A report conducted by Chilmark Research at a number of US hospitals indicates that the real-time use of data would enable better management of patient care. Such a move would require the roll-out of adapted tools and systems.
An increasing number of US hospitals are looking to improve their ‘patient experience’ with a view to increasing the quality and effectiveness of treatment and in an effort to be more competitive. Much needs to be done before that can happen, however, particularly in terms of IT, both for staff and patients: “We must digitize moments that can be, and humanize moments that must be,” said Adrienne Boissy, chief experience officer at the Cleveland Clinic, in an interview with HealthcareITNews.
Chilmark Research polled a group of US hospital chiefs as part of a recent study, which confirmed the need for IT tools as a means of improving the patient experience and, more specifically, analysing patient data in real time rather than at a later stage.
Hospitals lacking in technology
The report indicates that hospitals collect patient experience data for the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) but that only a few of them have technology at the point of care for collecting data in real time or near-real time.
“Healthcare organizations recognize the importance of collecting data about the patient experience at the point of care, both to address issues that an individual patient might be facing and to identify problems within a department or business unit,” explained report author Brian Eastwood.
Systems adapted to each case
There are now a number of point-of-care survey vendors on the market, among them Allen Technologies, Care Analytics, EveryPatient, MyRounding, Mytonomy, Opinionmeter, and Patient Wisdom Phreezia. In Eastwood’s opinion, hospitals should pay close attention to the platform, its functionality and usability.
The most essential function is the identification and addressing of problems as quickly as possible after the patient leaves hospital or, ideally, when they are admitted. The report noted that hospitals are also looking for tools that can be used across as many services as possible and that can integrate with electronic health records.
Eastwood stressed the importance of testing these systems in clinical settings, as future users will have widely varying profiles. User feedback on their experience during this test phase will be useful not only for hospitals but for suppliers too, as it would allow them to tailor their products to needs.
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