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Dr. Becker is a physician and technologist, and the founder and visionary behind the BeckonCall technology. Currently a Neurohospitalist with Honor Health, Dr. Becker is constantly conceiving new ways for technology to improve the quality of care delivery for patients everywhere.
As a physician, time is your most valuable asset.
So much of what we do revolves around communication. That topic is a focus of this blog, largely because we at the company are building a communications tool. Which got us thinking about the importance of good communication when things go wrong. That, in turn, led us to thinking about crises in general - how people respond and how crises can be managed. As we looked around the web and crisis management articles, we pulled some common themes and suggestions, and compiled them here. You’re running a medical practice, so of course we’re not going to tell you and your team how to handle acute medical situations. And any crisis tends to require a similar process as in a medical emergency, so nothing here will be too new. Even so, and even though we’re not a PR firm, we hope that this will be a useful reminder that other situations may come up and help you prepare for them.
We love mobile technology here at BeckonCall. It’s what we do, it’s all we think about. Sometimes, though, we spend so much time working on our mobile platform that we don’t come for air to give props to other people out there making cool apps. So, knowing that we’re all working to make your job as a practice administrator easier and more efficient, here are a few apps we think are worth checking out for you and your providers.
Good medical care can’t be a one-way street. Patients must engage in their own care, being proactive in minimizing the risk of problems where possible and adhering to prescribed therapies when things do go wrong. In addition to the primary goal of improving health, good patient engagement has the added benefit of building the relationship between your practice and the people coming to you for care. This has the potential to boost retention and referrals, making patient engagement programs a good business decision, as well. Furthermore, in the age of value-based care, improving outcomes is a critical piece of reimbursement. And when patients take control of their health, outcomes improve.
As we were drafting this post, Amazon’s S3 storage service went down for several hours. Even if you weren’t aware of exactly what was happening from a technical standpoint, you probably noticed services or websites that weren’t working on February 28. Amazon S3 underpins a lot of the internet so there was quite a bit of consternation when it decided to take a nap. The S3 service guarantees 99.9% uptime and, according to the TechCrunch article linked above, has been consistent outside of two notable events. Despite the high profile problem, Amazon and its competitors offer extremely reliable services. Therefore, that event certainly adds a new context to the topic of cloud-based storage, but doesn’t really change anything that follows. So here we go…
On this blog we have thoroughly established the existence of communications breakdowns within and among care teams. We’ve also pointed out the cost of these deficits in terms of patient well-being, dollars, and legal activity. All of that begs the question of how these problems arise in the first place. Glad you asked.
People are talking about you. Not just you, but anyone who offers a product or a service. It’s always been the case that humans seek information and validation about, well, everything, from people they trust. Social proof is an incredibly powerful force. That’s great when the social proof is positive. What about when it’s negative? And, with something as sensitive and emotional as medical care, how should healthcare providers think about online reviews?
Start ‘em young, they say. Who is “they?” Anyone with an opinion. What are we starting ‘em on? Anything “they” happen to have an opinion about: Violin lessons, golf, holding the door open for their elders…
In this case, we at BeckonCall are talking about starting young physicians working with good healthcare IT during their training. From a utilization standpoint, IT and communications tools should be approached much the same way as diagnostics, implants and drugs. Namely, if a new tool is evidence-based, useful to a clinician’s practice, and financially beneficial, it should be considered for use. Like a new therapeutic intervention, this doesn’t mean that medical practices should automatically switch to the latest and greatest. But clinicians should have access to select, cutting edge products that will help them advance their nascent practices and medicine in general.