Why automation is the best medicine for workflow in healthcare organizations
Healthcare spending in the United States has become a major concern. In fact, American healthcare spending is currently much higher than in other high-income countries. Administrative costs for care alone accounted for 8% of the annual budget in the US while in other countries they range from 1% to 3%. The problem is that no amount of money will ever be enough to solve the problem if there is no deeper understanding of how every workflow in healthcare organizations should be optimized. Healthcare organizations are still hostages of paper-based workflows and slow data processing. Let’s see how to change the whole deal starting with your organization.
So what’s wrong with paper-based healthcare workflows?
Although paper-based workflows are time-tested, they still come up short when compared to digital workflows. But we won’t waste your time discussing the ins and outs of this paper vs. digital debate. It’s better to just show some statistics:
So how to improve workflow in healthcare? When looking for a good solution, hospitals face many obstacles. The cornerstones of efficiency for the healthcare industry are streamlined workflows, compliance with the regulations, and patient care. Doubts still exist about whether automation can cover all these needs and facilitate processes rather than hinder them and waste a company’s resources.
Benefits of implementing workflow in healthcare organizations
About 50% of healthcare finances are wasted because of inefficient processes. The financial benefits of implementing workflow processes in healthcare organizations in the US have been between $37M and $59M in a period of five years.
A study of 189 Massachusetts medical practices showed a huge decrease in the number of malpractice claims. It dropped from 49 to 2 after electronic health records were introduced to medical workflows.
More than 75% of laboratory clinicians said that using electronic health records helped them to receive laboratory results much faster than manual methods.
Facilities that use healthcare workflow systems are able to fully audit patient records in 1.4 hours compared to 3.9 hours with paper auditing systems.
More than 82% of healthcare professionals claim that electronic prescriptions save time and minimize the amount of human input required to complete their processes.
How are automated workflows changing healthcare industry processes?
In addition to self-evident compliance with security regulations (read more about compliance automation HERE), healthcare professionals should pay attention to several medical processes that persist as inconvenient before being automated.
Patient admission and discharge
One of the main workflow concepts in healthcare is collecting approvals from necessary parties. Every document needs to be signed off by a doctor or administrator. However, in a traditionally manual and paper-based workflow, getting approvals becomes a far more tedious and time-consuming process.
This is where workflow automation comes to the rescue and Bots become extremely effective.
Bots are software robots that perform certain actions based on pre-set conditions and act either when a document is opened or after it has been completed.
Set the Role Reminder Bot so a physician won’t forget to sign a prescription. Don’t keep patients in suspense — adjust the Notification Bot and your patient will be notified once a document has been approved.
With an automated workflow, a physician and patient can exchange and sign the necessary documents in real-time and without need for regularly meeting in person.
The crucial benefit for a medical organization is a 100% HIPAA compliant workflow routing. Imagine that confidential patient documents are transferred between designated authorities and systems of records with no human interaction. You can even choose what information on documents will be visible or obscured for specific recipient roles. No privacy breaches can occur while automated routing is running.
The general atmosphere of clinics and hospitals isn’t one of pleasant or calm attitudes towards document issues for physicians. And ensuring that particular information is entered and approved by the correct individuals takes time, involves chasing people down, leads to approving documents without looking and thinking, skipping steps in a process, and so on.
Workflow development in healthcare allows for data to be automatically transferred to healthcare records, eliminating the need of having to routinely enter the same details.
For example, the architecture of airSlate is built to enable data and document exchange from any data system, e.g., CRM, ERP, Cloud Storage, SQL database, or a .csv table. Data and document exchanges are carried out via airSlate’s Bots. Simply put, you set particular conditions — and Bots fulfill them.
A recent study conducted by Forrester has shown that automating workflows can have a significant economic impact on your business over a three year period. For instance, an organization with $700 million in revenue per year and 3,800 employees worldwide can:
Reclaim approximately 40,000 hours
Save over $550,000
Get a 324% return on investment
Achieve total benefits in excess of $3 million
For small businesses, the benefits are even more tangible (so are the losses from slower, paper-based processes). Get started with workflow automation for free today!