Doctors Day is March 30, and at symplr we’re pausing to thank doctors in general practice and in all specialties, in every healthcare organization: Thank you for your ongoing service to all of us, as patients!
As we take stock of how difficult the past few years have been on physicians and all clinicians, it’s important to recognize their dedication and sacrifices. Many continue to work long hours with ever-increasing patient loads, as more of their colleagues retire or leave the profession. But just as importantly, it’s essential to discuss positive trends—like the growing movement to improve healthcare operations—that bolster our physicians, especially where technology is involved.
One initiative exploring the uses of technology and software to support doctors is the recent inaugural Healthcare Operations Summit, a first-of-its-kind gathering of U.S. healthcare leaders committed to mapping and assessing healthcare operations, and setting a blueprint for its future. The takeaway is straightforward yet extraordinary: Make meaningful improvements in healthcare operations, to ultimately give doctors and all caregivers time back to provide excellent patient care.
Here are 5 simple but powerful ways to thank a doctor on Doctor's Day
In years past, health systems, practices, and patients might have commemorated Doctor’s Day with a breakfast or lunch, sent cards, or shared some other small gift. But we’ve got a different take on how you can recognize physicians in your healthcare organization or community. Consider:
- Recording and sharing a fun video of colleagues thanking your physicians
- Sending an appreciation note, song, or other thanks to your favorite physician on LinkedIn or other social media
- Boosting your favorite physician’s profile on one of the many popular physician review sites (Yelp, Vitals, Google My Business, Healthgrades, ZocDoc, RateMDs, Doctor.com, etc.)
- Giving blood or platelets at a local drive or blood bank, such as the Red Cross
- Learning about issues affecting the practice of medicine today, for example:
- Learn how the pandemic changed patient experience
- Better understand social determinants of health
- Read about healthcare quality metrics affecting your doctor’s reimbursement
- Explore what your physician must navigate in the new world of value-based payment and risk
Want to know more about how healthcare operations issues affect doctors? Read on!
Your role in how your favorite physician is rated and rewarded
When it comes to healthcare, we all want quality over quantity. Value-based healthcare models are replacing traditional fee-for-services models that encourage more tests, more procedures, and more follow up. The goal of value-based care is to deliver higher-quality care. Further, payers now reimburse physicians for clinical outcomes tied to cost containment. To succeed in the transition, healthcare organizations and their physicians must help each other to create strategies to track quality metrics and improve patient outcomes.
A part of outcomes measurement is assessing patients’ experiences and perceptions of their care. Often, this is accomplished by administering patient satisfaction surveys, including the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey that measures 64 markers of patient satisfaction ranging from care quality to care facility cleanliness. HCAHPS scores provide important information about how hospitals can improve patient care and services.
The bottom line is that your voice in your own care carries more weight than it ever has in how physicians are paid and rewarded, and that influence is only expected to increase.
How COVID-19 changed your experience with your doctor
A survey of 1,000 patients found that 59% of patients say they’ve interacted differently with their providers post-pandemic, with 38% using telehealth in the past 18 months and 51% of millennials (aged 19-39) ranking telehealth in their top three methods of preferred care.
Another survey of nearly 1,200 American healthcare consumers indicated that patient expectations, particularly regarding communication, have changed in the last 2-3 years:
- 50% of survey respondents have higher expectations for their physician since COVID-19
- 58% now expect digital appointment scheduling, proactive communication (57%), and virtual appointments (54%)
Healthcare organizations and physicians who communicate with patients frequently via digital channels have an advantage over those who don’t:
- 58% of patients who have more confidence in their doctor following the pandemic cite frequent communication (educating them on how to prevent COVID-19 infection) as a main reason for their increased confidence
- 47% stated that providers’ use of digital tools such as text and email to communicate about appointments and check-in boosted their confidence
Explore healthcare operations and the software and technology that will increasingly play a role in better operations and better outcomes.