It Begins with You

Patient Engagement -> Definitions


The Center for Advancing Health defines patient engagement as “actions individuals must take to obtain the greatest benefit from the health services available to them” and notes that “engaged patients are involved in the process of care, and their behavior is as important to health outcomes as provider or policy actions.” Carmen et al (2013) say patient engagement is defined as “patients, families, their representatives, and health professionals working in active partnership at various levels across the health care system—direct care, organizational design and governance, and policy making—to improve health and health care.”


Health self-managment

Health self-management, also known as self-care, occurs when an individual takes responsibility for their health and does what it takes to manage their illnesses. This can involve the development of a care and wellness plan between the patient, their doctor, their family and other support systems. Patient self-management emphasizes the importance of creating a system of health care that supports patients, such as developing a responsive care team, linking the patient with community supports, and offering culturally sensitive education and training materials. In 2009, The World Health Organization defined self-care as: “the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a health-care provider.

Patient Activation

Patient activation is the degree to which patients understand their health conditions and take actions to support improved health and wellness. Patients with higher activation understand they are responsible for maintaining their health and consulting with their providers to better understand how to do so. They have the skills to manage their condition, maintain their health functioning, and access appropriate and high-quality care (Judith Hibbard et al., 2004).