Patient education and counselling is traditionally done with the doctor talking from one side of the table, and the patients on the other side, trying to keep up. Tools that the doctor may use to help him include X-ray or ultrasound pictures — things that led to the diagnoses — to help the patient visualize the problem.   

It’s actually not an easy nut to crack, and sometimes the medical professional will have to repeat himself. Perhaps the patient did not understand some things that the doctor was saying, which is based on certain medical jargon even when it’s been simplified. Even worse, medical terms can easily overshadow the general explanation. Sometimes, the patient is still in shock from finding out that they are ill. Additionally, the doctor can only go on so much to explain the conditions — he is under pressure to help other patients as well. 

banner promotion: essential guide to medical animation

What’s potentially better than simply talking or using still images is to use moving images — animations that can accurately and concisely illustrate what the doctor is trying to convey, and can be rewatched! What people say is true — a picture speaks a thousand words, and a move one summarizes pages of text into minutes of watching something. From incubation periods to how to cure diseases, animation can cover it all! Let’s take a look at some examples and their advantages.

How patient educational animation work?

Medical visualization used to explain conditions to patients include many things. That goes from explanations of how infectious illnesses are caught and what viruses do to our body, to even brief descriptions of how medical procedures will unravel. It’s good to ensure that patients are aware of all that can happen to them. Animations can easily and nicely show that while reducing unpleasantness of real-life footage to avoid pessimistic reactions.

Learn more about why and how you should use medical animation here:
>> 7 must-know things about medical animation 

There are two main benefits to better communication about diseases between patients and medical staff via animation:

Saves time for medics 

Doctors and nurses and well-known for having hectic schedules. They are constantly working long hours, they have night shifts, and their jobs require a lot of concentration. Adding patient education and counselling on to their list of tasks can be draining and ineffective. This applies particularly to standard patient counselling regarding common diseases such as the flu.

To save them from this trouble, for cases that are not out of the ordinary, ranging from a cold to cancer, there can be short animation videos that explains the diseases. It saves the doctor some explanation time, and he will not have to repeat himself too much if he can give the patient access to the video (perhaps online, on the hospital’s website). 

Of course, medical cases that require more specific advice or include uncommon conditions will be explained by the doctors. But only when the standard videos doesn’t apply does this happen, so that the professionals save time for other tasks. 

Helps the patient understand better 

Scientific visualization of diseases and procedures are wonderful for patients — most of whom are not familiar with medical jargon. Sometimes, when the doctors sit down to explain things, the patient may not grasp what he means. This information is quite abstract, and the patient may be dealing with the emotions of learning about a diagnosis. As a result, visualizations of processes — whether it’s about how the disease manifests or how it can be cured, can be very helpful for patients. 

Understanding one’s condition is important because it lets patients know what’s going to happen to them. This somewhat helps them and their family keep calm — especially if they understand what the steps are to getting them healthy! They’ll also learn of what they may be able to do to help, thus making the treatment process more effective. And this knowledge is the best coming from trustworthy sources like clinics and hospitals! Otherwise, people will rely on the internet’s unreliable sources. Leaving patients to search for answers on their own can lead to misinformation and confusions. 

Beyond accurate visualization, animation’s strength lies in the fact that it provides a better medium of communication than language or written words. Many animations can be generally understood even without subtitles or voice-overs. If you are a doctor who is treating foreign patients who are unlikely to understand certain words (even “the intestine” could be confusing to those who know English as a second language!), animation is your silver bullet to the problem of patient education! 

Take a look at the British Heart Foundation’s short video on heart failure (its causes and treatments). The accurate animation can effectively cover all information needed in a pleasant and understandable way to patients. 

 

Encapsulate comprehensively any pressing health issue for public awareness

An additional benefit of using animation in medical education is it can be used for public purposes. 

Shortage of traditional medical publicity campaigns

Often, for things like this, authorities such as hospitals and the Health Department tend to print out leaflets and posters to stick onto bathroom doors or next to sinks. Two problems can arise with this. Firstly, most people might not pay close attention to these posters because they are not interactive or engaging. Secondly, these may work for public places like hospitals and train stations — but what about more private locations like workplaces or homes? How can you increase the amount of awareness regarding this?

Publicity in the social media age 

This is where animations come in. Colorful animations are a joy to watch, especially when combined with other elements such as a song. Take a look at this wonderful music video, which is made with 2D animation that sums up all that the public can do during the coronavirus pandemic. It’s memorable, understandable across languages (although there are also subtitles available), and helpful. Moreover, it was produced fairly quickly, in response to the sudden escalation of this disease! 

Videos such as this reduce the pressure of medical facilities and doctors because it minimizes infected cases. At the same time, it helps everyone — patients or not — protect themselves in the simplest and most entertaining way! Such a video can be shared on social media, shown on TV — it’s highly accessible, and can go viral, thus further spreading your words. The popularity of such a video can also imprint it on people’s minds, keeping them reminded, whether they’re at home or work or at train stations, to protect themselves!

If you want an even simpler form of video, take a look at whiteboard animation:
>> Apply whiteboard explainer video to improve patient education

 

Conclusion

Whether you are a healthcare provider or an NGO raising funds for these health problems, animation is an essential tool for your work. It is particularly useful for patient or public counselling, since you can reach many with relatively little work, thereby relieving stress on medical professionals. 

If you’d like to know more about the process and costs of making an animated video, we have some great resources below.

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