Webinar Recap: Secure Communication
Improving Clinical Coordination with Secure, Embedded Centralized Messaging
On May 18th, we hosted a webinar aimed at education providers around the options for secure texting and messaging in healthcare. This is a recap of the webinar. For a full recording of the webinar, see the link at the bottom of the article.
Throughout home health, productivity must improve. For all of those involved in the care-at-home setting there’s a critical focus – an outright desire and necessity — on each patient’s well-being, but productivity in getting there often lags. Therefore, how we adapt the use of technology and how the sector evolves to emerging solutions determines how we respond to our patients, and even how we are able to continue to improve our delivery models as we adapt to an older population.
In a very real sense, improving productivity is at the core of this challenge (or opportunity, if you choose to see it that way). To maintain high standards of care quality and outcomes, we most focus on productivity improvements. At the center of this core is communication, and it’s broken. For example, a home health nurse calls the doctor, the nurse cant’s get ahold of him or her and must try to call again, or try to reach the physician on a mobile phone or try, again, to triage the patient’s problem through a phone tree.
Some of the communication issues faced here map to weak workflow. Additionally, outdated technology can create barriers to clinical collaboration. Some of the usual suspects — pagers, phone systems and faxes — all have their issues and their limitations. For example, phones lines are often overburdened and fax machines are ubiquitous – healthcare is one of the sectors that still use fax technology the most (except for the country of Japan!)
These forbearing technologies are all very important solutions, but there are challenges. There are severe limitations, especially at the point of care. Email fails in home health. Email is not a real-time communication tool, and senders have no idea if email has engaged the receiver, or if the message actually has been read. There simply no way to track the metrics of email as a communication tool.
Likewise, some messaging solutions like SMS and basic text messaging violates HIPAA – pure and simple. SMS is not encrypted. With text messaging technology you are unable to verify who the sender and receiver is, and even encrypted apps meant to deliver secured messages have not signed business partner agreements to prevent from leakage of PHI.
On the other hand, DeVero business partner, TigerText, sends 10 million secure messages per day across 6,000 facilities. As is well understood by all in healthcare, secure messaging is vitally needed. TigerText’s centralized messaging through the DeVero EHR, delivers the right information at the right time to the right person, leading, ultimately, to improved productivity for care givers, unit leaders and administrators. Through it, you can see how to take action on information and deliver results with it.
Enterprise-grade messaging communication solutions provide encryption and user authentication for HIPAA compliance, security and control of information flow to users and those they need to communicate with. Likewise, centralized messaging solutions replaces existing systems, like pagers, and delivers messages and information directly to a device, like a phone (BYOD or provisioned devices), for actionable results. Messaging becomes the centralized communications infrastructure to improve process to: lower re-admissions; to reduce length of patient care; to improve patient satisfaction; and even expedite patient throughput, for example.
Additionally, centralized messaging in home health can help phone tag games — removing any on-the-fly systems many facilities currently utilize. With a group messaging system, all parties can be notified immediately without the need for administrators to place multiple calls to several people and try to make changes in a changing environment, for example, when there are visit cancellations.
Embedded centralized communication system better workflows. With standalone messaging there’s no control of the workflow, and users most likely must switch between apps and there’s likely a loss of quality to the user experience. With embedded messaging systems, the workflows are designed for the specific agency, user engagement is deepened, and the brand experience is likely improved.
Finally, centralized embedded messaging solutions can connect directly through your EHR, and can easily be added on to home health agency communication solutions. Through it, you are able to employ individual or group messaging to address such tasks as immediately filling open visits by messaging the team, improving care coordination by allowing your team the ability to discuss a specific or multiple patient cases; communication can be edited and saved directly into the patient chart; care givers can see when team members are online, as well as their status and when they view their messages. Team leaders also can push notifications directly to employees’ phones and into DeVero, for example.
Likewise, you’re able to mark messages as high priority – when clinician reads a message, the messaging system logs a read response to notate time read of each message — and you can create any group to communicate with, like nurses or nurses by region, etc.; however you best want to manage your staffing, you can do so.
Embedded centralized communication systems, through technology like Tiger Text, can help manage communication for care coordination to improve outcomes, like what was done on the last patient visit and what will be done on the next visit. Any texts sent from such a messaging system are encrypted, and each message has a life span that can be customized by organization.
The use cases for such technology are virtually endless: one-on-one instant messaging, shift and care coordination, communication from anyone from remote staff to back office, images can be added through such a solution directly into the chart – no images are ever stored within an individual user’s devices. Also, any photos can we wiped remotely and all exchanges, like their text counterparts – are HIPAA compliant.
Centralized embossed technology use, in conjunction with the DeVero EHR, provide obvious benefits, many of them listed above, but there are many other reasons for home health agencies to consider implementing such technology in an effort to improve patient care, operational efficiency and even increased organizational efficiency. (You can see what an embedded secure messaging solution in an EHR/EMR here)
To find out how, listen to a replay of our free webinar on the topic, “Improving Clinical Coordination with Secure Messaging” by clicking here: https://www.devero.com/resources/webinars/webinar-improving-clinical-coordination-secure-messaging/