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Cliniconex FAQ

Cliniconex FAQ 1599 889 Madison Woo

Want to learn more about how the solution works? Below are some of the frequently asked questions our team receives.

  • How long is the setup?
    • After Cliniconex receives access to your EMR, it takes a quick 1-hour workflow session to get your clinic up and running.
  • Can we merge appointment reminders?
    • Yes! If a patient has more than one approaching appointment, we can merge the reminders so that your patients only receive one notification for all appointments.
  • Who is making the calls/texts/emails to our patients?
    • All of our notifications are electronically automated, allowing you to customize your messaging to fit your clinic’s needs.
  • Can we put the wait time display and patient queue display on our website?
    • Yes! Both the Wait Time Display and the Patient Queue Displays can be shown in your clinic or on your website. We can also personalize the look to match your clinic.
  • How soon can I set up a demo or meeting with the Cliniconex team?
    • Usually, our team can set up a demo/meeting with you the same day you get in touch.
  • How customizable is your messaging?
    • Our messaging is completely customizable- the sky’s the limit! Our team works with your clinic to ensure the messaging is exactly the way you want it.
  • Who provides the support for the services?
    • All of our technical support is done by our Cliniconex team, in-house, located in Ottawa, Ontario. Our support team usually responses within minutes of contact.
  • Where are you headquartered?
    • Our office is located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
  • Can we add more providers as our clinic grows?
    • Yes, our solution grows with your clinic! No matter how many providers, patients, or appointment types your clinic adds, Cliniconex can help!
  • Can patients confirm or cancel by all methods of communication?
    • Yes! No matter voice, text, or email, your patients will be able to confirm or cancel their appointment by any method.
  • Is the messaging different if you use email vs text vs voice?
    • All messaging can be the same for each method of communication. You can modify each however you like.
  • Can you remind a patient more than once for the same appointment?
    • Yes! We can send multiple reminders to ensure patients are notified and prepared for their appointments.
  • Can we still use Cliniconex even if you don’t have an EMR/EHR?
    • Yes! We have a desktop version specifically made for clinics without an EMR/EHR
  • Can the messaging for each appointment type be different?
    • Yes! We can create different messaging with specific details for every appointment type.

Still have a question that hasn’t been answered? Have a chat with our team today!

Long Term Care Outbreaks: Why Communication is Key

Long Term Care Outbreaks: Why Communication is Key 1601 1067 Madison Woo

As cold and flu season is upon us, it’s important to take extra precautions to ensure you stay in the best health possible to stop the spread of illnesses. For Long Term Care facilities, communication is key to controlling health outbreaks and keeping residents safe.

Reduce the spread of outbreaks

Creating alerts for outbreaks as soon as they occur can greatly reduce the spread of the illnesses and decrease mortality rates.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities are among those most at risk of developing flu-related (or other infectious) complications. It is also noted that long-term care outbreaks occur most frequently throughout the winter months than any other time of the year.

Outbreaks that occur in long-term care facilities are critical as some can lead to substantial morbidity and mortality and are disruptive and costly. The most common types of Long Term Care outbreaks being gastrointestinal and respiratory infections.

In 2017, there were a total of 166 influenza/ILI outbreaks that occurred in Long-Term Care Facilities across Canada, this accounted for 57% of total influenza/ILI outbreaks in the country. The most common causes of spread include person-to-person, point-source, and hazardous foods.

Keep stakeholders informed

While managing an outbreak, communication is one of the most important aspects to keep in mind. Outlined in the Winnipeg Reginal Health Authority’s General Principles of Outbreak Management, a key responsibility of the team is to communicate necessary outbreak details to major stakeholders. This ensures they are aware of the situation and are provided critical information to keep them and Long Term Care residents, safe.

The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care states that homes should have communication-related policies and procedures, such as a policy relating to “ongoing and effective communication with residents, families of residents, staff and the media”, to combat respiratory (and other) outbreaks in the facility.

Providing timely and accurate information to stakeholders ensure staff is able to control the outbreak and contain the spread of the infection.

