As technology's role in healthcare grows, so too does the opportunity for non-clinical or lower-level staff members to assist in myriad tasks, giving doctors and nurses more time to address complex cases.
A recent report by the Brookings Institute explores the role of medical campuses in innovation districts--geographic areas where "leading-edge institutions and companies cluster, connect with start-ups, [business] anchors and accelerators."
That kind of setting, according to an article that accompanies the report, would allow medical facilities to better train and supervise staff members in IT techniques and practices. Workers with advanced training can help streamline care by conducting screenings and simple tests, providing immunizations and coaching patients with chronic diseases, for example.
With lower-level employees taking on more routine tasks, doctors and nurses will be able to devote more time to helping patients who need specialized treatment. This is especially important as hospitals work to spotlight value-based, quality-focused care by improving care coordination and taking a more active role in improving patient engagement, patient navigation and physician engagement.
More engaged care also allows healthcare facilities to expand their brand to attract new patients. Improved staff responsiveness and availability is a dominant factor in a patient's willingness to recommend a facility to others, as FierceHealthcare previously reported.
There's a financial incentive, too. A recent report from the Grattan Institute said public hospitals could save almost $430 million a year by expanding responsibilities for nursing assistants, allied health assistants and registered nurses.