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Patient relationship management improves patient health and satisfaction

It's nearly impossible to go a week without seeing a news story about alarming increases in the rates of chronic diseases, or about the need to increase focus on disease prevention. As much as clinicians want to assist in proactively addressing the overall well-being of their patients, they're hindered by silos of electronic information stored in multiple systems or even cumbersome paper-based records.

Increased pressure to contain costs has put an even greater strain on under-funded healthcare information technology (IT) budgets, putting large-scale system overhauls out of reach for most healthcare organizations. More and more, healthcare IT professionals are looking to commercial applications that can integrate with current systems to make significant incremental improvements in patient care and satisfaction.

For years, public sector businesses have realized the benefits of deploying customer relationship management (CRM) systems that help them build long-term customer relationships. In turn, consumers have grown accustomed to dealing with businesses that proactively understand and serve their needs. Microsoft Dynamics CRM can seamlessly address patient relationship management (PRM) needs as well. Using PRM software applications, healthcare providers can move beyond treating episodes of illness to enabling proactive care by establishing productive, long-term relationships with patients. PRM applications can:

  • Help prevent additional illness. With a 360-degree view of the patient, physicians can more easily identify relationships between current symptoms and future health concerns.

  • Improve the quality and consistency of care. Automated processes can be created to ensure critical safety procedures are followed, and that the organization is in compliance with privacy and other regulatory policies.

  • Speed routine processes, such as admissions, referrals, and discharges. By analyzing the performance of routine processes over time, improvements can be made that eliminate unnecessary steps and increase patient satisfaction.

  • Eliminate time wasted accessing information. By electronically storing indexed documents, such as treatment plans, symptom-and-diagnoses relationships, and reference articles, less time is spent searching for information needed to deliver quality care.

  • Automate proactive communications. By viewing patient data sorted by certain characteristics, targeted proactive communications can easily be sent. For example, mailings to diabetic patients can inform them of new information, treatment options, or upcoming educational offerings.

  • Reduce the number of missed appointments. Tasks can easily be set up to streamline appointment reminder calls. Automated processes can be put in place for follow-up and rescheduling should appointments be missed.

By providing a centralized view of patient demographic information, standardizing and streamlining processes, and enabling proactive communications, a PRM system can help physicians improve their patients' overall health. Additionally, patients will be more satisfied with the service they receive, which increases the likelihood they'll make regular, preventative healthcare an ongoing priority.

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