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Technology and Pandemic are two facets that have led to a complete paradigm shift in the Healthcare industry. On one hand, Technology has provided the necessary tools and methods to improve healthcare delivery, the Pandemic like COVID has offered an opportunity to look for non-conventional avenues to serve the patients virtually. Healthcare providers are putting more focus and effort to offer a better experience to their consumers. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this transformation, as a consumer is also expecting to receive safe and convenient healthcare experiences – both in-person and online mode. Healthcare is witnessing a drastic change which pushed service providers to think beyond Clinical practices and Medical services to enthrall the patients. They need to understand how Technological innovation and Consumerism can complement each other to enhance the patient experience. In a survey conducted by Kaufmann Hall, it was found that 81% of healthcare executives have identified “improving consumer experience” as an immediate priority for their respective organizations. However, the worrisome fact was that only 11% of healthcare executives were confident that their organization has adequate capabilities to offer a positive consumer experience. A service provider needs to invest in Technologies and Tools that are subtle to human emotion. In fact, many providers have already started incorporating modern solutions to offer innovative services to their consumers. Here we have listed down Five ways to improve the virtual healthcare experience for both patients and healthcare service providers.
Establish a strong Initial Impression
The first impression is certainly the lasting impression. The more convincing the first impression the Tools and Technology create, the likelier Physicians and Patients are to engage with them. While using a tool, the first impression is developed by measuring the efforts required to fulfill a specific task without facing any hassles.
Healthcare software development companies should pay more attention to make scheduling, consultation, and billing process informative and personalized to offer an immaculate initial impression to the patients. Application-based activities or quizzes can be offered to gauge the concerns and requirements of patients before scheduling the appointment for them. A crisp and easy-to-understand billing and insurance information can help patients to understand the cost aspects and make financially informed decisions.
Develop a Meaningful Connection and Active Engagement
Patients always expect a personal and humane engagement with healthcare professionals. They always want to be listened to, comforted, and understood by the physician to ensure better care. Healthcare service providers need to utilize tools that can facilitate delivery care and make patients feel that they are being treated as human, not statistics.
Meaningful connection requires the tools that can strengthen the patient-provider relationship beyond a usual transactional service. This can be achieved by using AI-based healthcare software, such as a speech-recognition application, that can assess a patient’s speech and determine potential ailments like asthma, cold, or some other speech-related deformity.
Active engagement could be improved by using tools or gadgets that enable patients to take action and manage their healthcare on their own while sending critical information to the healthcare professionals so that they can administer medical care if needed. Wearable gadgets, fitness trackers, ECG monitors could be used by the patients, whereas virtual assistants can be utilized by physicians to provide adequate treatment to patients.
Virtual Monitoring of Patients
Virtual healthcare monitoring offers less intrusive care to the patients and it also provides a financial benefit to hospitals by enhancing the revenue. The technology could be used to develop a virtual experience wherein the patient can maintain a higher degree of privacy while interacting with the healthcare professional. Virtual monitoring tools have made the process of administering healthcare efficient on both ends.
Continuous virtual health monitoring of patients can help service providers to improve their clinical workflows and increase revenue. It helps in the reduction of healthcare costs for the patient, as they don’t have to stay in the hospital, they can stay at their homes and can avail care provided virtually.
Inculcate Confidence and Ensure Safety
Confidence and Safety are two important aspects, that can’t be ignored at any cost. Healthcare professionals need to have confidence in the diagnoses, treatment, and prognoses process. Whereas the Patients also expect to have confidence in physicians’ expertise, their suggestions, while keeping their sensitive information confidential.
Modern Technology does offer tools and methods to address these concerns. We can use Virtual assistants to ensure provider-patient interaction remains confidential, while the Knowledge base could be used to administer evidence-based practices relevant to the condition of the patient. These tools ensure that healthcare professionals don’t have to waste time manually researching knowledge base and research papers, they rather can focus on improving the interactions with their patients.
Fortunately, we have several tools that can fetch the patient-reported outcomes, analyze them, and interprets information presented in medical research papers to offer healthcare professionals an insight into evidence-based practices. These tools adhere to industry-specific regulatory standards such as HIPAA, to ensure adequate security to the sensitive data.
Collect Feedback and Improvise
We can implement technology to offer better services, but there must be a mechanism that can collect the feedback from the end-user and provide an opportunity to make enhancements in the service offering. It is important for any Healthcare service provider to understand the views of its customer, they must know the following :
- Did the patient able to navigate the User interface easily?
- Did the patient get a complete diagnosis and treatment?
- Whether customer’s expectations were fulfilled?
We can use several channels to collect feedback about the performance of virtual patient experience points, such as:
- Quick feedback – The patient can be requested to share their experience over an online chat.
- Virtual experience surveys – A feedback link could be added on the website, mobile application, or message, so that patients can fill the survey and share feedback.
- In-person feedback – We can collect user feedback during in-person visits. The patient could be supplied with a feedback form and their feedback can be recorded to understand their experience.
- Online reviews and ratings – A text message can be sent to the patient and they can be asked to leave an online review on Google/Social Media, as it enhances the visibility and popularity of a healthcare service provider.
Once the feedback is fetched, it is important to analyze them and make adequate amendments in the service offering to make the customer’s experience better.
The Healthcare industry is adopting modern technology, but at the same time, it is important to think beyond using only Technology and Tools. It is essential to use the technology effectively and efficiently to provide healthcare service and immaculate experience to the patients.
Technology can never replace personal interactions between caregivers and patients, but it has the potential to improve the service quality and user experience. The future adoption of Technology will depend on its ability to instill trust and humility in the relationship between patients and physicians. Healthcare organizations must keep their focus on the core human values and needs to improve the virtual healthcare experience for the patients.
Disclaimer: The statements, opinions, and data contained in these publications are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of Credihealth and the editor(s).
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