Improved awareness of medical errors, a higher-than-average number of uninsured US citizens, and escalating healthcare costs have highlighted the need for improvement in today’s patient care and healthcare as a whole. As hospital leaders and managers know better than anyone, healthcare facilities are complex organizations. Therefore, every professional on the floor needs to be on the same page to provide effective patient-centered care. While failing to adhere to protocols and procedures leads to frustration, other processes that focus on patient-centered care can significantly influence patient care quality and outcomes.
These days, various efforts around cost-cutting, efficiency, care coordination, and patient safety are underway. In addition, processes are being constantly evaluated to ensure improvements in service delivery. More healthcare facilities are working on initiatives that boost healthcare quality, whether by hiring more competent staff or purchasing modern medical equipment. So, if you’re a healthcare facility manager or provider looking for ways to improve patient care in their healthcare facility, then you have come to the right place. We’ve listed a few approaches below.
Ensure that employees understand their roles
One of the most common reasons patient care quality inside a healthcare facility takes a hit is when employees fail to own their roles. For instance, the front desk staff might think nurses are responsible for admitting patients. In contrast, the nurses may think it is the physician’s job. So they keep playing ‘pass the ball.’ However, every staff member must take full responsibility to ensure improved patient-centered care. Everyone has to play an equally important role, from ensuring that patients’ needs have been met before discharging them to treating every patient with dignity and respect.
So, whether you’ve hired a healthcare systems engineering graduate to improve routine operations or a nurse manager to lead a team, ensure that every individual knows their job description. Not to mention whether they are doing their jobs effectively or not. You will have to set KPIs and goals to track performance
Set facility-wide and department-wide goals
There is a reason why businesses across every sector set goals for their workforce- to track employees’ performance and create efficient work paths. Goals and objectives motivate your employees to work harder and more intelligently. Therefore, healthcare facilities should be full of such goal-oriented individuals. After all, you must have goals and objectives and set a high benchmark to have a successful career in the healthcare field.
That said, the easiest way to bring everyone together is to set patient survey response goals. Ask yourself what score do you require as an organization? A unit? a floor? If you set the bar high for your employees, they will rise to the occasion and ensure that patients remain satisfied with better quality of care.
Improve access to healthcare
One way to improve care quality and patient outcomes in healthcare facilities is by providing easy access to services. After all, every patient needs to have access to the appropriate care at the right time to get satisfactory results. However, unluckily, around fifteen percent of the entire population still doesn’t have medical insurance, drastically decreasing patients’ access to quality, on-time care. Such a thing forces them to look for costly alternatives, or sometimes, they don’t receive care at all.
However, with the help of robust workplace wellness programs and 24/7 clinics, healthcare facilities can provide timely, effective care to patients. Any efforts to collaborate, share information and connect with everyone across the healthcare facility to make healthcare more accessible for patients is a step in the right direction. Furthermore, according to a Deloitte report, healthcare facilities innovating to provide more connected and convenient care to patients will be well-prepared to stay ahead of the curve.
Collaborate with other healthcare organizations
Healthcare facilities that want to improve their quality of patient care need to consistently research and look at what other healthcare organizations are doing right. So, consider falling back to the goals and objectives you’ve set and look at what other healthcare facilities are doing to excel in those departments. That said, to find such healthcare organizations, look at ones that are experiencing the most success as far as patient satisfaction levels and outcomes are concerned. Then, once you identify them, reach out to them and collaborate with them. After all, today’s patients aren’t limited by geographical restrictions and keep their options open for when undergoing major procedures and surgeries.
Furthermore, even for routine and day-to-day treatments usually handled in-house, healthcare facilities are well-positioned to connect and refer patients to other healthcare organizations. In simple words, continuous collaboration with successful healthcare facilities is vital to improving patient care at your organization.
Focus on engaging your patients
Patients generally should advocate for their health. However, they first need to be engaged and educated about their condition and needs. However, something like this is easier said than done. But it is a task that healthcare facilities are well-prepared to undertake. Healthcare teams are well set to see patients’ care journeys and are influential in providing high-quality care.
These teams act as a bond that holds all components of patient-centered care together, supporting the patients long after leaving the healthcare facility. After all, patient engagement doesn’t stop when they leave the healthcare facility. It also takes on a holistic role, where practitioners connect and communicate with patients’ families, insurance providers, ensuring that they remain as healthy as possible for the foreseeable future.
Patient-centered care is not only about improving a patient’s health and well-being. It also relates to success in today’s modern healthcare setting. While it is immensely challenging to update or eliminate processes within your healthcare facility, change is undoubtedly required no matter what! According to an Agency for Healthcare report, promising improvements were shown in the quality of care because of various improvements efforts across the nation. Their findings also showed improved care provider-patient communication, higher vaccination rates, and lower death rates. So, consider the way mentioned in this article and incorporate them into your healthcare facility’s procedures and practices to improve the quality of care you provide your patients.
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