Categories
Healthcare Delivery

Why patient experience would be the key in the post covid world?

In January 30 2020, India recorded its first case for Corona Virus popularly known as Covid19. Since then India has seen a series of lockdowns and as we inch towards somewhat of a partial recovery, the question around the state of our healthcare system has become centre stage again.

Since the 1940’s where the Bhore committee gave its recommendations for developing the healthcare structure in India, as a nation we have been playing catch up with demand far exceeding the supply in terms of doctors, diagnostic equipment, hospital beds and medicines.

In addition the wellness programs have been struggling and preventive measures have not been very successful. In this context the corner stone of the healthcare system in India has become the hospital.

What determines a successful healthcare intervention is patient experience. Today with the advent of telehealth and the guidelines given by Medical Council of India, it becomes even more important for hospitals to focus on patient experience and add to the growth of the industry.

What is Patient Experience?

Private hospitals have long tracked patient satisfaction ratings, but they didn’t always carry great significance. While all hospitals want happy patients, most hospitals have been historically plagued with the “doctor knows best” mentality — a mentality where clinical outcomes outweigh “touchy-feely” indicators such as patient satisfaction or overall patient experience.

However, in recent years, some leading institutions in India have begun to focus more heavily on providing an outstanding patient experience. Drivers for this include growing consumerism and transparency for healthcare services and increased interest from both consumers and providers in patient-centred care.

Why Patient Experience is important to Hospitals?

Healthcare consumers increasingly view their experience with a provider as a key consideration for determining if they’ll return to or recommend the provider, largely because it remains one of the few ways consumers can differentiate providers. Over the past few decades, clinical outcomes have improved dramatically, and patients no longer view favourable outcomes as a key differentiator as these are expected. What remains is the patient’s overall experience, which encompasses everything from customer service to patient-centeredness and care coordination among providers.  Also given the growth of Tele Health, it would become even more important for hospitals to focus on patient experience in order to create a favourable experience and create the hook that would bring patients and others in the community back to the hospital.

We are working on a report on understanding the current digital levers to manage patient experience. We will be releasing the report soon.

Categories
Healthcare Delivery

Patients views may be the key to reducing medical errors says new study

Patients’ views are not often included in records of diagnostic errors, but new data released on November 5 suggest that patient and family narratives may contain key information that should formally be included in the system.
To learn more about how patient experience and patient-physician interactions might affect the risk for diagnostic error, Traber Davis Giardina, PhD, MSW, and colleagues analyzed reports submitted from January 2010 to February 2016 to the nonprofit Empowered Patient Coalition.

Categories
Healthcare Delivery

Nurses’ training key saving patient lives

The Nursing profession in India has been facing some headwinds of late. We have covered this issue in our interview with Col Binu Sharma, VP Nursing Services at Columbia Asia.

Records sho wthat nine out of ten patients admitted in hospitals receive infusion therapy – medicines administered through needles and IV – during the course of their stay for therapeutic or diagnostic purposes. Improper infusion practices may lead to complications, causing an increase in mortality, morbidity, duration of hospital stay and healthcare costs.

The importance of infusion training for nurses was discussed at the two-day 6th National conference of Infusion Nurses Society (INS), which was organized at Mumbai’s Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital.

The conference saw the launch of online courses on Infusion therapy for nurses. Utilizing the reach and ease of digital platform, the course will enable INS members to access the various infusion therapy modules and speaker presentations from previous conferences through INS website http://www.insindia.org./. The first course would be on the Peripheral IV Cannulation.

“Infusion Therapy is a comprehensive method of quality care to all patients. Online courses will educate the nurses in the scientific method of delivering and maintaining infusion with the aim of cure and prevention of Infection,” says Clare D’Mello, Assistant Nursing Superintendent, Saifee Hospital.

In a complex healthcare environment, with varied patient needs, ensuring the quality of infusion calls for best nursing practices, explains Havovi Fouzdar, GM-Nursing, Kokilaben Dhirubhai Ambani Hospital, “To ensure a patient-centered plan of care, a nurse strives to meet the infusion needs of their patients. In doing so, they need to strictly adhere to the best practices and the comprehensive INS standards help the infusion nurses to provide excellent infusion care across all practice settings.”

Along with online infusion therapy courses for the nurses, INS India is now launching an online course for its 3000 members on peripheral IV cannulation.

In the past, INS India launched an android app for the nurses and standards to help healthcare professionals, institute gold standard and evidence based protocols into patient care practices, by minimizing medication errors, treatment related complications and healthcare associated infections. The revised standards will be instrumental in ensuring safety for patients and healthcare professionals.

“The aim of these initiatives is to engage healthcare professionals to intensify the best safety and quality practices in infusion management across the country. With such online courses and Android apps, INS India wants to empower nurses with digital tools in infusion standards for better patient care,” says Col Binu Sharma, President, INS India.

Every year, close to 98,000 patients are affected by unsafe nursing practices in India.

Categories
Healthcare Delivery

Data driven approach at hospitals is changing patient engagement in India

I have always felt that we always had the data. Now what has changed is that there are tools that can use this data to develop insights. In the early 2000’s Airtel decided to outsource non core activities, but retained control over their IT projects. For Airtel IT was not a cost but a strategic advantage. Today Airtel knows a lot about their subscribers, and is slicing and dicing that data to create scenarios. These are the scenarios that help Airtel in engaging customers.

Today Hospitals in India are doing something similar. Last month I had written a piece that appeared in The Quint, where I explored how hospitals were leveraging their patient data.

Categories
Healthcare Delivery

Why Indian healthcare system needs to increase its efficiency

Recently I was greatly distressed to read the experiences of Dr Bhagwan D Aggarwal with the state of scientific research in the country. Dr Aggarwal is a scientist who had worked with University of Pennsylvania in the past and had come back to India to participate in the scientific progress of the country. After 5 years of bitter experiences he left India, to go back to the US. Though one may feel bad for the scientist and his obvious frustration at our system is evident, it made me wonder if our healthcare system is different from the world described by Dr Aggarwal