Return time to direct care

Although communication procedures are crucial in keeping facility residents safe, it also shifts time away from direct care of residents. The number of manual calls needed to inform resident family members of an outbreak is incredibly time-consuming and quite costly.

For example, a Long Term Care facility with 100 beds could spend up to 20 hours and cost up to $740, manually contacting resident family members for a single outbreak:

Average time per call: 12 minutes
Number of beds in the facility: 100
Average wage of a registered resource calling: $37/hour
Average time spent contacting families: 20 hours
Total cost: up to $740 per outbreak

This makes it vital for Long-Term Care facilities to have communication policies and procedures in place that are integrated into the workflow. By using industry best practices, communication requirements can come as a ‘second thought’, and allow time to be released back to direct care.

With effective communication plans in place, it makes it easy for Long Term Care facilities to focus on what’s really important.

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To learn about Cliniconex’s automated outbreak notifications and other family engagement solutions, have a chat with our team today.

 

Anthony Mar Q&A

Anthony Mar Q&A 6000 4000 Madison Woo

This week, we had a chance to sit down and chat with Cliniconex’s CEO, Anthony Mar! After a hard day at work, we asked Anthony some of our burning questions about his journey at Cliniconex and beyond. Some of his answers might surprise you!

When you created Cliniconex, why did you choose to focus on the healthcare industry?

As a user of health care services, one of the things that fascinated me was the use of computerization, digital technology, and productivity-enhancing technologies in the healthcare industry. I didn’t see many of these technologies in family practices back in 2009 when I started Cliniconex. I’m still just seeing the beginnings of productivity improvements that can be delivered through technology in healthcare settings.

What we really liked about the healthcare industry, was that the opportunity to improve productivity and the services delivered was greater than in any other industry at the time.

How was the idea of Cliniconex created?

Our first idea was creating portals for the healthcare setting, but what really took off was the application of web services for patient engagement. This is where you’re reaching out to patients who hadn’t been involved previously.

We started off in 2009 and it took us until 2011 to get our first automated appointment reminder. After 2011 we were able to grow the business by partnering with other companies. Now,  we have an outstanding partner ecosystem working with some of the top players in the industry including QHR technologies, Telus Health, drchrono, and PointClickCare to name only a few!

How have you started to see Cliniconex impact the healthcare settings?

We see the impact when our teams go to trade shows and conferences. One of the best responses I’ve heard when the team goes to these shows, they will get hugs from our existing customers, and as a person who’s been in the industry for 20 years, that that’s really rare. It shows that our technology really impacts clinics in a positive way.

What’s your family like?

I have two girls and a lovely wife. My life is split in two – one side is work, and the other is all family.

If you could be any character from a movie, who would you be and why?

I would be definitely Spider-man. There’s something about swinging from building to building and never being afraid to fall that’s very interesting.

What is the most rewarding part of being the CEO of Cliniconex?

As CEO the best part is trying to create an environment where the team comes together, the work is fun, and we achieve real results in what we’re trying to do- which is to impact the healthcare industry by using our technology and the things we do every day.

4 Ways to Enhance your Annual Quality Improvement Plan

4 Ways to Enhance your Annual Quality Improvement Plan 1600 1200 Madison Woo

In order to make improvements that lead to higher quality care, better patient outcomes, and enhanced professional development, many Canadian provinces have pushed for healthcare facilities to develop formal reports that outline quality improvement targets and activities.

In Ontario, Quality Improvement Plans (QIPs) are used to help healthcare facilities improve quality issues and achieve targets. These QIPs are vital as they outline the improvements made from the previous year, as well as goals and initiatives the organization is committed to.

As QIPs can be incredibly demanding, we’ve outlined some of the best ways to improve your annual Quality Improvement Plan:

1. Continuously monitor quality improvement

To ensure that a QIP is relevant and successfully executed, it is crucial that data is collected and evaluated on a regular basis.

Regular monitoring ensures that changes are resulting in improvement within the organization; Health Quality Ontario advises that it, “may mean setting up local data collection for the indicator using your electronic medical records system, and tracking other process measures by whatever means necessary.”

