Paper has always been a huge hindrance to the healthcare sector. While paperwork is critical to everyday workflows, technology can help digitize and automate many repetitive and predictable tasks. Workflow automation helps reduce the administrative burden and enhance staff productivity, all while reducing overheads. Below are a few areas healthcare practices can automate.
#1. System maintenance
One of the biggest risks facing healthcare organizations is how vulnerable their patient health records are. Most information leaks and breaches occur at the hands of human error. To make matters worse, accidentally entering the wrong information into a system can lead to patients being misdiagnosed. Managing such matters at scale becomes practically impossible if you’re still relying on manual processes.
When processes like updating electronic health records are automated, there’s no room for blunders that can lead to inconsistent data. For example, with a centralized and protected data storage repository, all employees will have access to the same data that’s updated in real time.
#2. Employee onboarding
Acquiring the best talent is one thing, but onboarding them is another. Complicated onboarding processes prevent new staff from getting started with their jobs. Newly employed doctors, for example, may find it difficult to care for patients on their first day when they’re constantly bombarded with onboarding paperwork. Another time-consuming process is getting new employees familiar with your compliance needs and demands.
Healthcare onboarding isn’t just about recruiting people. It’s also about having a defined and automated process for getting them up to speed as soon as possible. Automated solutions will forward employees all the forms and information they need to get up to speed quickly, instead of having to manually fill in and file stacks of paper forms.
#3. Information security
Healthcare providers are a top target for hackers, particularly ransomware developers who see them as easy targets. When access to patient data can mean the difference between life and death, it’s imperative that your systems are locked behind multiple layers of protection. Antivirus software and firewalls aren’t enough in a time when attackers are using increasingly sophisticated attacks to exploit a wide range of vulnerabilities.
Innovative healthcare companies are now automating their information security workflows to reduce the risk of human error and use predictive analytics to detect unknown threats. Artificial intelligence is a game changer in the sector, and one that every hospital should be using.
#4. Document management
Healthcare organizations are strictly regulated by HIPAA and HITECH legislation with regards to the way they store, share, and manage patient health information (PHI). For those relying heavily on manual processes, ensuring PHI is protected in accordance with the law becomes extremely complicated as your repository of records grows. At the same time, employees need quick and easy access to critical information to serve their patients better.
Document management solutions designed for healthcare providers are secure and compliant by design. They streamline the management of electronic health records, but also other important information like invoicing, supplier contracts, and correspondence. Document management systems even track when documents were edited and by whom to keep employees accountable and to streamline the auditing process.
#5. Patient admission and discharge
Patient admission and discharge are key elements of any hospital workflow, and doctors often spend a lot of time signing off approvals and scheduling patient meetings. Such administrative tasks, while essential, can consume so much time that they become a bureaucratic nightmare. If you’re relying on a paper-based workflow, approvals always take longer and are harder to obtain, which can result in reduced patient care.
With an automated admission and discharge workflow, all approvals may be given in real time. For example, mobile apps can be used to review requests and schedule appointments. These are also harder to forge, while timestamped documentation gives hospital administrators full visibility into workflows.
Umbrella Managed Systems provides healthcare providers in Kansas City with the expertise and solutions needed to deliver outstanding patient care. Call us today to streamline your practice and get the support you need.