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According to the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, more than 90% of large, medium, small rural, and critical access hospitals are using certified health information technology (HIT) to support their healthcare systems, as of June 2019. For most hospitals, HIT isn’t just an innovative extra – it’s a critical part of everyday operations. From Electronic Health Records to software that helps analyze and communicate lab data to surveillance and reporting programs to support antimicrobial stewardship, having the right technology at your hospital means having a real competitive advantage. Here are a few ways that technology is helping both hospitals and patients achieve better outcomes.
Telemedicine to connect patients and providers
Telemedicine, also called telehealth, has become more popular over the past few years but adoption of the technology has exploded this year due to the pandemic. In fact, telehealth visits in the U.S. are projected to climb to 1 billion by the end of 2020.
Healthcare providers and patients being able to connect virtually saves a person from having to visit a hospital, urgent care, or medical practice in-person – and limits their exposure to the coronavirus. Telehealth visits also helped avoid overburdening emergency departments and urgent care centers as they focused on severe cases of COVID-19. Connection options can include a phone call, email, text, video visit, or even a video email.
Software-as-a-service unites and simplifies care
Bringing together care coordination in a fragmented healthcare system is a major challenge – and smart technology (or software-as-a-service (SaaS)) can help streamline and connect disparate information. SaaS platforms provide automation that delivers a holistic view of relevant lab and clinical data across departments, processes, and vendors – and then translates this data into actionable insights visualized on easy-to-use dashboards.
Here are some of benefits that SaaS can provide to improve both clinical and financial outcomes for hospitals:
Real-time Actionable Data
Capturing patient data electronically allows providers to analyze and improve processes about care efficiency and outcomes. Getting real-time, or near real-time, data on patients allows a provider to be proactive instead of reactive.
A Focus on Patient Experience
SaaS helps clinicians focus on patient care rather than administrative tasks so they can deliver a quality experience to patients and their families.