2. Review QIP resources

There are various resources available to help create the best QIPs. Health Quality Ontario has created multiple resources to help organizations successfully execute annual QIPs and boost quality improvement

From guidance documents to interactive forums, many of these resources provide examples and best practices for healthcare organizations to follow.

Other resources include external programs and software solutions that automatically measure organization performance to help remove the burden of data collection from front-end staff. These can be used to help set and measure goals for QIPs throughout the year.

3. Take advantage of the patient perspective

A key pillar for health quality in Ontario is ensuring that care is truly patient-centred; “Patient engagement is an essential way of incorporating the voices of patients and caregivers into decisions that will affect the care that patients receive”

One of the leading methods of gathering patients’ input for QIPs includes surveys. Patient surveys allow practices to take a deeper dive into the patient perspective and gather inputs from a larger pool of candidates in a shorter amount of time.

4. Create meaningful insights

Creating meaningful insights from the data gathered for QIPs is essential to enhancing the performance of healthcare organizations. As it is the most critical aspects of creating a QIP, it is also the most demanding.

With effective and analysis, practices can use QIPs to optimize costs and operations while increasing patient satisfaction and quality of care.

 

High-quality patient care stems from creating high-quality Improvement Plans. That being said, balancing constant data collection, thorough patient engagement, and resource reviews, all while trying to create meaningful insights, can be difficult.

There’s an easier way. 

Use a software solution to automate your QIP process. Effortlessly send patient experience surveys and health promotion messaging without spending any time on data collection. By automating the process you can finally focus on creating better insights from data collected and improve your quality of care.


To learn about HQI, Cliniconex’s automated quality improvement tool, and other patient engagement solutions have a chat with our team today!

4 Ways to Improve your Patients’ Waiting Room Experience

4 Ways to Improve your Patients’ Waiting Room Experience 7360 4912 Madison Woo

The waiting room is the first point of contact for patients and sets the tone for what they can expect during their visit. That being said, a waiting room is not where most people would choose to spend their time. A survey by the digital agency Sequence reported that 63% of patients say waiting is the most stressful part of the appointment experience. The agency notes there is a clear need for improvement and the stress can “weaken the body and immune system, which is the last thing anyone needs as they address their health”.

How can clinics be proactive in reducing patient stress? There are many ways to create a welcoming waiting room for a pleasant patient experience. According to a study performed for the Journal of Environmental Psychology, waiting room design can influence the patient’s perceived quality of care. Therefore, patients feel that they received a higher quality of care and feel more relaxed in appealing waiting rooms, versus those that are outdated and impersonal.

Here are four simple ways to improve your waiting room atmosphere to provide a better patient experience.

  1. Use colours to set the tone

Colours have a big impact on a person’s mood and can be used to induce varied feelings or reactions. The Antham Construction Group associates the following feelings with these colours:

  • Red: High Energy
  • Green: Healing
  • Brown: Down-to-Earth
  • Yellow: Uplifting
  • Blue: Honesty and Calmness
  • White: Simplicity
  • Purple: Creativity


2. Provide comfort with quality furniture

For example, a pediatrician’s waiting room may be purple to bring out a child’s creative side; whereas, a walk-in clinic may use soft blue or green colours to have a calming influence. Using the appropriate colours can help a patient feel welcome and invited into a space.

After checking in, patients sit on waiting room furniture for a considerable amount of time.  Nemschoff, a public furniture manufacturer, states that to create an inviting space, a waiting room should have furniture that is clean, comfortable, and allow for appropriate walking and wheelchair space. Many companies, such as Nemschoff, create furniture specifically for waiting rooms in a healthcare setting to provide patients with the comfort they need. The furniture should also be easy to clean and in compliance with healthcare regulations. Check out the Ontario waiting room module for more waiting room layout tips!

 

  1. Give your patients something to pass the time

Reading materials help patients pass the time while waiting for their appointments; however, it’s important to keep these current and relevant.  A major complaint from patients are out-of-date resources on display; keeping reading material updated and relevant can reassure a patient that the clinic is wholly committed to patient satisfaction. Other modern entertainments and informative items such as a television or public internet give patients something to do while they’re waiting and can significantly increase satisfaction.

