Running a healthcare practice requires balancing patient needs, staff well-being, expenditures versus income, and the demands of insurers in terms of reporting to get proper reimbursement. Without a streamlined, standardized process from beginning to end, these challenges can become overwhelming and ultimately even force the closure of a clinic or practice. Here are a few of the most common healthcare errors and how to prevent them.
Clunky Patient Registration Process
Using outdated or poorly designed registration for new patients is both time-consuming and damaging to a clinic’s reputation. Nobody, patients or staff, wants to sift through unnecessary paperwork or struggle to understand forms. Several onboarding practices can make the process smoother. These include data capturing with mobile devices that provide access at all points of care and customized forms presented to each patient depending on his or her insurance situation, native language, or the procedure he or she is visiting the clinic to receive.
Running Staff Ragged
Burnout among healthcare providers, especially those working in hectic environments like ER rooms or understaffed clinics, is a major concern for employers. Burnout drags productivity, decreases patient satisfaction, hurts health outcomes, and even forces qualified and competent providers to quit the profession altogether. When doctors, nurses, and other staff are too rushed or tired, they start making mistakes. Mistakes can ruin a healthcare practice. Make sure your staff get adequate breaks and time off, from surgeons to receptionists.
Failing to Use Technology Effectively
Any public health advocacy organization will cite high administrative cost as a major burden on healthcare providers. These increase the cost of care and require staff to spend time filing paperwork that they could otherwise spend tending to patients. Fortunately, telehealth, the use of telecommunications to provide and streamline care, can help all practices from small community clinics to large hospitals cut costs by making the administrative processes more automated and clearer. Patient records, for example, can now be stored securely on a cloud server, reducing redundancy in form-filling as well as mistakes caused by human error. Patient registration can now be performed automatically using telehealth technology. Moving forward, many aspects of care, even including surgery as demonstrated recently with a remote 5G heart surgery operation, will be performed either remotely or using artificial intelligence, freeing up resources for human-to-human care.
Healthcare practices can be crippled by clunky patient registrations, poor employee allocation, and failure to use the technology available to them. But although operational challenges for health providers can be daunting, a strong and efficient organizational plan will work wonders.