Hospice workers have schedules that keep them on their feet for most of the day. Often staff members barely have time to grab a cup of coffee or a sandwich and even less time to attend to paperwork. Reasons include the necessity to care for patients' physical, medical and psychological needs. Administrative tasks often take second place, but this becomes a serious problem when supplies aren't ordered or patient records are not properly updated since, ultimately, it's the patient who may suffer.
Fortunately, there are now mobile solutions available that simplify the chore of updating patient records and ordering essential supplies while enhancing hospice staff efficiency.The Balancing Act
Hospice providers operate by balancing the requirements of their patients with the responsibilities of administrative duties. Constant choices have to be made between the amount of time allocated to each patient, the needs of the other patients and the completion of administrative tasks that cannot be neglected:
- Patients' needs: These include their medical needs and necessities such as comfort, cleanliness, and healthy nutrition as well as their emotional health and wellbeing.
- Administrative tasks: Hospice caregivers are obliged to ensure medical records are correct and up to date with respect to treatment and medical supplies provided, as well as arranging to replenish used supplies.
- Clinicians: Hospice clinicians form relationships with patients, and as such are involved in the process of their passing. Apart from caring for the needs of their patients (and the patient's family), clinicians must also deal with the personal stress brought about by their work, and have adequate rest to avoid burnout.
While there are no cures for dealing with stress and burnout, the adoption of solutions to alleviate and streamline routine administrative functions are an important factor for ensuring that clinicians are motivated, fresh and able to perform their tasks efficiently.Tapping into Mobile Technology
According to a study published in The Permanente Journal, which evaluated how medical nurses spent their time, it was established that 35 percent of nursing practice work time was spent on documentation and administration.
The introduction of mobile technology offers a solution to reducing time lost on administrative tasks:
- Patient records: Records can be updated quickly.
- Record keeping: Patient records are automatically entered into the hospice database.
- Mobile ordering: Orders can be placed directly with suppliers, saving time and repetition.
- Availability: The use of mobile devices means these tasks can be done anywhere.
Mobile ordering systems are faster than paper-based systems while making the recorded information legible and easily shared. Additionally, records don't get lost. A good example of these types of solutions is uCommand® from Concordance Healthcare Solutions. This is a web-based supply chain management solution that provides:
- Electronic order placing
- Barcode tracking
- Interfaces with electronic medical records (EMR's)
- Mobile access
- Adding and amending patients' records
- Direct interface with multiple vendors
- Management approval processes
- Flexible and ad hoc reporting
To discover how uCommand® can help improve your staff's efficiencies, contact our nearest office and arrange a demonstration.