Managing Patient Experience during a pandemic

May 14, 2020

 

Managing Patient Experience during a pandemic

May 14, 2020

COVID-19 has taken its toll on everyone- no industry, business or institution has been immune to the effects of this pandemic.

The healthcare sector, in particular, has had to rejig itself significantly to deal with the virus with healthcare systems across the world coming under a lot of stress. Patient Experience as we know it has been sidetracked completely. Any elective surgery or treatment has been deferred in most hospitals around the world, with fighting the CoronaVirus being the major focus. 

 

Although healthcare workers globally have responded to the crisis with agility, people suffering from non-COVID related ailments have had to wait – oftentimes by themselves, as those with compromised immune systems, or at higher risk of comorbidity due to the CoronaVirus are exercising caution by staying home. 

 

However, as the world adjusts to the new normal, the healthcare industry must adapt swiftly. Here are a few things that can help hospitals ensure that patient care remains at a level expected of them.

Measure Patient Experience at every touchpoint

At this time, it’s unlikely that anyone would visit a hospital without having a strong enough reason for doing so because people understand the risks of exposure to the virus. It’s reasonable to assume that a patient’s first touchpoint would be a phone call, a mobile app or website. 

Healthcare providers should consider surveying patients to see how their patient experience has been impacted. Time permitting, healthcare staff should also be surveyed to see just how they’re coping with the limitations and constraints posed by the pandemic. A human touch perhaps via phone surveys would be better to have an empathetic conversation and elicit rich responses from health workers. Insights gathered during times like these can enable health organisations to see where their services are falling short and allow them to chart a path towards rectifying them.

Telemedicine – is it working as you’d hoped?

The advent of high-speed mobile network coverage made it possible for telemedicine to really take off over the last couple of years. However, this is a crisis that seems to be uniquely suited to finding out if your telemedicine offerings are up to scratch. You can expect that your IT Infrastructure will come under considerable stress, as more and more patients opt for e-health solutions for what they deem to be non-life-threatening issues.

Surveying your patients will give you insights which show whether they are receiving the quality of medical care that is expected from your brand while pointing out glaring issues should there be any. A seamless telemedicine experience will ensure that your patient satisfaction levels remain consistently good. In general, improving telemedicine apps will also require taking user feedback via surveys from both doctors & patients.

Privacy concerns

Several hospital chains and governments across the world have released apps that help track corona infections. Generally, the app surveys the user about their general health and tracks their location. No doubt this has raised more than a few eyebrows – with data privacy being an important consideration for most people these days. 

However, these apps undoubtedly help, and one should consider surveying the general public to know their concerns. Surveys can help identify their exact concerns & these insights can be used to tweak the app flow & messaging (product experience). Mass scale adoption is necessary to battle COVID so that proper contact tracing can be done. Messaging tweaks that inform people how their data is being used and why it’s important they participate can make a significant difference 

Voxco is trusted by researchers across verticals in 30+ countries. Our powerful Omnichannel Patient Experience survey software can help you systematically measure & improve Patient Experience.