This edition of YOU magazine features several technology initiatives that have the potential to improve how we deliver care and, ultimately, the patient experience in the coming months and years.
Technology has long been a critical part of the healthcare infrastructure, especially in clinical applications. But with today’s explosion of mobile apps, social media and online information, both hardware and software are changing our lives constantly. We connect with friends and relatives on mobile phones, we get much of our news online, we shop on websites and increasingly we judge the quality of our experiences by how mobile-friendly they are.
This explosion of information and connectivity is spreading across HCA as well. While it can present unique challenges in some ways, such as in the area of securing protected information, it also opens exciting possibilities.
Electronic health records are quickly becoming a reality in nearly every patient setting. Caregivers are monitoring patients, recording results and diagnosing illnesses with the help of electronic tools. And everyone is communicating in real time.
We see all of these changes happening around us every day, but sometimes don’t stop to think about how new ways of communicating can be harnessed to help us provide a more seamless and easier-to-navigate setting for patients and caregivers. Storing information which can be easily accessed so patients don’t have to repeatedly fill out forms, real-time entry of patient vital signs at the bed side, tracking a patient’s status so family and friends know what to expect next, providing prospective patients mobile-enabled preregistration information and post-care instructions — all of these are a reality today.
As exciting as these new frontiers are, these examples are only the innovations we are currently beginning to implement. It seems as soon as one new technology is brought to market, there are three even more interesting ones being developed. The rapidity of change in the digital era is astronomical — it’s very exciting and challenges all of us to keep pace.
Amid this sea of change, HCA remains focused on harnessing the best of technological innovations and applying them to improving patient care. The proliferation of technology has made all of us much more connected and much more informed. As we forge ahead with mobile devices in hand, we all stay focused on our goal of improving the patient experience every day.
Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer