Referral Management: Reducing Clicks and Streamlining Processes
Posted On: July 2nd, 2013
Clinical Consultant, McKesson
Doing more with less is the homecare mantra these days, as I often explain to the McKesson Homecare™ customers with whom I consult on home health software. In explaining how our solution supports this mantra, I like to point out how the referral management functionality in McKesson Homecare can streamline the initial intake process and facilitate referral tracking.
First, McKesson Homecare lets intake staff and managers quickly see precisely what information is missing from any referral and which referrals are overdue.
Let’s say your intake staffer gets food poisoning, and you as supervisor need to determine the status of your pending referrals. Rather than searching on his desk for paper records, you can look in the system and see exactly where you’re at with your pending referrals.
McKesson Homecare also helps reduce the number of mouse clicks needed for each intake form by automatically saving information entered before your intake staff move to the next screen. I’ve seen the automatic saving feature help reduce the number of clicks by up to 50%!
The third benefit to the referral management functionality is its function as a safety net. Because the system can be set to auto-assign referrals to an individual, managers have a level of assurance that a referral will not be overlooked.
I also like to note one nice-to-have feature for intake staff: screens can be easily customized to organize information based on user preference. Each intake person can design the page the way she wants. Let’s say you have someone who likes the first column to be the patient name, but the person sitting next to her wants the information ordered by referring physician. The column headers can be easily moved around to customize the screen.
Last, but not least, is the system’s role in tracking inquiries. This feature is highly customizable to the goals of the agency. Some agencies are held to very high conversion rate standards, so they only want to track referrals that are likely to become patients.
Other agencies want to track referrals of all kinds, including those from consumers inquiring about services. They can then use this information to evaluate additional service lines. For example, the agency may consider adding private duty nurses if it’s getting a significant amount of inquiries about this service. Similarly, some executives are working with their marketing departments to use referral information to track any missed opportunities.
So as your agency considers how to drive to leaner processes, don’t forget to start from the beginning with your intake process!