Healthcare providers all over the nation have been struggling to keep revenue coming in due to the unexpected and unprecedented challenge of COVID-19.
With non-essential medical procedures having been put under hiatus for so long, it has been extremely challenging for hospitals and medical practices to stay on track with their financial targets for 2020, and even as they reopen for more services, they’re still facing the challenge of not being able to operate at their usual capacity.
With these challenges in mind, many healthcare organizations and medical practice owners will need to be especially creative in their business strategies for the remainder of 2020, as well as for the year 2021. In addition to navigating a plethora of new safety protocols (from the use of PPE to additional office sanitation), these providers also have to adjust to continued stretches of reduced patient and revenue volume. (In a recent survey of healthcare providers, half of respondents said it will take at least until the end of 2020 for elective procedure volume to return to pre-pandemic levels, and 89% of hospital and health system executives expect their end-of-year revenue figures for 2020 to fall below what they generated in 2019.)
At the end of the day, these challenges put a strain on a healthcare organization’s or practice’s ability to keep up with their business expenses, including payroll. In the same study cited above, 76% of respondents said labor adjustments will be an area of focus for future cost reductions coming out of the pandemic.
One way for healthcare organizations and practices to make a stronger recovery from their losses and create greater stability for their staff members moving forward is to closely evaluate their business operations and identify areas where they can maximize efficiency — specifically finding ways to achieve higher productivity at more manageable costs. One area that is often overlooked as a possible area of improvement is the organization or practice’s telecommunications infrastructure.
A Closer Look at Your Communications Framework
Communication is an integral part of any healthcare center or practice’s operations, including both external communicating with patients and internal communication between medical personnel. Yet many healthcare providers are still relying on outdated, on-premises phone system equipment that result in inefficient workflows and ultimately cost them more time, money, and resources.
These traditional, on-premises phone systems have a tendency to:
- Come with high, upfront purchase, maintenance, and replacement costs that put a strain on the organization’s cash flow
- Become more susceptible to connectivity issues that disrupt your team’s productivity and negatively impact the patient experience
- Put a strain on your IT team due to the need to maintain equipment on-site and troubleshoot connectivity failures
In turn, a more modern, cloud-based telecommunication systems tend to:
- Come with costs that are more spread out and manageable due to being charged on a monthly service plan rather than through an upfront capital investment
- Better protect your organizations from call downtime (dropped calls, busy signals, etc.) due to your phone system operating through the Internet and being powered through off-site servers
- More bandwidth for your IT staff to focus on other important initiatives for your organization (your IT professionals are likely not phone system experts, nor do they want to be)
With an improved telecommunications system, your healthcare organization or practices becomes more efficient and fewer strains on your budget, which makes room for greater productivity and potential savings — and the better financial shape your organization is in, the easier it is to preserve your headcount.
If you’re looking for a way to streamline your operations and create greater stability for your healthcare business both now and in the future, you may want to rethink your solution for your phone system. For a more in-depth look at how restructuring your telecommunications model can be a game changer for your healthcare center, clinic, or private practice, read this post.
RingRx is a HIPAA-compliant, cloud-based phone system that gives healthcare providers an all-in-one, seamless solution for their communication needs, including calls, faxes, patient engagement text, and more. Learn more about RingRx here.