One third of people have already given up on their New Year’s resolution.1 But what about at your organization? What are your main business goals and clinical initiatives for 2018, and how are you planning on finding continued success throughout 2018 and beyond?
As a partner to over a thousand organizations, we’ve heard from many of you on your key initiatives in 2018 – here are the three most popular:
- Improve Patient & Staff Engagement
- Focus on Interoperability & Innovation
- Strengthen Cybersecurity & Ensure Regulatory Compliance
To help you maintain your business resolutions in the new year, we’re going to highlight these initiatives in an article series. Each article will highlight the pain points specific to each goal, and then provide a quick rundown on how to leverage MedBridge to meet these business goals. Today’s focus is patient and staff engagement.
Patient and Staff Engagement Action Plan for 2018
Patients and staff are indispensable to the success of your organization, and yet, taking action to prioritize their engagement and satisfaction continually falls short. In the HealthLeaders Media Industry Survey 2013, only 19% of leaders reported their Patient Experience as “Very Strong”, and only 12% listed their Clinician Recruitment/Retention as “Very Strong”. Additionally, over half of the respondents listed Patient Experience and Satisfaction as a top priority for the next year.2
It’s time to make good on your word and take action. To get started, let’s focus on the four initiatives listed below (click any to jump directly to that initiative):
- Decrease Patient Readmissions
- Decrease Cancellations/No-Shows
- Increase Patient Satisfaction
- Increase Staff Engagement
MedBridge clients have listed these as Patient and Staff Engagement goals for 2018. Below is our recommended action plan for using MedBridge to achieve them.
Decrease Patient Readmission Rates, Length of Stay, and Associated Costs
For those of you who work in Post-Acute Care, patient readmissions are a costly affair, with both operational costs and potential for imposed penalties. Kaiser Health News accurately summed up the erosion of time and money due to readmission with these stats from the Federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, “One in five Medicare patients historically ends up back in the hospital within 30 days. In 2011, 3.3 million adults returned to the hospital, running up medical costs estimated at $41 billion.”3 So how is your organization going to avoid these costs in 2018?
Implement the MedBridge Patient Engagement solution across your organization to optimize care delivery and ensure patients are well-prepared post-discharge. Products like Patient Education, Home Exercise Builder, and our Patient Mobile App improve recovery outside the hospital and can help patients with critical aspects of care such as following their medication schedule, understanding red flags, or successfully completing their home exercise program.
Decrease Patient Cancellations and No Shows
One recent study revealed an average no-show rate of 18.8%, with a resulting cost of over 14 million dollars across the 10 clinics.4 No-shows not only affect your bottom line, but they interrupt your daily schedules and routines, and can have residual effects on loyal patients. Patients miss appointments or cancel because they aren’t seeing the immediate benefits of your work. They want to get better, but for whatever reason they are not seeing the value of a clinic visit.
How do you change minds and better serve this population? Easy, stay connected throughout the episode of care with our Patient Mobile App. Once downloaded, clinicians can work with patients to set daily reminders, and track progress to increase adherence and activation. These tools can help monitor a patient’s participation in care and add extra touch-points throughout the rehabilitation process, going a long way to gaining valuable patient buy-in.
Using reporting and contact tools like MedBridge Net Promoter® Score and Marketing Automation can also help to demonstrate your dedication for patients. NPS® simplifies collecting patient satisfaction ratings on everything from your overall score (“How likely are you to refer XYZ Clinic to a friend?”) to parking, and front office interaction. Once you act on the results of your NPS® survey, Marketing Automation makes it easy to reconnect and keep you practice top-of-mind with clients
Increase Patient Satisfaction
Patient satisfaction is going to become critical to the financial success of your care setting as we shift to a value-based, pay for performance, model. The scope of influence for patient satisfaction will go beyond the patient experience as well. According to worldwide expert in patient satisfaction, Dr. Chris Stout, PsyD, PhD, not only can we use satisfaction data to shape the patient experience, “but also to aid in staff management and development, augment clinical outcome findings from PROs (patient reported outcomes), and for marketing and contracting purposes.”5
Patient inspired care needs to be on your radar for 2018, but how can you remold your business plan to account for these changes?
Investing in MedBridge can kick-off these rippling improvements throughout your organization to match with patient expectations. Start with MedBridge Continuing Education courses to excite your staff with professional development opportunities, as well as to help improve clinical outcomes and consistency of care. A happy and engaged staff will benefit your patient population.
Patient focused tools like our Home Exercise Builder, Patient Education, and Patient Mobile App can also improve adherence and keep patients satisfied throughout their rehabilitation process, from the clinic and beyond. If all of this falls into place, you’ll see boosted NPS® scores and be able to keep the ball rolling with our Marketing Automation. The proof is in the pudding. Professional PT used our complete package to see these results – Read their story.
Increase Staff Engagement
Yes, patient’s are your focus, but who is your direct connection to patients? Your staff. So, as many of our clients have mentioned, staff engagement needs to be a priority in 2018.
To bring these initiatives full circle, it’s important to understand that the effects of investing in your staff cascade into a satisfied and engaged patient population. According to the PwC Health Research Institute, “73 percent of provider executives say balancing patient satisfaction and employee job satisfaction is a barrier to efforts to improve the patient experience,” however, they continued on to expose the key connection: “But the two have the potential to go hand in hand. The Cleveland Clinic saw major improvements in patient experience measures after conducting programs to engage employees in the mission of caregiving.”6 We’ve seen these same results first hand with several of our clients, and can help you get there in 2018.
Offering continuing education benefits through MedBridge is a great place to start. With unlimited access to hundreds of interactive, high-quality courses, available online and through any device (have you downloaded our clinician mobile app yet?), our CE facilitates your staff’s commitment to the highest level of care at your organization.
Courses not only cover a variety of clinical topics, including both advanced study and recommended competency tracks, but also can help front office staff, ensuring an exceptional patient experience at all touch-points. Included in the course library are curated Advanced Certification Exam Prep Programs, Live Webinars, and Certificate learning tracks. All of these can make a huge difference for attracting and retaining top talent. Plus, courses can be assigned through an integrated LMS, simplifying administrative and managerial workflows.
Get Engaged in 2018!
You may have already started eating ice cream again or are lagging on your commitment to hit the gym four days a week, but it’s not too late to get your organization’s resolutions on track! Request a demo of MedBridge for Enterprise today to receive a free demo of how we can help you with both patient and staff engagement in the new year.
- Kheirkhah P, Feng Q, Travis LM, Tavakoli-Tabasi S, Sharafkhaneh A. Prevalence, predictors and economic consequences of no-shows. BMC Health Services Research. 2016;16:13. doi:10.1186/s12913-015-1243-z.