Medline's New Patient Experience & Innovation Institute Is Open
Many medical brands are moving their focus from simple clinical outcomes and increasing their emphasis on patient experience. While clinical outcomes are obviously the raison d'etre for all healthcare providers, it is becoming increasingly important that patients are as happy and comfortable as possible and that treatment schedules are as non-intrusive and convenient as they can be.
The drive for this change has come from the retail industry, where brands have been innovating new ways to add additional experiences to the shopping process. Whether this takes the form of technology-driven experiences designed to add fun and functionality to retail shopping or improved customer service policies, the need for superior customer experience has become a key brand differentiator.
Now, the healthcare industry has adopted the idea of experience as a driver for success, and Medline has opened a Patient Experience and Innovation Institute dedicated to innovating in this area.
Announced in April 2019, the Medline Patient Experience and Innovation Institute is designed to provide support and assistance to hospitals and other healthcare organizations who want to find new ways of improving patient experience and to set the concept as an organizational priority. Savvy brands realize that patient experience needs to run through all their operational objectives and can help them deliver a meaningful bottom-line impact, better clinical outcomes, and long-term revenue improvements.
"Years of working closely with Medline customers taught us that consistent high performance in patient satisfaction is a source of frustration for many health systems," said Chief Nursing Officer for Medline, Martie Moore. "The new Patient Experience and Innovation Institute responds to this need by guiding hospital leaders to enhance their ability to sustain exceptional care experiences."
The team operating the Medline Patient Experience and Innovation Institute is dedicated to working with engaged healthcare providers to immerse their corporate cultures in patient experience. Workshops running over two or three days are designed to give employees at the management and executive level the tools and insights they need to effectively engage with the staff working under them and to improve their own performance as well.
Safety is a huge focus of these workshops and improving policies in this area can be used as a foundation for exceptional patient experience.
The historical opaqueness of hospitals' data around performance has also been addressed, with the Medline Patient Experience and Innovation Institute focusing on finding ways to make this information more accessible to patients. This will improve confidence in those seeking treatment at healthcare organizations and can be aligned with patient satisfaction strategies for more in-depth insights.
"Hospitals and health systems are spending more time and resources than ever before searching for reliable paths to improve patient satisfaction," said Medline in a press release. "The overall pursuit of patient satisfaction can be daunting. There are so many different aspects of an inpatient or outpatient experience that influence the patient's ultimate satisfaction. Patient satisfaction is different for every patient, so exceeding expectations that are all over the board is a difficult task indeed."
Improving patient experience is a moment-to-moment endeavor. Every patient is an individual. Trying to create a one-size-fits-all approach is often fruitless. A far more effective approach, and the one favored by the Medline Patient Experience and Innovation Institute, is to focus on key moments, customized to individual patients.
To achieve this, the Medline Patient Experience and Innovation Institute aims to transform individual employees into "Chief Moment Officers" and seeks to hammer home the impact each staff member can exercise over the experience patients have with their organization. By driving staff to take ownership of their responsibilities regarding patient experience - backed up by input, feedback, and data-driven insights - the Institute expects improved levels of experience-focused care to flourish.
"This preparation of staff needs to begin as part of new employee orientation and be reinforced continually," continued Medline's press release. "The value of having an entire workforce of Chief Moment Officers, empowered to look for stated and unstated patient needs, and prepared to anticipate and respond to exceed patient expectations, is priceless. The positive impact will be felt not only by patients but also by staff members who will connect to the organization more strongly by being included, trained and knowing that their contributions are valued."
As time goes on, the focus on patient experience is only going to be more deeply felt among healthcare providers, and medical brands which can incorporate the concept successfully into their operations will be the ones most likely to succeed. With dedicated initiatives such as Medline's Patient Experience and Innovation Institute helping in this regard, we are likely to see more exciting experiential innovations in this area in the future.
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