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How Hospitals Save Money with a Cloud-Based Communications System

Paul Neyman

How Hospitals Save Money with a Cloud-Based Communications System

In an emergency, a hospital becomes a fast-paced, hectic environment. While doctors, nurses, and emergency personnel run around, there are temporary visitors filing in and out, health and safety protocols to be adhered to, and scheduling and staffing needs that can change by the minute. A hospital needs a strong communications network to deliver its essential services.

A cloud-based communications system can cut down on wasted time and confusion during emergencies. While not the most important factor, a cloud-based communication system can also save money for hospitals. Here’s a look into how.

Prevents Extraneous Hiring and Staffing Hours.

One of a hospital’s major expenses is its hiring. Many hospitals breakdown salary costs into clinical, non-clinical, nursing, research, administrative, and physician costs. While some physicians are paid directly by insurance programs, others are paid directly by the hospital. Hospitals who use cloud-based communications do not have to worry about maintaining extra staff, because they can automate staffing, scheduling, and on-call personnel. Through systems like BlackBerry AtHoc for healthcare, personnel onsite and offsite are always accountable, so that you do not have to keep a deep bench of available staff ready and waiting on the payroll.

Saves on Energy and IT Outages.

From patient-monitoring to data storage, many processes in the hospital use energy. Downtime can cost hospitals and physicians. One source noted that the average cost of electronic health record (EHR) system downtime is $488 per physician. Instead of having to wait for a staff member to notice an outage, cloud-based systems like BlackBerry AtHoc can send automated alerts that report the outage and its location.

Allocates Your Personnel More Efficiently.

When your staff is onsite or nearby, you want to direct them to the most critical situations immediately. With cloud-based communications, you can click one button or program your system to send automatic alerts in the case of certain events: (cardiac, stroke, etc.). You can cut down on the time it takes to issue communications that require certain staff members’ expertise or equipment. You can also create pre-defined templates, such as staffing alerts, to cut down on the time it takes to compose a message once an emergency has begun. You don’t want to have to spend time writing all the required information when the pressure is on and personnel are awaiting instructions. Instead, configure templates ahead of time, filling in all variables and plans.

Allows for Feedback.

As opposed to one-way alerts by radio or PA system, cloud-based systems can be configured for two-way communication. That means that hospital staff can report details and incident statuses in real-time using customized dashboards. Hospital managers can gain immediate visibility into a health emergency and make critical decisions more quickly. Separate templates and plans by location, department, team, or access level.

Standardizes Processes.

This is perhaps the most important way that cloud-based communications save money for hospitals. Cloud-based systems allow hospitals to standardize their care procedures. For example, they might follow a streamlined protocol with testing or checkups, and used cloud-based systems to quickly record and communicate the results to all applicable parties. By customizing workflows, doctors and nurses can save their time and energy for unique circumstances that require their full attention. A faster patient turnaround with better patient outcomes results in more efficient overall service at the hospital. It also cuts down on unnecessary operations, which can save on staff and patient costs.

In Summary...

Using the cloud to communicate is a win-win for hospitals. The cloud is more secure than a manual system, which means that no costly system failures can cause setbacks or data loss. By enabling more efficiency and better patient outcomes, cloud-based communications helps hospitals allocate resources without waste or mismanagement.

Learn more about how BlackBerry AtHoc customers use AtHoc’s crisis communication platform to manage alerts, IT outages, and more across hospitals and medical centers.

Paul Neyman
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