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February 3, 2020

Extinguishing the Effects of Burnout to Improve the Patient Experience

Providers work long hours to care for a growing number of patients while compliance requirements are expanding the time spent on non-clinical paperwork. In fact, for every hour that physicians meet with patients, nearly two additional hours are spent on EHRs and desk work. So what is the result of this added time and pressure?

Burnout can be felt by all members of a care team including physicians, pharmacists, nurses and support staff. But the most important person in thePhysician Burnout care team often feels your burn the most - the patient. Why? Physician and staff burnout leads to symptoms such as long wait times, lack of authentic/empathetic personal encounters, decreased facetime and inadequate care.

Making matters worse, this public health crisis comes at a time when patients are demanding expanded services and improved healthcare experiences from their providers. This growing crisis is causing a “chain of frustration” for patients and with burnout occurring at such high rates, it’s no wonder that 81% of today’s consumers are unsatisfied with their healthcare experience.

How can physicians extinguish the burn felt by both their staff and patients? By leveraging the right technology to take control of their practice. Here’s how these five tools can help:

  1. Electronic Document Management. This solution allows staff and providers to easily manage and triage messages. This helps reduce “pajama time” in which many providers complete administrative tasks at home after hours.
  2. Electronic Fax. For every 5,000 fax pages sent or received, a practice spends an average of $155 on supplies - and exponentially more on productivity time involved with office supply procurement and manual faxing. eFax allows offices to reduce time and financial burdens by eliminating the cost of paper, toner and shredding.
  3. Automated Appointment Reminders: It is reported that 23% of patients forget to show up for their appointments, costing the average practice about $104,000 a year. With customizable, automated appointment reminders, you can ensure patients keep their appointments and have the information needed before a visit.
  4. SMS Messaging: It takes an average of three phone calls to connect with a patient to tell them their lab results are normal. Text messaging lets staff and providers easily and efficiently send information to patients or fellow providers. SMS allows staff to stop leaving countless voicemails and instead focus their time on what truly matters -- patients.
  5. Telehealth. Options like video chat allow for quick remote check-ins, lower costs from unnecessary office visits, and provides options for patients who are homebound, in rural areas or unable to travel into the office.

Technology That Improves Provider Lives and Patient Experience

For some, technology itself is part of the frustration that leads to physician burnout. Especially if you’re one of the more than 60% of respondents in our 2019 Healthcare Technology Report that said they rely on four or more different technology solutions to manage daily functions.

This lack of integration between multiple different systems was cited as the technology challenges most negatively impacting healthcare practices. At a time when burnout is at a code red, it’s vital that providers select the right technology that offers all-in-one, tailored solutions to streamline repetitive tasks, eliminate redundancy and give back control so that you can focus on what matters most—delivering care. That’s why we’ve designed a fully integrated healthcare collaboration platform that helps providers improve care coordination, patient engagement and staff productivity all in one place. 

Ready to put aside the mundane administrative duties to get back to the rewarding part of healthcare? Download our "It’s Time to Heal Healthcare" white paper for more ways healthcare technology can help improve the lives of providers. 

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Topics: Blog, Physician Burnout, Physician Burnout Solutions, patient experience