By EWN • 30 December 2022 • 12:39
The Healthcare space has changed dramatically over the last few years. COVID-19 made it impossible for clinics to offer the same level of care and forced them to enter the digital space. Even though it was hard for most organisations and the situation is getting better, this digitalisation brought many benefits for doctors and patients alike.
Whether you run a private medical practice or are an owner of a clinic, embracing technology is not a choice – it is a must-have in today’s world. Users now want to have easy and quick access to the clinic’s services without waiting days until the appointment is booked. That is why clinics and therapists should upgrade their technology solutions if they already have some in place.
Digitalisation doesn’t always involve app development. Below we will share some tips that will help you digitise your medical practice without breaking the bank.
The first step in your healthcare practice digitalisation is developing a website. Since building an app is usually a great idea for clinics and large organisations, if you have a small team or a personal practice – you can always start with a website. This way, you will allow your potential clients to explore open spaces in the schedule you have and let them book consultations online.
Since the market is vast and highly competitive, the website will allow you to build patient trust and boost your visibility by showcasing your mission, vision, values, as well as expertise on your website. Your website will work like an appointment booking engine and give you a competitive advantage.
Once the website is ready, you will need to invest in SEO. Search engine optimisation is a process where you use keywords and optimise your content to rank higher in search engines like Google. Just having a website doesn’t give you anything if users don’t know about you. That is why SEO for orthodontists allows you to attract potential customers, increase your visibility as well as rank higher.
Regardless of how many patients you have daily or monthly, you must preserve medical records for future reference. That is why most clinics use an electronic medical record system as the best way to digitise the health records of their patients. This system is popular and used by organisations all over the world since it automates the process of documentation, storage, and retrieval of medical data and documents. It also allows you to rely on it for scheduling and tracking prescriptions. Also known as EMR, this software is specially designed to save space and make your practice paperless.
Using medical billing software is also a vital part of digitising your medical practice. This software allows clinics and therapists to easily track billing records, increasing transparency to medical invoicing systems and preventing payment issues. In addition, it provides extra convenience and speed for patients, reducing the waiting time and offering easy payment options.
Still not convinced that healthcare practice digitalisation is necessary in today’s hypercompetitive world? Let’s explore some benefits of healthcare industry digitalisation:
Digitisation makes it much easier for doctors to maintain a patient’s history. The days when all this data had to be maintained by patients in a physical file at every doctor’s appointment are gone. Medical history is essential information for both sides, so it should be easily accessible in emergency situations when a physical copy may not be with a patient. This way, digitalisation helps keep the clinic informed about the patient’s medical history regardless of the situation.
Statistics show that average administrative expenses in the US account range from 25% to 31% of total hospital expenditures. This number is higher than in any other first-world country. In fact, there is an alarming report that modern doctors spend less than a third of their time caring about their patients since they have too many tasks that are always prioritised. This may include entering patient data into the electronic health records system.
Even though this was a way every clinic worked years ago, there is no need or time for these tasks in modern healthcare environments. That is why digitalisation made it possible for smooth and seamless automation. For example, clinics can now use artificial intelligence (AI) systems which are excellent in helping automate lots of tasks that previously were done by doctors, like offering prescription advice and reminders.
Some patients require several doctors since they have complex and severe conditions. And even located in one clinic, these doctors may not have communication to effectively treat the patient. Luckily, digitalisation helps establish effective and seamless communication in real time between doctors in one or even in different clinics. This allows the patient to reduce the need to bring all documents to one and then another clinic. At the same time, doctors have an opportunity to deliver better care without wasting time on reentering information every time.
Last but not least benefit of healthcare digitalisation is data security. Clinics and healthcare organisations all over the world waste lots of money on security issues, making cybersecurity an essential part of any business in this domain. Sensitive patient data is always one of the most attractive targets for hackers. Since there is always a chance to lose medical records to unexpected occasions such as natural disasters or hacker attacks, digitalisation makes it easier for clinics to boost their data security.
2-factor authentication and blockchain-based apps allow clinics to store data safely and avoid costly mistakes. Digitalisation also helps clinics to back up data and keep it in one yet safe place so even in case of an attack; companies are able to get the data back without paying attackers.
Digitising your healthcare practice is essential in modern realities. While it helps you stay relevant in the long term, it also boosts patient care and makes it easier for you to run your business. The good thing is that you don’t need to break the bank to achieve this. Following the steps we mentioned above is enough.
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