Communication is paramount to healthcare, something that Dr. Andrew Barbash, Neurologist at SOC Telemed, recognized from day one. Recently at TigerSummit 2020, Dr. Barbash spoke about Expanding Beyond the Four Walls: Improving Care Through Communication.
Dr. Barbash currently works with on-call healthcare specialists as a full-time clinical teleneurologist. Teleneurology, a branch of telemedicine, offers remote consultations for neurological problems via text, video, or voice communication. It encompasses teleconsultations, teleconferencing, and may be initiated by a doctor or a patient. For teleneurology, texting and video are priorities.
“Everything we do to enhance the ability to effectively communicate a message always has a huge payoff,” says Dr. Barbash.
The absence of reliable communication introduces healthcare inefficiencies and issues, forcing care teams to create time-consuming, costly, and ineffective workarounds to solve them.
However, like a bandaid on an open wound, pain points persist.
For over a decade, Dr. Barbash has recognized that telehealth is the future of care, and not just for neurology or stroke programs. Managing data, guidelines, and communication, or even simply being able to chat with the nurse practitioner on duty, demonstrates the need for better continuity of care through technology.
In addition to communication and texting, workflows and collaborating beyond the four walls of the hospital mean reaching physicians in other facilities, especially through direct communication and forums.
Following Dr. Barbash’s fireside chat, we’ve laid out methods for resolving communication issues and promoting practical technology as a standard. Outlined are the initial concepts behind improving care delivery for both your direct team as well as remote clinicians and experts.
Clinical work in an outpatient setting during COVID-19 has proven to be particularly stressful for care teams. To effectively deliver virtual care for numerous hospitals, using asynchronous communication is critical, especially for providing treatment safely and remotely.
Going beyond the physical limitations of a brick-and-mortar hospital means better care and problem-solving. Through asynchronous communication, sending a secure text while reviewing a CAT scan, for example, lets care teams stay ahead of the game with parallel processing. An on-call specialist can also care for patients and collaborate with teams in any facility.
To quickly get a sense of what’s going on and what’s needed, TigerConnect bridges the gap between remote experts and internal clinicians. Reducing long-distance collaboration challenges saves time and mental strain while offering immediate results.
Ultimately, clinicians can pursue improved continuity of care in a completely new way. Instead of long wait times, patient referrals, or facility transfers, an MRI scan can be messaged the same day, accompanied by a photo of lab results. Use cases like these lead to this idea of continuous interaction that redefines telemedicine.
According to Dr. Barbash, it’s important to accept the fact that our knowledge is limited. Other specialists can offer a new level of expertise that each of us can benefit from. Implementing TigerConnect forums for case discussions with field experts allows care teams to capitalize on the knowledge of those outside their own organization.
Immediately invite experts to further discuss issues, allowing you to connect with the right expert any time for convenient consults. In addition, leveraging instant back-and-forth messaging, alerts, and notifications also gets us closer to more meaningful, personalized collaboration.
Looking into the future, we are finding that operational activity — the ways people communicate, the frequency, and the methods — could impact healthcare and yield new medical knowledge.
If you’re interested in hearing more from Dr. Andrew Barbash, check out his episode of The Connected Care Team podcast below. To learn more about how TigerConnect improves care team communication and collaboration, reach out to us at any time with questions or to request a demo.
The Connected Care Team Podcast
Resolving Communication Inefficiencies in Care Delivery