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By John Bernot, MD

Working late trying to reach patients before surgery to make sure they know when to stop taking medication and confirm they’ve been managing their diabetes effectively?

John Bernot

Or maybe you have been going into the office early to look through patient files to identify those with high-risk behaviors that might impact the outcome of their surgery?

Today’s case managers have a hard enough job. Throw in redundant paperwork and staffing shortages, and you can see why burnout is such a problem.

Identifying ways to spend less time on redundant tasks and chasing down patients is essential to gaining time back in your day.

Here are three ways you can communicate more effectively with your patients in less time:

  1. Stop playing phone tag. One of the biggest time wasters is playing phone tag with patients. Not only is it inefficient, but it’s also not very effective. Response rates for texts to patients are 209% higher than for phone calls. Texting your patients reduces the time spent leaving multiple voicemails and gives you the added confidence that it has been delivered.
  2. Text your patients when to stop taking their medication and other critical to-dos before a procedure. Just because you talked to your patient last week about preparing for a procedure doesn’t mean they will remember the details. A simple text reminder can help ensure patients show up prepared on the day of their procedure and avoid having to reschedule because they forgot to stop taking their medication at the right time.
  3. Ask your patients to confirm they are cleaning their incision area and other essential post-op tasks. How much time could you save if patients told you they were at risk after a surgical procedure? Enabling patients to report on task adherence gives case managers more time to follow up with the patients who aren’t following recovery protocols.

Contribute to better patient outcomes

It’s essential that case managers can spend more time doing what they do best﹣helping patients navigate their health care and achieve better outcomes.

Finding the right mode and cadence to communicate effectively with patients reduces time spent on redundant tasks and reduces the likelihood of burnout.

What efficiency tools or techniques do you use?