By Kathy Lozano, RN, Vice President of Operations at West Corporation
Have you ever tried to give cough syrup to a toddler? What should be a simple process turns into a sticky wrestling match that almost always ends in tears. Kids simply don’t like to take their medicine.
As it turns out, most adults don’t either.
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By Sean L. McCarthy
The next time you go in for your check-up, look at your doctor’s office, and see some of the little changes that have sprouted up in the past few years. Free wi-fi for moms, dads, and busy students. Nurses may be toting around tablets instead of clipboards. And once you get your prescription, you can fill it in the same building… and get a skinny, 20-ounce latte with a double shot of espresso while you’re waiting for your medication to get filled.
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By Colin Roberts
High-risk patients—those with chronic conditions, for example—are the primary drivers of cost in healthcare today, due to the level of coordination and number of personal interactions required to successfully manage their health and treatment.
As providers seek opportunities to bend the healthcare cost curve in a more favorable direction, they might wish to pay closer attention to the “care curve” and whether they should really handle every patient, regardless of health status or requirements, exactly the same. I think what they see may surprise them.
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By Doug Thompson, Director of Product Management and Development, West Interactive
The customer service formula of yesteryear fades further into obscurity every day. Wait for a customer to become agitated, take their call, and then play damage-control. This didn’t jibe with customers even when landlines were the norm, and it’s simply unacceptable now — especially while Joe Schmo compares his interaction with an electric company to Zappos’ swiftness earlier in the week.
We get it: In an industry where unforgiving circumstances dictate all, creating a consistently rewarding customer experience can feel a lot like bailing water out of a sinking ship. Read More >
We are proud to announce that four SchoolMessenger products have recently been recognized by the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) for the 2016 CODiE Awards. A staple within the software and information industries for over 30 years, SIIA has a history of identifying quality customer solutions.
These four West solutions have been recognized and are in the running to win the number one spot in the award categories listed below them: Read More >
The imperative to meet customers’ ever-increasing demand for speed, convenience and personalization (with complete accuracy) can make data security and compliance a major concern. This is especially true when dealing with highly sensitive material, like protected health information (PHI) in the Healthcare industry.
Sensitive information calls for a sensitive touch. Having the right people on your side makes all the difference.
The Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) has created the Business Associate Council (BA Council) to ensure continual collaboration among healthcare associates and to provide a much needed forum for organizations seeking to stay ahead of security risks. This council will enable organizations to agree on an appropriate set of requirements to achieve greater compliance efficiencies and reduce overall costs to business associates. Read More >
By Brian Cooper, Patient Engagement Strategist, West Healthcare
Lexus is the most dependable car brand on the market today, according to J.D. Power & Associates. It has ranked the highest in vehicle dependability for five consecutive years.
What does this have to do with healthcare? A lot, when you consider the changing landscape of our healthcare industry.
We are entering a world where consumers’ experience with the care they receive matters more than ever before—and where ratings like those by J.D. Powers could soon become a reality for health systems across the United States. We are entering a world where consumers expect the same level of service and quality that they receive in other industries. We are entering a world where consumers are beginning to ask themselves: “Why should I buy healthcare from you as opposed to your competitor down the street?”
Healthcare organizations are competing ever more fiercely to gain and retain patients’ business—and first impressions are critical. That’s why the patient’s experience when reaching out to your healthcare organization seeking to do business with you is so important. That’s why a modernized access center (a centralized scheduling or contact center) is critical both for differentiating your organization and for preventing leakage. Read More >
By Fonda Narke, Director of Product Integration, West Corporation Healthcare Practice
Texting is inarguably the preferred mode of communication for many consumers (see my previous blog on how consumers have grown to rely on texting).
So why are many healthcare organizations still hesitant to text their patients? They are rightly careful about complying with regulatory requirements for patient consent and privacy. In this blog, I’ll explain how organizations can implement an effective texting strategy that aligns 100 percent with regulations.
Addressing the Compliance Side of Texting
The two primary regulations organizations must consider when building a texting strategy are:
- The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) – TCPA requires organizations in any industry—not just healthcare—to obtain consent to contact a consumer on a cellular phone device. The law protects consumers from the text-messaging version of spam (especially in the days when consumers had to pay for each text they received).
- HIPAA – We in healthcare are, of course, very familiar with HIPAA, so I won’t describe it in any detail here. The law dictates that a patient’s protected health information (PHI) can only be transmitted to healthcare consumers in a secure manner. Texting does not constitute a secure channel for sharing PHI.
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West is a proud recipient of Frost & Sullivan’s 2015 North American Product Leadership Award in the Contact Center Outsourcing Industry. In the wake of customers’ ever-increasing demand for self-service, mobility and an overall-outstanding customer experience, we are privileged to help brands deliver leading communication technology and winning engagement strategies.
Frost & Sullivan recognized West for innovative multi-channel notifications/alert solutions, clear commitment to building lasting partnerships, and accelerated client growth over the past two years. View the press release here.
They graded West’s overall performance based on a wide variety of criteria such as reliability, performance, design and positioning. West scored an overall rating of 9.00, with the closest competitor trailing at 7.75. Read More >
By Fonda Narke
Text messaging isn’t just for the under-65 crowd anymore. Baby boomers (soon to become the Medicare population) are text-messaging fanatics. And older Americans already on Medicare are embracing cell phones at an increasing rate. In fact, Deloitte predicts that people 55 and over will be the fastest growing segment of smart phone adoption.
The End of the “Patient” Patient
Now, consider the fact that the healthcare industry is facing change — lots of it. One of the most notable changes is that healthcare is transitioning to a consumer-driven industry. The days of the “patient” patient—the patient who sits patiently for an hour in the waiting room — are in the past.
Healthcare consumers want the same conveniences other industries offer them. They can get their banking done at their convenience at an ATM. They can sign up for text message alerts when their credit card company receives charges on their account. They can contact nearly all major service providers using their channel of choice (whether it’s a call, text, chat or email).
The services available to consumers from other industries put pressure on healthcare organizations to up their game — and text messaging is an important strategy for doing that.
The time is right for healthcare organizations to embrace consumerism and to implement text-messaging strategies. This will benefit the industry in many ways: Read More >