 

  1. Manage your patients’ wait time expectations

Even while providing a welcoming environment, patients can find a waiting room to be overwhelming. The consulting company Fuelfor, states that one of the biggest sources of discomfort for patients is wondering how long the wait will be.

Without information, a patient will start to feel insecure and uncomfortable. Sequence, referenced above, also mentions that the majority of patients wish waiting rooms displayed an estimated appointment wait time to help manage their expectations.

Many clinics are choosing to provide patients with the resources needed to make them feel more comfortable while in their waiting room. Displaying wait times, patient queues, or even allowing patients to leave and return closer to their time, can go far in increasing patient confidence in the perceived quality of their care.

 

Create a waiting room your patients will love by making small improvements like these. Take the time to ask your front-end staff, or even your patients, for ideas! Provide your patients with a positive waiting room experience.


Click here to learn more about Cliniconex’s Waiting Room Concierge!

4 Ways to Combat Stress and Burnout in your Clinic

4 Ways to Combat Stress and Burnout in your Clinic 5877 4016 Madison Woo

Winter is coming, and many of us head into the busiest and dreariest time of the year, it’s important to keep your work limit and mental health in mind.

A survey performed by Statistics Canada showed that 27% of Canadian workers have high to extreme levels of stress, and 1 in 4 say the source is their work.

According to CareerBuilder, employees in the healthcare industry have the highest levels of stress, many dangerously close to burnout. Physicians and Medical Office Administrators (MOAs) are too often burdened with other tasks on top of providing care.

Job burnout is a state of emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion caused by excess and prolonged work-related stress. It occurs when a person feels overwhelmed, emotionally drained, or is unable to meet constant demands.

“Burnout is particularly relevant for people whom their work is very meaningful,” states Acadia University professor, Michael Lieter, such as the healthcare workers whose main priority is caring for patients. Due to the overwhelming amount of work, office staff is left frustrated and exhausted; “eventually that pressure and anxiety builds and builds, and it results in a burnout”.

That being said, the Government of Canada notes that “proactive employers recognize it’s important to address [burnout and] brownout before it becomes a crisis. Look out for your employees…addressing [burnouts and] brownouts and preventing them go together”. It’s critical that employers are proactive and aware of their employees’ health and take the necessary steps to reduce and prevent stressful environments.

Here are some of the best ways to reduce stress, improve productivity, and most importantly, minimize the chances of burnout in employees:

1. Take time to yourself

A job that interacts with many people is emotionally consuming. Personal development coach Nova Browning Rutherford notes the importance of taking a moment to yourself a few times a day can reduce stress.  When necessary, taking time off work, exercising, or engaging in fun activities can minimize work-related stress and make work more enjoyable. Browning also explains that patients are more impacted by engaged and caring employees versus employees who are unfocused and distracted. By “taking 5” you can reduce your own stress and engage with patients more effectively.

2. Plants and other office/desk accessories

Plants and décor are a fun and welcoming way to improve the atmosphere in a clinic. The Nursey & Garden Industry of Australia observed that plants can decrease negative feelings and stress up to 60% while improving productivity in the workplace. A great way to boost positivity, not to mention a better-looking office and cleaner air!

3. Eliminate and reduce unnecessary tasks

Every job has unenjoyable aspects, but one of the biggest sources of job burnout is having to constantly perform tasks that do not suit a person’s particular skill set or interest. Don’t waste your employee’s talents on unnecessary work- use their unique skills for higher value activities. Studies show that boring and uninteresting tasks carry enough stress to make employees feel uncomfortable in their space; boredom can be just as dangerous as overworking

4.Effectively use technology to assist you in your daily work

With the ever-growing demand for technology, there are many different systems and apps that help workplaces organize, make work easier, and focus on what’s really important. Minimize stress by implementing a solution to help employees complete their job efficiently. The best part? You can find solutions that adapt to your workflow and require little to no training.

There are many different strategies that can be used to help reduce the risk of employee job burnout.  Find a solution that fits your clinic’s needs and helps staff reduce their chances of burnout.

