Leveraging the Find Care Experience to Help Alleviate Workforce Shortages
Fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic, workforce shortages in the healthcare industry continue to be front-page news, with providers and staff alike being asked to do more—much more—with less. Not surprisingly, in a recent Kyruus survey, providers cited staffing shortages that impact them and their staff as one of today’s top clinical and industry challenges.While these findings are unsettling, there’s some comfort in reframing staffing shortages as an opportunity for healthcare organizations and providers to work together on a solution. In fact, aside from the most obvious remedy—adding additional staff—those same providers who identified workforce shortages as a top challenge also offered up a number of suggestions to help alleviate this critical issue, including implementing new technology solutions such as new/different practice management tools, more online scheduling, and expanding virtual care offerings.
Clearly, more providers are open to technology-based solutions than ever before. The pivots they made during the pandemic have changed providers’ thinking—and they are more than ready to adopt new technology and self-service options if it means lightening the load for themselves and for their staff.
Blurring the Lines Between Providers’ Needs and Consumers’ Demands
Ironically, there is overlap in what providers identify as potential solutions to workforce shortages and what consumers want from healthcare organizations in their find care journey. Specifically, consumers want convenience, flexibility, and seamless digital access that includes self-service tools to help them confidently search for, select, and schedule care on their own terms. What they don’t want is rigid care types and heavy reliance on 9-to-5 office staff to confirm a provider’s clinical expertise, verify insurances accepted, or schedule an appointment. That’s music to the ears of overburdened providers and staff.
That's why healthcare organizations should strive to build a holistic Find Care experience that offers consumers the ability to find a variety of care types and options—a PCP who speaks Portuguese, a location that’s close to a subway stop, a virtual care appointment that fits their work schedule—and book that care online, all within a single, streamlined workflow that maximizes convenience—and also automates care access tasks for providers.
Building an Effective Find Care Experience to Benefit Consumers and Providers
Creating a Find Care experience is a four-step process that allows healthcare organizations to take control of their online patient acquisition strategy, build loyalty, and deliver on the convenience and flexibility that consumers demand—but there are important benefits for providers along the way:
- ENGAGE: Meeting Consumers Where They Are
Making providers searchable across your digital properties and third-party channels makes it easy for consumers to find them when searching online for care. It also enables providers to convert demand from multiple channels—a job that is difficult to do on their own.
- SEARCH: Provide a Simple, Powerful Search Experience
Creating a search experience that integrates clinical keyword search and natural language processing capabilities and that surfaces care options (i.e., providers, locations, and services) helps consumers search for care using their own words and phrases. Likewise, when organizations help providers be more searchable by integrating clinical keywords, they are enabling these providers to surface in appropriate searches so they can be included in consumers’ discovery process.
- MATCH: Surface Information that Consumers Value Most
Building rich, differentiating provider profiles ensures more precise patient-provider matching and connects consumers to providers that meet their clinical needs and personal preferences. For providers, better matching means they can avoid scheduling patients who are not clinically appropriate for their practice, saving both time and resources.
- BOOK: Create a One-Stop-Shop for Digital Self-Service
Integrating self-service booking options, simplified scheduling workflows, and virtual care scheduling enables healthcare organizations to convert online demand across a range of care types. This satisfies consumer expectations for a modern, seamless experience and aligns to the top tactics providers say can bring relief to workforce shortages.
Healthcare organizations are instrumental to alleviating providers’ challenges caused by workforce shortages. The Find Care experience provides a helpful framework that can help address some of providers’ top concerns and enable them to reduce the scope and intensity of tasks through automation—all while supporting the convenience consumers demand. The bottom line? When done right, the Find Care experience is a win-win for everybody.
LEARN MORE ABOUT CREATING YOUR FIND CARE EXPERIENCE
Download Your Find Care Experience: Four Key Steps to Converting the Digitally-Empowered Healthcare Consumer to gain new insights into consumer preferences and actionable strategies for creating a holistic Find Care experience—including a self-assessment checklist.