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Digitising patient management.

An Orthotics and Prosthetics Department within the hospital caters for over 15,000 active patients. Due to this large volume, the hospital is constantly seeking ways to improve the experience both for patients and its team. With this in mind, the OPU/PRO department embarked on a digital transformation project together with Deloitte Digital and Salesforce to look at how the introduction of digital facilitation could improve the customer experience for patients and staff alike.

Where it all started

Prior to adopting Salesforce, patient management methods were inefficient and outdated; using a mix of paper and digital processes. This approach suffered from several inefficiencies including performance issues due to database size, human errors in the data, a lack of reporting and poor security. It was clear a modern solution was required to provide faster and secure patient management that would also automate manual tasks where possible.

Setting the right approach

With Salesforce as the chosen technology solution, we had to understand how it would need to be tailored to the business. Deloitte Digital built a custom demo to introduce the platform to key stakeholders and better understand their process and capture key requirements along the way.

We also ran several collaborative workshops with stakeholders from across the management, clinician, admin and technical teams to further investigate the OPU/PRO patient management, day-to-day workload and requirements.

This resulted in new documentation that included process diagrams, consolidated requirements as well as a set of goal-oriented user stories to drive the solution forward.

Improved patient management

The first phase objectives were to have a new flexible data structure which allowed for a consolidated, 360-degree view of patients, operational improvements and meet industry security benchmarks.

Using a combination of out-of-the-box and custom-built features, clinicians can search for patients and get a full picture of the patient. Now they can easily review the patient case history, equipment assignments, referrals and upcoming appointment goals. The new interface also allows clinicians to update the system whilst in the room with a patient — removing one of the key inefficient steps from the outdated process.

Appointment management has also been digitally transformed with the use of automated emails and SMS integration. Patients receive an email and/or SMS notifications for appointment information and management. This shift immediately reduces the amount of direct letters sent to patients.

To tackle security issues, the new solution takes advantage of key Salesforce features such as encryption and auditing. Now patient data is accessed via multi-factor authentication and single sign-on methods to maintain efficiency with complete patient information protection. 

The management team’s day-to-day operations have been further streamlined with tracking and reporting across the supply chain, patient management, and referrals, but also providing the main hospital visibility to improve their own patient management function.

Some other highlights

  • The development phase followed a true agile methodology to help with speed to market.
  • Deloitte Digital carried out the data migration of over 40k records using a multi-environment approval framework to avoid continuance of human error and data leakage.
  • After UAT completion for each build phase, key documents were supplied to the relevant parties, including user guides, technical documentation and interactive training.

Scaling healthcare for continued growth

Even with just these initial phases complete, the solution not only means OPU/PRO department has improved operationally, has robust data storage and handling, a fully digitised patient management and communication facility but has ensured a foundation for further scale.

Further functionality enhancements will include:

  • An integration to Dynamics Business Central supporting the procurement and financial teams, streamlining and reducing the number of clinician and clerk access points.
  • Improvement to patient management functionality to ensure continuous improvement to internal and external processes and efficiency.