4 Ways COVID-19 prompted a digital transformation

August 22, 2022
Categories: Home health, Hospice, Palliative care
Reading Time: 2 minutes

While a digital transformation in post-acute care was well underway before the onset of COVID-19, the evolution of technology was accelerated during the pandemic to help ensure the safety of staff and those they serve.

Providers that embraced digital tools were able to continue operations under a new normal and are now ahead of the curve when it comes to meeting expectations amid rising demands for care in the home and the consumer-focused technology that allows it to happen. Patients and their family caregivers got a taste of the real-time communication that was required to operate during COVID-19 and they expect that level of consumerism to continue to evolve.

In what ways did the COVID-19 pandemic serve as the catalyst for this technology evolution? Here are four ways the pandemic has driven digital transformation for post-acute care delivered in the home:

Telehealth and remote patient monitoring (RPM)

At the onset of the pandemic, telehealth and RPM were necessary to continue care in the home while safely distancing. These technologies created not only a new convenience in healthcare but also a newfound way to strengthen relationships with patients and provide higher-quality care.

With patient-centric tools like these, patients and their families are empowered with real-time access to their health data. They no longer must rely on clinician visits to ask questions. Instead, clinician-patient relationships continue beyond the home through remote care and virtual engagement.

Patient and family engagement

While finding connection during the pandemic was a challenge, post-acute providers discovered that mobile communication technologies actually deepened connections with patients and their family caregivers. Quick responses from clinicians and real-time access to care teams gave patients control over their care—which could also significantly impact CAHPS scores.

Value for clinical teams

New technology can cause anxiety among clinicians, who often have too much on their plate as it is. With the pandemic creating a need for more tech, digital tools that demonstrate value, make jobs easier, and enhance the quality of care are more easily adopted by clinicians in the field.

The right technology and tools allow for mobile communication to the care team and not just one single clinician, which means clinicians no longer must give patients and families their personal phone numbers—a huge selling point for staff.

Interoperability

During the pandemic and beyond, manual workflows and paper-based processes have been replaced with real-time electronic data exchange and collaboration tools that integrate directly with an organization’s EHR. The result is a new era of care delivery where patients, their care teams, and referral partners are always connected, clinical staff are more easily recruited and retained, and patients are more deeply engaged.

“Do we need another cellphone? Do we need another electric car? Do we need another cloud-connected refrigerator? Or do we need a device that gives somebody the gift of breath, stops suffocation, keeps them out of the hospital, and saves money for broken health care systems worldwide?” –Michael Farrell, CEO, ResMed

While it’s clear the demand for care in the home was accelerated by COVID-19, there are other reasons that contributed to this demand. Patients prefer the comfort of their homes, it’s safe and low cost, and technology has made it more accessible.

MatrixCare has been at the forefront of innovating new ways for digital tools to simplify communication, collaboration, and integration—all in real time to create a better experience for everyone within the care journey.

Ready to learn about MatrixCare’s innovative approach to helping your organization navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond?

Schedule a demo today.


Nick Knowlton
Nick Knowlton

Nick Knowlton is the Vice President of Strategic Initiatives for ResMed, parent company of Brightree and MatrixCare. He leads the company’s interoperability initiatives, amongst other areas. Nick brings more than 20 years of business experience across sales, marketing, product and strategy roles for technology and health information technology businesses. Prior to joining the ResMed family of brands, Nick ran strategic initiatives for Greenway Health, a market leader in the physician practice EHR space. Nick is extremely active in the post-acute industry -- he is the chair of the board of directors of CommonWell Health Alliance and is on the board of HCTAA and PDHCA, which are affiliates of NAHC. Nick has a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Biochemistry from the University of Notre Dame.


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