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No industry has been more directly affected by the pandemic than healthcare. From hospitals and caregivers to health insurance companies, all aspects of the healthcare industry have been reoriented by the virus. But self-service technology in healthcare can help.
As those industries look for how to best serve their clients and provide safe, contact-free services, they should be evaluating technological solutions to items usually dealt with pen and paper or face-to-face meetings.
Every industry, but especially healthcare, must make sure that they are doing everything they can to protect those who it employs and serves. In today’s climate, that means making sure that proactive steps are being taken to ensure safety.
More and more organizations are looking for simple screenings they can administer to make sure employees and anyone they may interface with are not showing symptoms of COVID-19. In the absence of being able to wave a magic wand and receive an instant diagnosis, the screenings themselves and the agreements that govern them need to be legally sound, practically effective, and quickly completed.
Self-service is the best way to implement this kind of screening. Providing a hub that employees or visitors can easily access via mobile or web browser allows for easy adoption by departments and organizations.
Healthcare organizations have traditionally relied on pen and paper forms. Any visit to a caregiver involves a heavy dose of paperwork, but in a time that demands remoteness, this needs to be replaced with digital solutions.
By using technology to eliminate those pen and paper forms, healthcare organizations are freeing up their time to provide better care. Digital forms can be filled out by patients before they ever arrive to the hospital, which means shorter wait times and less contact between patients and staff, as well as between patients. Additionally, digital documents can be processed faster than old-fashioned pen and paper agreements. The ability to process that information quicker could be helpful when trying to process patients in a timely manner.
Hospitals, health organizations, and even healthcare business associates may have security concerns about transitioning to digital. But it is possible to move digital and remain secure.
While hospitals are working to update their processes, the pandemic has disrupted insurance companies’ workflows as well.
Given the dramatic effect COVID-19 has had, insurance providers find themselves needing to grant special qualifying life events (QLEs) at a rate that far exceeds the standard day-to-day business of years prior. With that extra work hitting desks, the need for efficiencies in other areas becomes all the more important. Granting limited coverage to enrollees for events outside of their coverage takes a serious amount of work hours to address.
Because of this extra work, the need for increased efficiency is paramount. As with hospitals, self-service can provide a great lift. QLEs can be standardized, and finding ways to quickly reach agreements with enrollees means more time can be dedicated to addressing the downstream effects of COVID-19.
While it can be intimidating in times like these to take steps to change the status quo and do something far different that you'd ever done. But it can often be the best solution. Concerns over a lengthy onboarding process are well-founded, but not every technological solution requires a computer science degree to decode.
By working with third-party partners (and conducting careful evaluations of their systems), you adopt a comprehensive solution that doesn't take too long to implement. Taking away that ramp-up time will ensure efficiencies in the medium and long term, and that will prove to be a worthwhile investment.
PactSafe has created a resource for healthcare providers and business associates facing the sudden need to move fast during COVID-19.