Developing and improving patient care management should always be a priority for your healthcare practice, and we are here to provide you with some key strategies to facilitate this.
Use online appointment scheduling tools
Appointment scheduling is the very first aspect of your healthcare practice that a patient is exposed to. As such, it is important that your booking system is effective, and simplicity and accessibility are the best ways to achieve this. An online appointment scheduling tool will allow patients to access your business’s website and select from a list of available appointments at a time that best suits them. Patients often lead busy lives, so allowing them to book an appointment without having to wait for the clinic’s opening hours is a great advantage.’
Use practice management software
Practice management software refers to a centralized platform that incorporates various features aimed at boosting productivity and efficiency of operations within a healthcare practice. These systems sync staff calendars to ensure that the workflow operates smoothly, streamline appointment booking processes, manage and store clinical documentation and patient records, and significantly simplify payment and billing processes. With a practice management system, the streamlining of administrative tasks will allow your business to save valuable amounts of time and money that can be redirected to delivering high-quality healthcare services to patients in need.
Form a patient flow team for quality improvement
Patient flow refers to the movement of patients through a healthcare practice. An optimal patient flow will mean that patients who require the most urgent care are seen and treated first, whilst still ensuring as minimal a wait time as possible for the other, less urgent patients. However, actually managing this process can be difficult, particularly if it is especially busy and/or you are understaffed. One of the best ways to manage patient flow is by establishing a patient flow team. These team members can identify and organize the prioritization of patients being seen, and implement interventions aimed at improving patient flow.
Align reporting with department heads for optimization
Often, the treatment of a patient in a practice, particularly a hospital, involves being transferred between several departments. During busy times, it is understandable how inter-department communication lacks, however, you should implement a system aimed at preventing these instances of inadequate communication. Department heads need to be informed of the treatment methods that occurred outside of their department to guarantee that the patient is being treated as efficiently and appropriately as possible.
Explore different staffing models
Excessive waiting times are a frequent cause of patient dissatisfaction, and being open to altering your practice’s staffing model could help reduce waits. Analyzing data related to typically busy periods will allow you to have more staff on-call in case your practice becomes overwhelmed with patients. You should also manage your patient flow in relation to your capacity constraints; there will always be a limited number of patients that can be seen at one time, but matching this with demands should help reduce waiting times.
Use technology to improve patient care and safety
Technological advancements are becoming increasingly common in healthcare practices, and they provide physicians with helpful tools to manage patient flow. Most systems implemented in healthcare practices display patient records in real-time. This means that whenever a change is made to the treatment of a patient, as long as it is uploaded onto their records, then all other healthcare providers can be kept informed. Technology greatly improves the communication between departments and facilities, as well as saving your clinic significant amounts of time by streamlining administrative tasks.