These were some of the issues and points to consider when we started a telemedicine project with Paediatric Cardiothoracic in India :
1. Credibility of the reporting Consultant/service provider.
2. Reliability of transmission of data, to and from a Consultant to the hospital – in terms of technology, internet access/speed etc
3. Country Regulations – recognition of the service provider/Consultant in Malaysia/foreign country
4. PDPA concerns
5. Hospitals’ legal liability of wrong diagnosis or error in reports.
We have an in house Clinical Psychologist that staff are encouraged to consult with when in emotional turmoil or just need someone to talk to. Heads of Departments are also encouraged to look out for staff who may be struggling with “bouncing back” and get the care to come to them rather than expecting them to look for help. The subsidized cost involved helps as well.
For employees who are known to have suffered a loss or any traumatic experience, HR plays a big role in being the people to follow up with the relevant managers on how the staff is performing once back to work and to be alerted when there is a need for intervention or to offer help. HR remains a neutral party, which is an important factor in sensitive matters like this.
I was going to start with “these things take time” but defaulted!
A lot of people tend to spend a lot of the hospital’s Marketing budget on large scale generalized Advertising and Media campaigns etc. but it could be a total waste of an investment if you are reaching out to the wrong people. Know your audience and then target your marketing and branding strategies to suit these communities. We are a relatively new 300 bed tertiary hospital and after a market survey conducted recently, we realized that based on our location, there are certain demographics that frequent our centre and we should be focusing our marketing and branding strategies on platforms that reach out to these communities specifically. It definitely resulted in a positive influx in our numbers and revenue quite quickly.
Some suggestions :
Attractive salary and benefit schemes that are in line with industry, but more importantly all employees should have a complete understanding of these.
Instilling a sense of belonging in employees via family programmes, inter divisional activities
Involving employees in company wide decisions where possible for e.g considering feedback from all employees on length of maternity leave, possibility of flexible working hours etc
Boost Job satisfaction by ensuring high productivity (provide training etc.)
Open door policies that ensure employees are heard at all levels.
We have the similar problem in Malaysia too that leaves a lot unpaid and collection is constantly an issue. Ours remains more complicated as we do not have the bundling system. We tend to have to go back and forth replying deferment letters from the payers with justifications from our doctors, and more often than not, payments are denied.
I agree with Sri that it would seem beneficial to ensure bundles are carefully structured with the payer’s involved in the process. However, for a tertiary care hospital, it can be gruelling process.