Every doctor treats me. Every hospital got some infra. Every scan speaks a story. It does not matter what all you may do. How you do it matters. It matters a lot.
- If an appointment runs late beyond 15 mins, you better let me know.
- Of course, we would. The Hospital has sophisticated tools to schedule appointments, monitor waiting time and automatically intimate potential delays. Being punctual is no more just a cherished organizational value, but a process objective delivered consistently across all care areas.
- Action Taken: The software allows the doctor to send bulk delay notifications, if necessary. Any significant delay is monitored across hospital dashboards.
- The doctor said discharge, why am I still here?
- The Eight Hour discharges are a thing of past. For the patients with online payment wallets, just walk past with your discharge summary after signing an authorization. We send you the bill on email with an option to dispute a charge within 24 hours, if needed. No need to wait for coordination, insurance approvals and so on, when you would rather like to be taking the patient home.
- Action Taken: The hospital allows Green Channel discharge with patients with electronic wallet authorizations.
- What is your discharge Turnaround Time target? What is the sanctity of the same?
- The Hospital has specifically targeted the discharge process to ensure a Green channel discharge with preparations starting a day in advance. Specifically, the hospital has an IT enabled process for discharge advise, with hospital wide coordination for documentation, payments, insurance approvals etc. The typical discharge Turnaround Time shall be only ten minutes, required to pay the bill in the comfort of your room. A formal IT based audit tracks delays and bottlenecks, if any.
- Action Taken: All Planned Discharges are initiated a day in advance. All process elements are continuously tracked on individual turnaround time.
- Honour your Estimates.
- The Hospital has built extensive billing scenarios to generate a rigorous estimation process. The hospital rate lists are reviewed quarterly and are centrally managed. All estimates, rates lists, corporate contracts, doctor/ surgical charges – high or low – are all system generated and do not have any human intervention.
90% of the surgeries are covered as all-inclusive packages while the remaining involves specific conditions. The intent is to generate an estimate built solely on the quantities decided by the doctors with no rate variations. Any unexplained variation of actual bill from the estimate is analysed and monitored very closely.
- Action Taken: All rate lists are system generated. Any unexplained deviation from estimate is escalated to the CFO level with adequate response to the patient.
- A Package is not a Package if it is not all-inclusive.
- Absolutely. We believe the word Package is meant to give certain predictability to the patient rather than juggling with fine prints. A Package in the Hospital realistically covers all foreseen medical charges, including surgeon fees, pharmacy charges, cross referrals, investigations etc. Most standard surgeries have been done repeatedly, leaving strong statistical evidence on estimated cost line items. Further, the packages are extended to cover common deviations for pre-existing diabetes, renal, cardiac, pregnancy conditions. Any charges over and above the package are closely reviewed and incorporated in subsequent packages as needed.
- Action Taken: All packages are defined to be all-inclusive including common pre-existing disease conditions, except for inadmissible non-medical charges.
- A half-day leave for a five minute consultation. Seriously?
- Most of the follow up visits, report review, quick clarifications etc. do not warrant a more than five minute consultation. We are leveraging mobile consultation to expand the scope of consultation beyond the face-to-face conventional doctor consultation, as and where feasible. In addition to the usual OPD consultation, all your doctors allow video consultations on pre-defined appointments, as you would do otherwise for a normal doctor consultation. Further, the hospital doctors are available on short notice for emergency consultations on a formal video/ audio consultation, rather than making ad hoc phone calls to busy doctors.
- Action Taken: All doctors give daily slots for tele/ video consultations through the mobile apps, in addition to emergency consultations as needed.
- I respect your time. You respect mine.
- The hospital has sophisticated scheduling and monitoring tools to ensure predictable care with active information in case of unavoidable delays. A lab test bill is tagged with the expected reporting time. The pharmacy is planned to have zero queue. The IP billing is done at the patient room with pre-defined turnaround time. A doctor appointment running late is intimated through sms. A Signature Health Check is scheduled in a manner to ensure zero queues in each of the investigation points.
- Action Taken: Multiple process and technology interventions are done at different care points to ensure predictable care as much as possible.
- The hospital should do what is written. The hospital should write what it does.
- The hospital has unique in designing detailed hospital process manuals, policies, procedures, rights and responsibilities and have put them in public domain. The hospital borrows closely from its IT legacy and has deployed a cloud based IT tool to centrally host process manuals, formats, checklists and FAQs – such that the entire team from doctors to nurses and from managers to front office staff is consistent in answering and deploying process questions.
- Action Taken: A cloud based tool serves a central repository of all process related documents including checklists, forms, SOPs and FAQs, ensuring consistent responses across organization
- I still have questions. Can I talk to some other doctor?
- Healthcare brings its own subjectivity in treatment protocols. We understand and encourage cross-consultations to review and discuss our care plans.
- Shed off the bureaucracy. Who is my relationship manager?
- The Hospital allocates a dedicated executive contact person to each in-patient across executive wards (except ICUs and economy wards) all through the in-patient stay. The contact person is responsible as a single point of contact for coordinating with nursing, admitting doctors, pharmacy, labs, billing and insurance desk for all non-clinical patient care. The Dedicated executives are available round the clock with a sole responsibility to serve as a single window to the hospital during the in-patient stay.
- Action Taken: Dedicated contact person to serve as a single contact point for all non-clinical activities.
- Queues are for railway reservations. No they aren’t there either. Why here?
- Fair point. The hospital has zero queues in billing, in registration, in pharmacy, in admission and not in discharge. Using the mobility solutions to the fullest, all registration, billing, admission activities are done sitting next to the patient in the waiting area than at a formal reception counter. Most of the admission and discharge formalities including deposits, payments, documentation etc. are done right in the patient room than queuing up in long winding patient counters. Even patient service areas like pharmacy, lab, radiology, health check-up, operate on sophisticated scheduling algorithms to minimize waiting time, if any.
- Action Taken: Zero Reception work flows built around point of care mobility systems to minimize queues.
- One Hospital. One Bill. One Payment. Preferably, Online Payment
- Absolutely must. Hospital allows for a single running bill for all Outpatient procedures/ investigations/ consultations etc. all through the day, so far there is enough deposit in the Patient account. Instead of queuing up for each service billing, the patient can ‘top up’ the account, undertake multiple hospital services and request a consolidated single bill for the entire day. More so, the payment can be collected through all common modes including online gateways and mobile payment wallets.
- Action Taken: Hospital wide billing integration with support for patient wallet to enable cashless transactions.
- Can you mail me my bill? And my lab reports? Can I do away with the pesky printouts?
- The email is default medium of communication in the Hospital. The conventional printouts are significantly discouraged, unless specifically asked for. All bills, receipts, lab reports etc. are emailed proactively to the registered email account. More so, all the patient documents are available online through the patient portal on the website and on the mobile app perpetually. It allows the patient to manage their health records centrally, append external records and retrieve data as needed at a later stage.
- Action Taken: All documentation are electronic except when a printout is explicitly asked for.
- Help me to help you.
- The entire Hospital workflow is built around enabling patient access to care by providing maximum self-service options where possible. Through the mobile app or the hospital website account, a patient can register, take an appointment, generate an electronic bill, make electronic payments, track past documents, view inpatient records, set reminders for services and so on. The self-service portal allows for strong patient empowerment, which in turn reduces the patient’s dependence on hospital staff for simple services like appointments and consultation billing.
- Action Taken: Strong technology environment to allow patient self-services –thereby reducing the dependence on hospital staff for simple transactions.