INTRO Technology has the potential to vastly improve healthcare experiences and your operations. But it can be difficult to identify, test, and adopt new technology. Here’s how to successfully pilot new technology solutions in your organization.
CALLOUT The Healthcare Safety Net is the collection of hospitals and clinics who provide care for Medicaid, uninsured, and other vulnerable people. Resources are scarce so improving care and operations with effective technology can help make time and resources go farther.
POINT Where should I look to apply new technology? Target areas that are aligned with your organization’s strategy. Is your organization focused on increasing access? Improving quality of care? Reducing no-shows? Then choose one of those.
POINT Successful projects have support from senior leadership. Prepare a simple business case for the project and how it will create value for the organization.
Aspects of support from leadership:
Permission and encouragement in spite of uncertainty
Help connect the project across departments
Help overcome organizational challenges from policies, legal, IT
CALLOUT How can technology help?
Improve patient experience
Improve provider/staff experience
Eliminate manual or redundant work
Decrease administrative tasks for high cost providers
Reduce no-show rate
Address social determinants of health
POINT Create a map of the workflow of the process the technology will affect.
See it from each and every stakeholder’s viewpoint. Discuss potential impacts in detail with staff to anticipate benefits and challenges.
POINT Before pursuing a new technology, “act out” with the staff how the workflow would be with the new solution. Have the technology vendor participate and confirm the behavioral and workflow impact.
POINT To assess the impact of the new technology, select a few simple measures that should improve. Identify the sources of data for these measures and establish a way to collect it before, during, and after your pilot test.
CALLOUT Often, it is too difficult to immediately integrate with your IT infrastructure. So you’ll run a test of a new technology outside of your existing IT infrastructure in what is called a “walled garden.”
What is the threshold of success?
POINT Keep the core team small, but communicate widely. Make IT and legal part of the team early! Understand legal’s ability to contract with vendors. Simplify contracting and IT challenges by adjusting how the pilot is tested.
POINT Piloting new solutions is often not a priority across the organization. Establish weekly or bi-weekly check-ins to keep things moving. Small consistent progress is better than large stressful pushes.
POINT Don’t try to pilot the solution in the real workflow. Create a “walled garden“ to keep the pilot test from impacting critical health or business data/process.