How To Increase Patient Experience In The ED: Improving Case Management

  • Healthcare Management
  • case management - emergency department
  • June 4, 2021

Read Time: 8 minutes Patient experience in the emergency room is critical to a hospital’s success. Improving case management can increase patient satisfaction.

Case Management Improves ED Performance

The ED or emergency department is a critical part of the hospital. Studies estimate, on average, over 130 million Americans visit the ED yearly. Whether or not the visit is warranted, the success of the hospital hinges on patient experience. Patients are already stressed with ailments and expect quick treatment. More importantly, patients need the right treatment, which is only possible through efficient case management.

ViralMD Connect How To Increase Patient Experience In The ED: Improving Case Management

What is case management?

Upon entry to the ED, staff assesses, treats, and discharges patients promptly. The hospital records each patient as a case. Each case needs one or more persons to oversee the process. The case manager collects information, declares a course of action, and guides the patient accordingly. Case managers also follow up on treatment and even do so after discharge. Hospitals have limited resources, including beds, doctors, and nurses. Poor case management can impact almost every aspect of the hospital’s performance. More importantly, poor case management creates a poor patient experience.

Leveraging technology to improve case management

Imagine a crowded emergency department. Some patients can wait for hours, become stressed, and possibly leave without being seen. This is often down to a lack of case managers and is common in rural areas. By leveraging remote case management, hospitals can acquire virtual case managers. The process uses technology like video or virtual chats to interact with patients remotely, speeding up the process. Remote case managers can even help cover 24-hour shifts. This means patients receive high-quality service around the clock.

Consider adding hospitalists

Patients will feel more at ease if there is expert support at every stage. Hospitalists can fill that role and more. Hospitalists are doctors who specialize in the care of hospitalized patients. These doctors manage the patient process, connect with the patient’s family, primary doctor, and patient. Hospitalists can point patients to the right care from the ED. This improves patient flow, quality of care, and reduces the length of stay.

Increase the support with APPs

Hiring hospitalists are an effective strategy. But like most doctors, hospitalists are in high demand and limited supply. Advanced practice providers (APPs) can also support hospitals. These are medical providers who can perform many of the same duties that doctors can. These persons usually hold Master’s degrees and include nurse practitioners, midwives, and physician assistants. APPs perform advanced tasks, including writing prescriptions, performing procedures, and conducting exams. Patients will feel comfortable knowing an APP helps in the emergency room.

Track performance and patient feedback

To really improve performance, hospitals must have data on current performance. Hospitals can achieve this in two ways. First, each hospital must have clear measurements related to case management and patient experience. This includes patient throughput, readmissions, wait times, and LWBS. Secondly, gather patient feedback from surveys like HCAHPS. Patients can tell hospitals exactly what needs to be fixed.

The key to amazing patient experience

Hospitals need a steady flow of patients to thrive. Furthermore, these patients must feel confident in the level of service. Improving case management is an effective way of achieving better results. Through technology and having the right persons in the right places, hospitals can have better outcomes.

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