Time Spent Waiting
Have you ever had to wait around in the hospital for papers or discharge information? An unfortunate reality is that both patient and physicians have to wait. While some of it’s because of genuine delays, there’s a factor related to the outdated communication technologies and methods used which further slow things down.
The Cost Effect
There have been many studies done about the cost impact of outdated technology in the industry. In fact, a study by the research institute Ponemon surveyed 577 healthcare professionals in 2013 and found that on average doctors and nurses often wasted 45 minutes per day as the result of an outdated communication system. The Institute suggested that this could total up to $8.3 billion dollars spent across the US annually, a staggering amount of money and time wasted.
Divide this up and it could be roughly $1 million per hospital per year. This is an expense you don’t need at any hospital or clinic. Improving the situation is actually fairly simple, and fixing it should be something every healthcare provider should look at doing for 2016.
The Discharge Delay
Big delays happen around patient discharge time. The average waiting time in 2013 for patient discharge in the US was 101 minutes, and the Ponemon research suggests this could be reduced by up to 50 minutes by removing old technology like pagers and implementing new secure messaging services and communication technology.
The Patient Experience
Try to think about the economic cost and experience for the patient when determining how to manage your communication systems. Increasing efficiency around your messaging systems will not only improve productivity, but will also improve the patient experience. This factor is often overlooked, but very important as the patient’s time is just as precious as the time of doctors, nurses and other medical staff. Every minute of patient time you can save by improving your communication is a net economic benefit to you and the patient.
The Physician Experience
As the research suggested a total wastage of 45 minutes per day isn’t an acceptable time for a doctor or nurse to spend waiting for messages to filter through a pager network. Included in the delays are other distractions that serve only to exacerbate the problem. A doctor or nurse needs to spend all of their time in a clinic or hospital administering the best health care to their patients as fast and as efficiently as possible. The old saying “time is money” really does ring true for physicians, so anything you can do to speed up their patient/doctor interaction is paramount to your success in the overall treatment of your patients.
No matter how knowledgeable a physician may be, if you can’t get your communication through the system quickly and efficiently, your patient care will suffer; and there is strong research to suggest the communication is a crucial part of the overall patient-doctor experience.
What You Should Do About It
The answer can be multi-faceted and involve some important steps to take to ensure the future security and efficiency of your operations. The main technology you should look at replacing is your outdated pager technology because improving your flow of information around your clinic or hospital will have a resounding effect across multiple areas of the hospital, and benefit everybody in the operation from the doctors to the nurses to the administrative staff.
These improvements will result in better experiences for your patients and help improve the reputation of your hospital or clinic about the level excellence you provide in your patient care.
Take every opportunity to look at and review your old communication techniques because the benefit of moving to a new up-to-date system is a huge saving in time, money, and patient satisfaction.
Contact us now to see how miSecureMessages can help your physicians and staff effectively increase their productivity. Ask us about our free 30-day trial to see how miSecureMessages can improve your communications.