With improvements in technology brings new ways that consumers can better function in their day to day lives.
Technology allows for all kinds of ways to make life easier and more convenient.
- Consumers now have better shopping experiences.
- Consumers have new methods to communicate with friends, family and colleagues.
- People can perform their jobs more efficiently.
Technology is transforming the way we live, behave, and work.
Healthcare is no different. With technology in healthcare, doctors are able to gather information quicker on remedies for diseases. Healthcare professionals are able research treatments to develop methods of healing patients. And improved communication has helped medical providers to deliver better medicine.
So we decided to create a list of 4 things you can do, as an IT professional that works in healthcare, to use in order to wow your patients with superb care. If you’re able to use any of these 4 best practices, we’re pretty sure your docs will love you, your administration will love you, and your boss will definitely gain respect from your efforts.
Use the web wisely.
Does your clinic or hospital have a website? How do you use it?
Are you communicating with your patients regularly? Are you updating your website, your FAQ page, and making it engaging to the patient, and potential patients?
More and more of your patients and potential patients are using the internet to research medical problems and symptoms. According to a 2013 survey, over 72% of American’s use the web to research health information. Consumers are researching things like treatments on the web. Patients are reviewing medicines on the web. Your patients are using the internet to improve their overall health.
All from these little pesky things called websites.
While you should never guide a patient to avoid a trip their M.D., you do want to use your website to influence decisions that are being made by your clinics or hospitals patients. Your practice has patients that are smart and empowered. Embrace this fact. Don’t run from it.
Knowing all that, here are some other things to consider:
- Is your website secure?
- Do you update the content on a regular basis?
- Do the servers that you use to host your website have appropriate backups and redundancy?
- Are your web assets and media secured and is your website(s) able to fend off intrusions from malware and spam attacks?
Consider these things when striving to improve your patient experience.
Don’t fear social media.
Some of the best social media campaigns we’ve seen have come from healthcare organizations.
Medical facilities, such as hospitals and private practices, are using social media to connect with patients. Healthcare professionals are using Facebook, Twitter, and even Instagram to field questions from patients and consumers. Clinics are using social media to launch awareness campaigns for causes like breast cancer and obesity.
Doctors are using social media to connect directly with patients, and nurses are using video platforms like YouTube to reach audiences they never previously could.
As an IT professional in healthcare this could obviously pose some problems for you, so you’ll want to get educated on how to ensure security and compliance is met, along with all the benefits of using social. For some great presentations that can teach you how to do this, check out these resources here.
Work more efficiently to care for patients.
IT in healthcare has made caring for patients, through the ease of accessing data, easier than ever before.
Nurses and doctors now use mobile and hand-held devices to access and record a patient’s medical history. Doctors can easily check to make sure they’re administering correct treatments, and medicines. Nurses and medical staff can see lab test results, validate vitals, and order prescriptions using technology.
Technology is also making healthcare record easier to access for the patient, not just the doctor. As more institutions are adopting electronic health records, patients can see their personal healthcare information so they have a better understanding of the care their receiving.
Medical health records and using them to be more efficient is good for the patient but can pose huge challenges to the IT manager working inside this healthcare facility. Compliance, HIPAA, and security should always be top of mind as you work to improve the level of care you’re giving to your patients and their families.
Using data to predict trends.
By analyzing data from web searches done on specific topics related to healthcare, search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing have been able to predict trends in topics such as flu outbreaks, salmonella poisoning, and the like.
Not every person who searches for “common cold” is really sick, but when patterns emerge in these search queries and are coupled together, they tell a powerful story of how much the “common cold” may be circulating in different regions around the globe.
Data like this example will help those in healthcare respond quicker to diseases and outbreaks, as well as craft plans to be more preventative in nature.
Learn how we can help your healthcare facility.
Now that you know a bit more about how to use technology to improve the quality of healthcare to your patients, we invite you to learn more about how our outsourced IT services can further improve how you work. Email us here to learn more about how we can help your IT team and processes.