In today’s world, the typical patient experience is often stressful, uncomfortable and fraught with unwelcome surprises. Hospitals and healthcare systems are working toward automating their administrative and financial processes to streamline the patient experience from beginning to end.
At an event on July 28, we gathered a panel of healthcare experts to speak on the theme: End-to-End Patient Engagement: Creating Customized, Consistent and Convenient Experiences. They discussed strategies for designing and delivering a straightforward, transparent and personalized patient experience.
Here are our top takeaways:
Establish a set of standards to provide a consistent patient experience
“The patient experience isn’t one thing that we do, it’s how we do everything,” said Katie LeBlue of CHRISTUS Health. She explained the benefits of health systems building their brand around the standard of care patients can expect to receive when they visit any of their facilities, similar to popular B2C franchises.
Digital channels are essential
It’s critical for hospitals in 2021 to provide opportunities for patients to engage digitally. “Patients aren’t just patients anymore,” expressed Jasper Ligon of INTEGRIS Health, “[they] are customers.”
If health systems lack digital channels, they risk losing out on revenue. When it comes to paying a bill, “it needs to absolutely be easier than paying your light bill,” Jasper argued — or patients might not do it.
Don’t overlook your back-office processes
Jeff Howes of Intermountain Healthcare shared that even with the best patient experience from a clinical perspective, “if our back-end billing experience falls short, we can lose our patients.”
From a revenue cycle perspective, implementing self-pay and transparent billing processes are key to maintaining patient trust and retaining them.
The patient voice should be your true north
“It’s critical for any system to truly understand what the patient voice is saying,” said Joan Cox of Steward Health Care, “and that’s got to be real time.”
She shared Steward has implemented a post-visit survey that directly addresses payment collection and insurance questions to keep them in continual conversation with patients. This helps them maintain a robust, proactive service recovery process rather than waiting for complaints to arise.
- Inter-departmental communication is key
When issues come up with revenue or operations, Katie relayed that being inclusive has propelled her team toward successful solutions. “It’s a matter of being transparent with those various departments so we can outline the resources needed for each department,” she said, explaining that siloed organizations can have a devastating consequence on the patient experience.
Interested in hearing more? Check out the full panel discussion and more topic-based video clips from the event by visiting the event landing page.