Read more about Cliniconex’s automated patient engagement solution here, to help reduce unnecessary stress in your clinic.

Changes to CPSBC Referral-Consultation Process Guideline

Changes to CPSBC Referral-Consultation Process Guideline 3656 1809 Madison Woo

On August 8th, 2018, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia revised the Referral-Consultation Process guideline.

This revision aims to reduce the confusion patients feel during the referral and consult process and ensure patients remain at the centre of health care. The guideline states that “keeping the patient informed throughout the referral process is of the utmost importance”.

“Waiting for an appointment with a specialist can be nerve-wracking, especially when waiting in the dark ”, stated Heidi M. Oetter MD, CEO and Registrar of CPSBC, “[patients] often feel vulnerable and lost in transition when a family physician refers them to a specialist for a consultation.”

Research and feedback from patients who had been through the referral process revealed there was a problem of communication between all parties. In turn, revisions were made to help reduce these issues. In a statement, Dr. Oetter, highlighted the 3 key changes:

  • The consulting physician is most often best suited to contact the patient with the appointment date and time.
  • A response from a consultant to a referral should ideally take two weeks
  • The time frame for a consultant to provide a follow-up report after seeing the patient should be two weeks to align with the MSP fee code

While the revised guideline will help patients feel more prepared for their appointments, it is expected to add additional work for specialists.

Although there is flexibility within the guidelines, the onus is now on specialists to contact patients with the correct appointment information and requirements, in a shorter amount of time. With some clinics already overwhelmed with the number of manual calls, this adds an extra burden on the front-end staff.

Thankfully, this pain can be easily treated.

Using technology, specialists can reduce the burden of these time-consuming and expensive calls. With automated booking notifications, patients are easily notified of referrals with no extra work for the front-end staff.

Automated notifications enable specialists to send referral notifications to patients and inform them of any specific requirements prior to the appointment including appointment times, date, location, and special instructions.

By combining the new guidelines with simple technology solutions, it creates a more efficient healthcare system and ensures patients are not left in the dark.

Click here to learn more about Cliniconex’s automated booking notifications.
Learn more about the changes to the guideline here.

 

 

Cliniconex at e-Health 2018

Cliniconex at e-Health 2018 150 150 Madison Woo

This May, Cliniconex travelled to Vancouver to participate in the annual e-Health conference, hosted by Digital Health Canada, Canada Health Infoway, and the Canadian Institution of Health Information. The 4-day conference and tradeshow brings Canadian digital health professionals together to network, connect, and learn from one another. This year, upwards of 1500 delegates attended with approximately 250 abstract presentations and presenters.

 

Sunday’s Symposium, Patient Engagement: Taking it to the Next level, saw patient and physician speakers describe their experiences with patient engagement in the healthcare system.

With eye-opening presentations from the Greg’s Wings Project, Colleen McGavin, Dr. Kendall Ho, and others, the critical nature of patient engagement and communication in Canada was outlined. Colleen McGavin and the Greg’s Wings Project described their journeys through the Canadian Healthcare system, which confirmed the value of patient engagement and the consequences of a lack thereof.

The remaining 3 days provided an abundance of education and learning opportunities for healthcare. The major focus for Cliniconex’s CEO, Anthony Mar, was those pertaining to EMRs and patient engagement.

A key takeaway from this conference is that EMR deployment is saturated in most jurisdictions, and clinic staff are focused on transferring data from paper to an electronic format. Health administrators are pleased with the benefits EMRs provide, as the data is centralized and accessible; however, some physicians still need convincing.  As well, many feel the patient’s point of view hasn’t penetrated digital health, and the question  “how has EMR deployment affected me, the patient?” remains pertinent.

What did this conference mean for us as a company?  We’ve learned new perspectives on patient engagement and had a look at upcoming patient demands for healthcare technology. “Patients are advocating for their voices and experiences to be heard, and we’re just starting to see healthcare organizations listen and act”, concluded Anthony.

We can’t wait to see how patients will take a more central role in healthcare at e-Health next year!