Deliver Better Patient Care in the Healthcare Industry with These 4 Process Management Tips

In May, FireStart attended Process Day – a dedicated process management event for the healthcare sector. In talks, seminars, and interesting discussions with attendees, we learned and shared insights and best practices into current process management trends.

Processes are the driving force behind what we do. Usually, process management is geared solely toward corporate businesses. However, it's easy to forget that every industry can benefit from understanding how its processes run. The healthcare industry is no exception.

Doctors, nurses, specialists, and all personnel involved in keeping people well can benefit from understanding and optimizing their processes. After all, a process is simply the method of achieving a goal with a series of interrelated tasks.

Nurses and doctors have a hard time "thinking in processes"

It's true that while processes should be simple and uncomplicated, the fact is that this way of thinking doesn't come naturally to most. Nurses and doctors have a lot to think about, the care of their patients being their top priority.

Especially when situations turn from run-of-the-mill to a crisis situations, it is hard for medical personnel to follow a pre-defined process if it's kept in a manila folder in a filing cabinet.

4 ways business process management (BPM) is helping healthcare management processes

Although process management can seem like it's only for the board of directors, having a defined process in the healthcare industry is super valuable.

Having defined processes for medical staff creates more resiliency in crisis situations and better daily functioning. Staff members know who is responsible for each task, eliminating confusion and miscommunication, while also being able to keep track of processes leading to better transparency and less risk.

For these reasons and more, business process management (BPM) and business process automation (BPA) is revolutionizing the way medical staff approaches their daily work.

Here are 4 more benefits of implementing business process management in healthcare.

1. Business process management helps medical institutes remain compliant

Remaining compliant in the healthcare industry is absolutely imperative to protect both doctors and patients. Certifications such as ISO 9001 or “EasyLiving” need documented process maps in order to ensure compliance.

While every medical professional will attest to the importance of these certifications, it’s often one step harder to prove the compliance necessary to obtain these certifications.

Process maps are essential to remaining compliant, yet many medical professionals struggle to create one complete map that covers everything.

With process modeling and automation tools like FireStart, medical teams can start to understand their process ecosystem better by mapping the whole process out digitally and assigning roles. This not only makes patient care more accurate to the patient's needs but also ensures proper compliance and ensures detailed record keeping.

BPM goes beyond small-scale automations and instead, covers the breadth of a process from end to end. Additionally, BPM can integrate with smaller-scale automations to better organize robotic process automation in healthcare.

2. Reduce risk on the floor in daily operations

The risk of failure in hospitals is high. Everything must run as it is supposed to in order to save lives and avoid legal consequences. Therefore, having a risk management process in the healthcare industry is of the utmost importance.

Hospitals fall in the direct line of fire for one wrong treatment given or one incorrect piece of information given to a patient. It’s a scary reality without digitization.

  • Process governance can ensure best-practice training and complete knowledge transfer. All medical personnel will always be informed about their field, contacts, and who the main approver is.

  • BPM drastically reduces the risk of failure and boosts transparency. Everyone from the receptionist to the main surgeon is aligned, reducing the risk that comes from miscommunication. BPM can be seen as the foundation for more resiliency and agility in the healthcare industry.

  • BPA on the other hand has additional benefits for medical experts. Healthcare process automation can ensure medicine quality, keep machinery checkup procedures compliant, keep patients and families informed, and track certification of the institute. 

3. Improve insurance handling for patients and institutes

The handling of insurance both by patients and by medical institutes can be a frustrating process. Waiting on payments from insurance providers and keeping track of insurance claims usually involves a lot of paperwork and many hours of calls.

Workflow management in healthcare changes the dynamic between claims and insurance providers. A hospital is a place where many worlds collide. Different professions all come together to take care of and serve the patient. Therefore, a digital system that integrates all these systems and makes daily life run more smoothly can drastically impact the lives of both patients and doctors.

BPM goes beyond borders. It makes it possible to keep everyone from business administration professionals to doctors on the same page.

When it comes to insurance claims, BPM makes it possible to submit all claims digitally, without paperwork, and process payments faster. No long email chains or middle-man conversations are needed, yet every box is ticked and accuracy can be assured.

4. Go beyond typical healthcare boundaries

Improving the daily running of a hospital is one thing, but what about all those healthcare services that are beyond the confines of a single institution? Patients often go to multiple healthcare providers, often private, rather than a single institution.

BPM isn’t confined to working within one ecosystem, but can actually span multiple businesses. For many platforms, managing processes in this way can be incredibly complex but with FireStart, you’re able to integrate processes truly end-to-end even with external companies.

Workflow management in healthcare can go beyond different divisions by facilitating different types of treatment.

Here are just a few different examples:

  • Holistic services like thermal baths and massage. These organizations can receive patient lists from social insurance firms to process claims faster.

  • Day clinics and home personnel. Clinics that a patient might check into and leave the same day can receive patient information ahead of time.

  • Home doctors and private specialists. Process documentation helps all medical professionals remain compliant with certifications; retain patient trust and keep up to date more easily with paperwork.

See how BPM can benefit your business