Today’s health care professionals are avid users of smartphones and messaging technology. That is, until they get to work and clip on a pager, make phone calls on desktop phones, and write messages on scraps of paper.
As health systems strive to provide team-based care, they need to make it easier to share critical information. Research has shown that poor communication among health care professionals leads to increased medical errors, delays in treatment, and other adverse events that impact patient outcomes.
Clinical workflow solutions remove the boundaries to effective communications. Care teams can send secure messages more efficiently, leaving them more time to spend caring for patients.
Here are three key ways that a clinical workflow solution can benefit your health system.
Remove the Guesswork from Communication
It’s no secret that health care’s communication patterns are inefficient. When nurses need to reach the rounding physician, they look at a list of physicians’ pager numbers, send a page, and hope for a response. When a lab has critical findings to report, the lab calls the unit clerk where the patient is staying. That secretary calls the patient’s nurse, who calls the doctor, who places a new order based on the lab results and then tells the nurse to look in the EHR to see the order.
A clinical workflow solution allows health systems to leverage role-based communications. In this type of solution, messages sync with schedules. And it’s not just about informing which team is working in which unit at what time – there’s a view into which providers are in which roles on that team.
Staff can send messages directly to a provider who needs the critical information without needing to know which name/person is in that role. Critical information goes to the right person faster – and better communication leads to better patient care.
Complement Clinical Workflows
All too often, messaging tools force health systems to change evidence-based clinical workflows or introduce additional administrative tasks. With these burdens in place, staff may resist adoption and revert back to more inefficient ways to communicate – landlines, pagers, walkie-talkies, and handwritten notes.
The most effective Clinical Communications Platforms is a true workflow solution. Instead of altering existing workflows, these solutions complement them. They adapt to a health system’s longstanding best practices for organizing teams, delivering care, and sharing information with the right providers.
One Health System, One Solution
Many messaging tools work well within one business unit or a single building but cannot be used beyond those specific situations. This lack of standardization limits the effectiveness of communications products. Sometimes they are so siloed that other departments within the health system don’t even know that they exist.
An integrated, cloud-based Clinical Communications Platform can be deployed across an entire health system and accessed on any internet-accessible device. The lack of physical constraints also allows health systems to open up a larger network of care, which enables communication pathways across care venues and better supports patients throughout the continuum of care.
Satisfy All Key Stakeholders
Do these scenarios sound familiar to you?
- Executive leadership embraces a technology solution, only to discover after deployment that it actually makes front-line staff less efficient.
- After a successful pilot, front-line staff want to go full speed ahead with a product, but the IT department wants more time to test and evaluate before scaling up.
- Clinical leadership and front-line staff are on the same page, but new investments are on hold due to competing priorities.
We see this all the time in health systems. That’s why it’s important for clinical workflow solutions to meet the needs of all key health system stakeholders – front-line staff, clinical leaders, and executives making purchasing decisions.
If your health system is looking for a solution that will satisfy these key stakeholders, request a demo of Halo today.