What changes would you like to see in Healthcare’s waiting rooms?
In the name of efficiency, profits, public health and a better customer experience, healthcare providers around the country are looking at changing every aspect of the waiting-room experience, from the furniture to the fish tank.
Returning patients no longer need to arrive early, she says, thanks, in part, to software that digitize many traditional waiting-room and administrative tasks. Patients can use it to book appointments and answer pre-appointment questionnaires from home, it also links with the patient’s insurance company to provide an estimate of the cost of service. It knows a patient’s copay, deductible, and how much they have paid so far that year.
Mayo is developing a feature for its app that gives patients an option to be tracked when their cars arrive on campus. The feature will direct patients to the parking spot closest to their appointment.
“It’s not necessarily about eliminating the waiting room. It’s about gifting control over that time back to the individuals themselves.” Stacey Change, UT Design Institute
It’s Monday, lets continue creating a better experience for the patients.
Today in health. It, this story is the end of the waiting room. Hopefully my name is bill Russell. I’m a former CIO for a 16 hospital system and creator of this week in health. It. A channel dedicated to keeping health it staff current and engaged.
VMware has been a sponsor of this week in health, it since the start and they are committed to our mission of providing relevant content to health it professionals. They recently completed an executive study with MIT on the top healthcare trends, shaping it, resilience, covering how the pandemic drove unique transformation in healthcare. This is just one of many resources they have for healthcare professionals for this and several other great.
Content pieces. Check out vmware.com/go/healthcare. All right. Here’s today’s story. And I like this one a lot. This comes from the wall street journal. It was published over the weekend. How COVID 19 is helping to change the doctor’s waiting room. Really good article. Let me give you some of the excerpts.
In the name of efficiency, profits, public health, and better customer experience. Healthcare providers around the country are looking at changing every aspect of the waiting room experience from the furniture to the fish tank. Few people have ever wanted to wait for their doctor in uncomfortable chairs, staring at a display case of old toys
and really old magazines, but the pandemic has pushed both patients and healthcare providers to a new appreciation of the risk in continuing the sick corral and healthy sitting together in close quarters. Historically, the waiting room has served several functions. It was where doctors collected all the necessary information. And then some from patients via the dreaded clipboard, it is where patients settle their bills often through a pane of glass or plastic with the receptionist behind it. And of course it is a holding pen for patients to wait until the doctor is ready to see them. Now, healthcare providers are using technology and redesigning their facilities to change the experience.
And bring much of it out of the waiting room. There should be no waiting room says Dr. Ray Howell care, chief executive of innovative care clinics in the Chicago area. We should do what we can to eliminate that. Even before the pandemic St. Antonio’s T S a O G orthopedics. Was rethinking the old waiting room experience. Chris Keane, the practices chief operating officer says she wants patients to feel more like they’re checking into a hotel than arriving at a clinic, the group’s new location, which Ms. Keane.
He says we’ll be a model going forward. Includes a lobby with high ceilings, lounge chairs, and endless counters. And oversized feel of a hotel lobby. There’s no glass wall shielding the receptionists. And Sydney behind the counter has been elevated. So the staff can see patients at eye level. I want our staff to have this position of feeling like they were a concierge to the patient, says miss keen, not a receptionist returning patients no longer need to arrive early. She says, thanks. In part to the software program called clinic Q one of several on the market that digitizes many of the traditional waiting room and administrative tasks, patients can use it to book appointments and to answer pre-appointment questionnaires.
From home that are tailored to their circumstances. And cases, clinic. Que created by health here also links with the patient’s insurance company to provide an estimate. Of the cost of service. It knows the patient’s copay deductible and how much. They have paid so far that year. Brian Chang who leads Mayo clinics, campus expansion, and Phoenix as Mayo is developing.
A feature for its app that gives patients an option to be tracked when their cars arrive on campus. This feature will direct patients to the parking spot, closest to their appointment and tell them if the doctor’s running late. If that is the case, the app will also suggest things a patient can do, perhaps visit a coffee shop on campus, or attend a seminar in progress rather than sit in a crowded waiting room. That’s interesting.
Stacy Chang executive director for the university’s design Institute. That’s the university of Texas helped design a new clinic for the UT system. He compares its linear waiting room to an airport Concourse. There are a variety of different ways to wait, including nooks for families that want to sit together and tall chairs with tables, for people who want to use their laptops.
In a system that’s not perfectly coordinated and healthcare is not, they will be unaccounted for time. Says Mr. Chang, it’s not necessarily about eliminating the waiting room. It’s about gifting control. Over that time, back to the individuals themselves, increasingly Americans have the opportunity to use time spent waiting for their doctors, doing something productive, shopping, retail businesses that feature health clinics are adding.
Locations and expanding their offerings. CVS, for example, is expanding its health hub clinics and plans to have a thousand locations in stores by the end of the year. The company recently started including behavioral health services at its clinics as well. These locations often have modest waiting rooms.
But they give patients the option to check items off their shopping lists while waiting to see their healthcare providers. And it goes a little further down. The whole premise of the retail clinic is that you don’t have long waits. She says, if you do have to wait, you sort of peruse the store and you get your errands done.
All right. That’s all for the article. And I really liked the article. As you know, we try to end these with a, so what, why does this story matter? And I think it’s pretty obvious. The purpose of the waiting room is to optimize the use of equipment and clinicians time, which is the limited resource in healthcare.
It is understandable how it started when you have only one specialist or imaging machine for a large population, you have to use that resource efficiently, but is that really necessary today?
Sure these are still constrained resources that we want to optimize, but can we solve for more variables, such as patients, time and experience, and this is what technology really excels at. There’s a reduction in time, spent in a waiting room. And the experience of the waiting room itself gets better.
When I think of this problem, I often think of Disney world. The lions can stretch for up to 90 minutes or more for a ride in Disney world. What have they done? For starters, they came up with the fast pass system, which efficiently queues people and allows them to enter the fast line
at a predetermined time in the day, then there is the experience at some of the lines. They have revamped the experience to include family and group games, trivia, and interacting with Tinkerbell on Peter Pan’s magic flight. The efficient queuing of people and the experience have both been improved significantly.
In this article, we see both of these. They use technology to eliminate forms, optimize the patient flow.
And if there’s a need for a waiting room, make it more productive in some cases and comforting in other areas. This represents a mindset, a customer mindset. How do we take care of our customers? We have to evaluate the conditions that we put them in
prioritize making those conditions better and prioritize the investment and engaged creative people to solve those challenges. This is a great article to start the week with. I hope you enjoyed it. That’s all for today. If you know someone that might benefit from our channel, please forward them a note.
They can subscribe on our website this week, health.com or wherever you listen to podcasts, apple, Google, overcast, Spotify, Stitcher, you get the picture. We are everywhere. Or at least we’re trying to be, we want to thank our channel sponsors who are investing in our mission to develop the next generation of health leaders. VMware Hill-Rom 📍 Starbridge advisors, McAfee and Aruba networks. Thanks for listening that’s all for now