Virtualizing Healthcare

The call for virtual healthcare is getting dramatically louder. This demand is two-fold:

  1. More flexibility for patient access to care, and
  2. Improved efficiency for healthcare facilities and insurance providers to enable a better patient experience at scale.

Catalysts include a variety of touchpoints in the patient experience. For instance, concerning healthcare access, the Association of American Medical Colleges predicts a shortage of approximately 122,000 physicians by 2032. The association also projects a shortfall between 21,100 and 52,200 of primary care physicians by that time. Furthermore, this shortage for rural America is even more pronounced with longer drives to medical facilities. Suburbanites on average live about 12 minutes from their nearest hospital, while urbanites are just 10 minutes away. In comparison, people in rural areas live an average of 17 minutes from their nearest hospital, with 25 percent living more than 30 minutes from healthcare facilities.1

Another driver, which directly impacts the patient experience, is wait time and patient attrition. Case in point: 30 percent of patients facing long wait times leave before seeing the doctor, with 20 percent changing providers altogether after a long wait time experience. Additionally, 53 percent of patients who have limited access to healthcare leave an appointment due to wait time.1

Healthcare providers are grappling with these profound challenges to alleviate the growing pain of limited access, while at the same time improving the patient experience. It’s a major challenge – and an opportunity to further embrace digital transformation.

In fact, healthcare providers are actively seeking ways to remove friction from every area of the patient care experience – from scheduling to check-in / check-out, service and payment support, care triage, and the monitoring of follow-up care. There is little room for error – resources are limited, and patients have choices. The ability to quickly connect patients to care and do so at scale in a personalized way is critical.

For instance, Advanced Digital Life (ADiLife) developed a comprehensive healthcare software platform to enable patients, doctors, caregivers, and clinical staff to monitor and communicate health conditions regardless of location using their portal. In collaboration with the Compunetix Video Call Center™ (VCC), this portal was enhanced with face-to-face video conferencing and the ability to transfer patients to other health care professionals, multi-tenant capabilities, and high-quality video connection using very low bandwidth. With real-time video conferencing, ADiLife’s portal provides a unified web-based solution that allows customers to deliver telehealth services directly to patients and represents a transformative telemedicine solution.

Telehealth using VCC for kiosksKIOSK Information Systems has partnered with Compunetix to deliver VCC for the healthcare community via digital kiosks. A recent use case involves a leading U.S.-based healthcare insurance provider using the Compunetix VCC on kiosks throughout their facilities to provide seamless, intuitive video experiences for patients to access expert help in relation to their billing inquiries. Rather than waiting for help and further constraining limited resources, patients can use a kiosk to get instant, face-to-face virtual assistance. This digital approach to patient care is gaining adoption as a preferred mode of communication versus human interaction as more people opt for the direct connection and convenience that technology provides.

Another VCC scenario is an isolated or high traffic healthcare facility that provides the option to use a kiosk for instant, personalized service where a patient can converse face-to-face with a remote representative. The solution’s HD video and audio allow for clear communication, while its transfer and routing capabilities let the kiosk representative direct the call to the right healthcare specialist providing immediate access to advanced care eliminating the need to travel or wait at high traffic hospitals.

The derived benefits of virtualizing healthcare are far-reaching. Through the VCC kiosk solution, healthcare organizations – from hospital facilities to insurance providers – can provide easy patient access to expertise for both service and care needs. Providers can deliver telehealth services directly to the patient, and clinicians have the tools and information needed to manage patient care. Additionally, depending on the complexity of care, patients may need concierge and referral services to navigate different healthcare providers in order to get the care they need. VCC can help facilitate this concierge experience with the ability to triage patients to other healthcare specialists.

Finally, with the ability to capture call center performance data analytics through the VCC kiosk solution, healthcare organizations can improve both patient engagement rates and quality. With analytics, healthcare organizations can leverage call center data to gain insights from the patient and provider perspectives to evolve the engagement experience and optimize efficiency – all essential in answering today’s virtual healthcare demands and achieving Insight Driven Health.2

How can your organization leverage virtual healthcare to expand access and improve the patient experience? Connect with KIOSK to learn more.

Authored by Anne Guenther, Global Partner Program Manager
KIOSK Information Systems

 

1 Long Appointment Wait Time a Detriment to High Patient Satisfaction, 2018

2 Insight Driven Health – Accenture, 2015

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