How healthcare organizations can share information securely

With the global disruption of the pandemic, healthcare organizations are particularly challenged to promote telehealth services and engage patients and providers while adhering to strict compliance and security regulations. Marketing automation and customer data platform (CDP) tools such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 Marketing and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Customer Insights are expanding the ways in which healthcare organizations can create communications that are personalized and relevant while respecting those regulations.

A centralized system must be secure and speedy

Sharing information across its health network is at the center of Healthdirect Australia’s mission. The nonprofit helps a population of more than 25 million Australians access the right healthcare at the right time by providing government-funded telehealth services through helplines, video calls, an online symptom checker, and a mobile app. It also delivers information to other health organizations about benefits for their customers, including service enhancements, product launches, and other advances.

To build a reliable and flexible engagement platform that could distribute information while maintaining data privacy, Healthdirect Australia chose to move to Dynamics 365 Marketing.

“We needed a centralized system to help us improve consistency and remove the risk of content duplication,” said James Harris, Marketing Manager of Healthdirect AustraliaWith that system now in place, the organization is further extending its value, as Dynamics 365 Marketing is being used to increase productivity by bringing Healthdirect Australia’s data together in one place. 

“Before using Dynamics 365 Marketing, we couldn’t adequately scale our communications,” says Harris. “Now, we can scale as required to share information and quickly provide Primary Health Networks with the latest messaging about our services. Our speed of delivery has gone from weeks to days [and] we’re able to get our message out to the right contacts much more quickly than we could before. When COVID-19 hit, we used Dynamics 365 Marketing to communicate with the Primary Health Networks, which then distributed that information to health workers on the front line.”

One industry, many concerns

The complexities, dynamics, and regulatory concerns of healthcare organizations are increasingly finding solutions in powerful marketing automation and CDP products.

Microsoft is moving quickly and strongly to meet the demands and requirements of healthcare’s fast-tracked transition to digital. Although many organizations were focused on digital transformation even before the global health crisis of 2020, the pandemic drove rapid innovation from solution providers. Dynamics 365 Marketing and Dynamics 365 Customer Insights increased their focus on the unique needs of healthcare in extraordinary circumstances.

Perhaps the most impact will come from Microsoft’s first industry-specific cloud offering, Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare. This initiative will enhance patient engagement, empower health team collaboration, improve clinical and operational insights, and make it faster and easier to provide more efficient care. Significantly, Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare is designed with the regulatory guidelines that healthcare is bound by in mind. It helps ensure the end-to-end security, compliance, and interoperability of health data. 

Commitment to compliance

Whenever an organization is dealing with people’s healthcare information, security and compliance are top-of-mind concerns. Those organizations should know that Dynamics 365 Marketing helps them meet HIPAA-compliance at the highest level. Microsoft Dynamics 365, along with other Dynamics 365 apps and Microsoft solutions, has received certification for the HITRUST CSF as Microsoft is one of the first hyperscale cloud service providers to receive this certification.

At the company level, this means one large concern is a checked box.

“Because Microsoft helps keep Dynamics 365 Marketing compliant with data protection standards in the Australian Government Information Security Manual, we have complete peace of mind that its data security meets our requirements.”—Paul Noone, Office 365 Administrator and Developer, Healthdirect Australia

Stop the siloing: information-sharing made secure

Complying with patient record confidentiality while striving for more personalized in-patient communications is a key challenge of the digital transformation of healthcare, due to the sensitivity of the personal information being handled, including patient demographics and medical histories.

Like many healthcare providers, Dayton Children’s Hospital in Dayton, Ohio used a siloed approach, storing clinical information in one system, managing call logs in another, and handling web registrations and marketing contacts in another.

However, the separation of information hampered both the care teams and the marketing team. Dayton Children’s Hospital decided to address the situation using Dynamics 365 Customer Insights to close the gap and establish a scalable, highly-secure, and HIPAA-compliant data foundation that spanned both clinical and marketing information.

Now, the Dynamics 365 Customer Insights foundation allows the marketing team to easily create new dynamic segments based on patient age, guarantor’s address, and other relevant personal activity information such as sports-related injuries. Those segments can then be pushed to Dynamics 365 Marketing for marketing campaigns.

As a result, Dayton Children’s Hospital has gained the ability to give its marketing campaigns the information to create personalized messaging while being fully confident of its HIPAA compliance: a closed-loop marketing process between Dynamics 365 Marketing and Dynamics 365 Customer Insights.

A successful healthcare organization has information management challenges as part of its ongoing operations. Optimizing all its information to communicate and serve patients while providing safeguards for privacy is a delicate balance that is readily achievable using Dynamics 365.

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