With coronavirus (COVID-19) having spread to more than 170 countries (as of today), concerns are quickly intensifying over the outbreak, and healthcare providers are on the front lines.
While other businesses across nearly every industry are closing their doors or significantly reducing their hours and services, hospitals are busy treating patients who are in need of immediate or emergency care.
Healthcare providers are receiving floods of calls from concerned patients, and many are either already seeing or preparing for an influx of patients who need to be seen and treated for potential coronavirus symptoms.
Meanwhile, these same healthcare providers who are dealing with an already stretched labor market have to figure out how out to meet the increased demand, especially considering that some of their own medical staff may be calling out sick or may be undergoing quarantine due to exposure to the virus.
In one recent example, a single case in Vacaville, California forced more than 200 hospital workers to go under quarantine due to potential exposure to infected patients, leaving them unable to work for weeks, according to a report from Kaiser Health News.
Many healthcare providers are also feeling the pinch in terms of financial productivity. With the need for more medical staff to work overtime hours and the reduction of certain high-revenue-generating services (e.g. cancelled elective procedures like orthopedic surgeries), healthcare organizations have to think about how to best leverage their resources.
One area where healthcare organizations can ensure they are maximizing their productivity in times of crisis or increased demand is by having an efficient communication system in place.
How modern communication technology can improve productivity
Many hospitals, clinics, and medical offices are still relying on traditional, on-premises phone systems that use outdated technology and more susceptible to outages, which can cause interruptions to workflow. Additionally, these older systems usually offer limited capabilities in the types of communications that can be performed, forcing healthcare organizations to partner with numerous vendors for the various telecommunication needs of their organizations.
This is not an ideal setup for healthcare providers who want to maximize their productivity and efficiency and improve the patient experience—especially at times when resources are already strained.
With a more up-to-date telecommunications system—particularly a cloud-based, VoIP system that includes a wide range of modern features—healthcare providers are ready to handle higher call volumes, preventing patients from getting busy signals, and routing them to the right responders as quickly as possible. Furthermore, a cloud-based system ensures nonstop connectivity, which helps providers avoid unnecessary downtime in service to patients.
A more modern, all-in-one system can also assist with cost controls, as healthcare providers can use a single system for a variety of telecommunication needs (phone calls, text communications, faxing, after-hours automated call routing, spam-protection technology, etc.), which can eliminate duplicative costs. And with everything being cloud-based, there is no longer a need to pay for ongoing maintenance or occasional replacement for onsite equipment.
The majority of healthcare providers have already moved to electronic health records to maximize efficiency and improve patient satisfaction. Therefore, it only makes sense to take similar steps (upgrading to more connected, state-of-the-art technology) for something as essential as the communication systems that they use to operate and serve patients on a day-to-day basis—especially in times of crisis when there’s an even greater need for fast and seamless delivery of service care.
Choosing the right communication system for your organization
If you’re looking for a telecommunication system that can help you improve your healthcare organization’s productivity both now and in the future, RingRx can provide you with the technology and service you need.
RingRx is a cloud-based, HIPAA-compliant system that offers a variety of communications capabilities through a single system. As a full-feature, enterprise-class system, RingRx can be scaled to meet the needs of healthcare organizations of all sizes, from solo-physician offices to multi-facility health systems.