more benefits of using video, get in touch with Health & Care Videos today.