The healthcare industry has been focused on achieving three main goals. These are known as the Triple Aim of Healthcare and consist of improving patient health outcomes, enhancing the quality of care, and reducing medical costs. There are a variety of technological solutions that have been pushed toward addressing the Triple Aim. From mobile health apps and wearable devices to telemedicine services and BYOD strategies, the medical field is attempting to reform care in various technology-based ways.
However, Forbes reports that the healthcare field may be missing a vital ingredient in its attempt to revolutionize patient care. This missing ingredient is the human element. A survey completed by Xerox from Harris Interactive found that a mere 26 percent of adult survey takers want electronic patient records to exist and 40 percent actually believe EHRs deliver improved and more efficient healthcare services. This shows that technology is only a small piece of the puzzle of reforming our healthcare system.
The majority of survey takers – 85 percent – stated that they have privacy and security concerns with the use of EHR technology. These may be understandable concerns since there are a multitude of hospital data breaches taking place across the country on a regular basis due to the influx of new data storage systems and EHR platforms.
Essentially, the human element must be considered in healthcare reform. BYOD strategies and mobile devices won’t solve the issues of nurses showing carelessness by forgetting to bring water to a patient or not checking a patient’s temperature on a regular basis if they’ve been having fevers. A new web design won’t solve the many patient care issues taking place in hospitals around the nation.
“For each of us there is a moment of discovery. In the flash of a synapse we learn that life is elemental. This knowledge changes everything. We see all things connected. The element not listed on the chart – is the missing element – the human element. And when we add it to the equation – the chemistry changes. Every reaction is different. The human element is the element of change. Nothing is more fundamental. Nothing more elemental,” Forbes reported.
By investing in the human element when reforming healthcare, medical professionals and the patient community can learn about each other’s histories and grow to connect in ways that would truly lead to better and more compassionate care.
Nonetheless, technology does play a role in making medical care more simplified, more accurate, and more efficient overall for both patients and healthcare providers. BYOD strategies, for instance, could lead to lower costs for hospitals and other businesses or corporations, according to Forbes.
Mobile devices are approximately 10 percent of a company’s spending, which means implementing BYOD strategies could save a business or healthcare organization one-tenth of their overall spending. However, companies will need to consider the costs associated with risk management for security and privacy concerns related to BYOD strategies and the use of mobile devices within an organization.
“Add it all up and a BYOD policy may cost a company a lot more money than it saves. In fact, the big winners in the BYOD trend are not companies but carriers,” Forbes reported. “Employees are also winners because they get to set technology standards without regard for what’s best for the corporation. The losers? Those who support technology policies and who manage risk and compliance. Yet, the BYOD trend isn’t going away: Gartner projects that by 2018, 70 percent of employees will conduct their work on smart devices.”
As more healthcare organizations and hospitals adopt BYOD strategies, mobile devices, remote monitoring, and telemedicine services, it is still critical for the medical industry as a whole to address the human element in healthcare reform.