Patient Portal: How It’s Organizing the Medical Industry

Patient Portal: How It’s Organizing the Medical Industry

Kanchi Vasavada

July 11th, 2019

Taking your health in your hands is always a good thing. Apart from eating healthy and exercising regularly, the best way to make sure you are fit is to keep constant tabs on your mind and body. This is why wearable technology & fitness bands are rising in popularity right now. These are great tools for monitoring your health, but what about when you need to connect to a medical institution? Wouldn’t it be convenient if your patients could access all their data, schedule appointments on a shared calendar and check their test results? This is where a medical/patient portal comes in.

As a medical institution or hospital, you have the same management or logistical needs as a business. Just like any business, a hospital has elements like customers, suppliers, partners, and employees. The patients are customers, the doctors and admin staff are employees, you have to buy medical equipment from vendors, and blood banks, pathology labs, organ donation bank are partners.

Because the requirements are similar, you can also need a CRM that can manage all of this data. And along with a CRM, having a patient portal will drastically streamline the hospital workflow.

Let’s tell you about the patient portal in brief.

Must-Have Patient Portal Features:

– Medical details

– Test results

– Appointment booking

Let’s look at the patient portal benefits and challenges based on these features:

Medical Records

A customer portal or patient portal can be privately shared space where all patients can check their records. They can see their blood type, height, weight, allergies, and all the basics. Beyond the basics, they can see their prescribed medication, dosage details, and their entire medical history. The institute can keep proper track of regularity of patients’ check-ups, blood pressure history, blood sugar level, and surgery history (if any). It would be a comprehensive compilation of their health details through their entire life.

Test Results

Because your CRM has the data of your patients, doctors, laboratories, etc. you can provide view access of test results to respective patients. For example, if a patient has to have surgery, the doctor needs to monitor their blood details before and after. You can measure blood pressure and blood sugar via blood and urine tests. Therefore, after each check, the pathology lab can upload those results to the CRM. This way the patient, as well as the doctor, can see those, and make sure that they take the right course of action for the patient’s treatment.

Apart from blood tests, the patient portal would have all kinds of test results; CT scans, eye check-up, MRI scans, X Rays, sonographies, etc.

Appointment Booking

An extremely useful feature of any patient portal is that it makes booking appointments extremely simple for both the patient and the doctor. The doctor can put up the available schedule, and accordingly, a patient can request an appointment. The doctor then approves the appointment based on urgency and availability. And once the portal blocks that slot, there will be fewer chances for double booking. For in-house doctor’s check-up, this can be very helpful, especially in cases where your patient needs to consult a visiting doctor. They can easily know the timing of the visiting doctor and can plan their visit accordingly. The patient portal can also show details about each doctor, their expertise, experience, etc.

This not only enhances customer experience but also helps the organization manage their schedules more efficiently.

Besides these features, here are a few other use cases of the patient portal.

Patient Portal: How it helps in Organ Donation

The portal would have all the details of a patient including organ donation information. This way the hospital will have a handy directory of organ donors. In case of death, they can harvest their organs and use it for transplants. This is also helpful when the hospital requires an organ transplant. They can immediately request one using the medical portal.

Similarly, in the case of organ requirement, the doctor would be able to put in a request easily. Then, if the portal connects to an organ donation database, the requirement can match the right biological details. However, if it does not connect to such a bank, in-house patients can also be cross-matched, with the consent of the donating patient, or someone who has their power of attorney.

Patient Portal: How it helps a Hospital’s Workflow

As a hospital, your admin staff’s work can be made easier with a patient portal in the following ways:

– They can manage initial data entry and on-boarding process of a patient.
– The smaller managerial tasks like distributing test results to doctors, scheduling appointments for patients, managing each doctor’s appointment schedule, etc.

And its benefits are not limited to just admin staff. Other personnel will also have their burden slashed in half.

– Doctors can feed in their appointment schedule, keep their profile updated, add their medical papers and certifications via the portal.
– Lab technicians and doctors can upload blood tests as well as other tests to the CRM for each patient. This will make the files more accessible to everyone, including patients, doctors, and other concerned people.

This brings me to an important aspect of the medical industry.

Doctor-Patient Confidentiality

Medicine deals with extremely sensitive data. An important legal requirement in the medical industry is doctor-patient confidentiality. It dictates that a patient’s health/case details remain solely with their doctor. Under no circumstances is the doctor allowed to disclose those details to anyone, not even the government. Therefore, the patient portal should be set up in such a way that once the patient chooses their doctor, only that doctor or team of doctors can see that patient’s details and update those records.

Of course, this also means that the patient also has only view rights to their details. If edit rights are accidentally given to a patient, then a number of things could go wrong. Because their prescriptions are also added to the portal, they can manipulate it to administer more drugs, which is dangerous to an extent that it can be life-threatening.

The Right Patient Portal Solution:

Since a hospital is a large business, and all of its data is sensitive, you need an enterprise-level CRM that values security as one of its USPs. Microsoft’s Dynamics365 CRM is the right fit for this requirement. A reputed portal development company can help you build a Dynamics CRM portal according to your industry’s requirements.

As a portal development company, CRMJetty can provide a custom Dynamics 365 portal that can suit your exact requirements. You can contact us here for a more detailed walkthrough of having a centralized workflow in your hospital with such a portal.

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