The standard of optimizing healthcare performance continues to face challenges ranging from ongoing economic disruption to clinician burnout and inadequate resources. The Association of American Medical Colleges even reports there may be a shortage of up to 124,000 physicians by 2034. As these challenges continue, healthcare organizations should consider adopting emerging technologies as a means of support to staff. In fact, the top organizational goal of many providers is cited as digital transformation, which has the power to reduce clinician burnout, improve patient experience, and provide better health outcomes.
In a recent survey, frontline workers named lack of resources, IT challenges, and too much time devoted to clinical documentation as their top challenges. And when asked what healthcare organizations can do to resolve such struggles, the top answers included streamlining processes and automating more manual processes. The Journal of General Internal Medicine found that physicians spend about 44% of their time on burdensome documentation and only about 66% of their time with the patient. Emerging technologies and digital solutions can increase operational efficiencies, which reallocates clinicians’ time to spend on direct patient care and improves care quality.
At the end of the day, clinicians want to spend more time on patient care. Clinician satisfaction and well-being increase by gaining additional time with their patients. Healthcare professionals want to know they’re making a positive impact. After all, healthcare is a people business. Even so, technology can help reach this goal. The most successful implementations of digital solutions offer value propositions on both sides of the equation — they create value for the patient and family, while also making the clinician’s job easier and more enjoyable by saving time and eliminating ancillary duties.
Reassign non-clinical tasks for better experiences, efficiency, and Outcomes
Automating routine processes through emerging technology such as interactive patient care systems (IPS) allows providers to streamline operations and focus more on each individual patient. By facilitating omnichannel engagement via a variety of endpoints including televisions, digital signage, and mobile devices, provider organizations are able to drive more collaborative care and encourage the active involvement of the patient in their care journey. For example, data-driven IPS offerings like CareFlows automate education for specific pathways such as pain management, discharge, support, and quality and safety initiatives, relieving staff of both provisioning and documentation tasks. Leveraging an IPS to deliver relevant care plans to a digital whiteboard reduces the repetitive nature of a nurse continuously sharing care activities with each family member or visitor throughout the day. In aggregate, staff productivity is increased by eliminating duplicative tasks.
Collaborative care models allow patients to actively be involved in their health experience for better outcomes and a sense of control in an unfamiliar environment. The Smart TV can function as a core part of the digital care experience, creating a hub for education, entertainment, and empowerment. Controlling environmental issues and meal ordering on their own, patients can appropriately manage their non-clinical requests and enable staff to more efficiently complete rounding and respond to patients faster. This renewed focus on care improves quality, boosts productivity, and increases HCAHPS results.
Further empowering staff with more efficient communication, digital door signs highlight key information for care teams to improve safety, quality, and experience for each patient and family. Automatic updates remove the need for handwritten precaution notes and the screen’s visibility supports safety protocols, facilitating staff efficiency by making key information easy to access for all of the relevant providers. Reducing non-clinical tasks allows healthcare providers to practice at the top of their licenses to improve care, increases time spent with the patient, and fosters loyalty and teamwork.
Create added value and engagement
Time is a critical piece of the equation for everyone involved in the care process. Whether the goal is to reduce patients’ length of stay in a hospital or increase the time nurses spend with the patient, operational inefficiencies in the form of mundane tasks create challenges. As digital health continues to increase in importance, an IPS can replace repetitive administrative tasks and ease workloads. The workload placed upon clinical teams is exponentially growing on an annual basis and continues to become more complex. By leveraging IPS and other emerging technologies, healthcare leadership can support their teams, reduce burnout, and retain talent.
Comprehensive platforms combine user-friendly technology with patient-centered, value-based care. Value-based patient engagement systems guide patients throughout the care process, optimizing self-management by seamlessly weaving communications into the smart device of their choice. Patient engagement is at the heart of the value-based care model that is increasingly taking hold. Leveraging data to understand patients as individuals and factoring in their medical history allows communications to be tailored toward keeping patients involved in their care. This allows providers to deliver more personalized care and develop tailored treatment plans based on collected data and each patient’s unique needs.
Replacing automated tasks with more meaningful work allows for improved care collaboration and experiences. By streamlining healthcare processes, hospitals operate more efficiently and clinicians find their work more fulfilling. Healthcare provider teams save time, improve communication, drive better care, reduce costs, and ultimately achieve better outcomes.
Improve the environment for all
Technology can help augment and create a better working environment for staff, thereby creating a better experience for patients. The digital hospital of the future prioritizes the well-being of staff, patients, and loved ones. As healthcare decision-makers turn to emerging technology, partners that provide solutions focused on creating value for patients, staff, and the overall facility should be chosen. This can improve staff engagement, reduce administrative burden, and allow employees to spend more time on what matters most – patient care.
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