Gary Kolbeck from LodgeNet Healthcare, a solution provider at the marcus evans National Healthcare CXO Summit Fall 2010, on driving better outcomes by engaging patients in the care process.
Interview with: Gary Kolbeck, General Manager - LodgeNet Healthcare
To drive better outcomes, the patient needs to be in the center of the care process, advises Gary Kolbeck, General Manager - LodgeNet Healthcare. By engaging patients through interactive services, nurses will have more time to spend where they are needed and people will be better informed about the medications they require, thereby reducing re-admission rates. From a solution provider company at the marcus evans National Healthcare CXO Summit Fall 2010 taking place in Las Vegas, October 24-26, Kolbeck shares his vision of how healthcare can be transformed by utilizing interactive services.
What should healthcare organization CEOs focus on?
Gary Kolbeck: “Due to the many struggles Healthcare CEOs and CIOs are facing, they are starting to look at Meaningful Use by deploying electronic medical records which will assist in capturing and tracking appropriate patient data. Meaningful Use criteria revolve around transforming healthcare, and the best way to achieve that would be by engaging patients in the care process. Hospitals should share information with the patients, by providing access to their electronic medical records and clinical data. This way, healthcare organizations can maximize the value of their Meaningful Use investments.
In order to drive better outcomes, the patient needs to be in the center of the care process, and physicians should be consultants instead of trying to have full control.”
How can this be done effectively?
Gary Kolbeck: “When educating a patient in safety or diagnostics, organizations can combine their efforts in video, print and bedside care. To drive comprehension of education, they may provide material in a video format instead of just presenting someone a piece of paper to read; metrics have proven that comprehension increases by 40 per cent through video format. The best way to drive utilization is to provide more information in addition to receiving treatment from hospital staff. We are in an era where websites like YouTube are providing access to video content that is clinically relevant and in some cases healthcare organizations need to embrace this form of learning.”
How can interactive services reduce readmission rates?
Gary Kolbeck: “From a C-suite perspective, there is a lot more return on your investment as you get back some of the nurse’s time which was previously spent on unnecessary actions. Only 12 per cent of nurse call button presses require a nurse. There is the technology for patients to send direct requests to the person they want to reach, therefore nurses do not have to manage all the calls, giving them more time to spend where they are needed.
The reporting and comprehension questions can be tracked directly to electronic medical records, and this is where we start to see benefits. The more information we share with patients while they are in hospital, the better questions they ask, which leads them to better understand their condition. This reduces re-admission. Simply put, patients that are better educated and engaged in their care process are more likely to understand the steps necessary to take care of themselves and that makes for better outcomes.”
How do these services help lead the way to more personalized patient care?
Gary Kolbeck: “Included in the new direction healthcare is headed is more emphasis on the engagement people need on a personalized basis. Healthcare is becoming more individualized, including social media tools where people can continue to learn more.
By using the patient education solution in an automated format, doctors can prescribe content specifically based on a patient’s diagnosis, allergies, or bad habits; for example, a smoking cessation video to a smoker with bad lungs.
It is important to use devices that people already know how to use, such as a television where they can communicate in a friendly and easy environment.”
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