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Digitalizing medical practices: Where to start for an effective transition to digital?

Published on 02/04/2024

Digitalizing my medical practice: where do I start?

Table of content

You’ve got ideas, plans and motivation – but where do you actually start? We’re here to help!

Keeping the human factor in mind when digitizing your practice

There are many good reasons to digitalize your practice: to save time and increase efficiency, to offer new services, to simplify communication… But in the end, all these changes should have just one aim: to improve the patient experience.

This can be done by making life easier for them through online appointment booking or video consultations, but also by simplifying your own life! With digital tools, you can save time on administrative tasks, giving you more time for your patients.

The importance of communication when implementing digital tools

To keep the human factor at the center when implementing digital tools, it’s a good idea to rely on patient feedback, whether in the form of discussion during the consultation, in surveys, in external documents (such as the Swiss eHealth Barometer) or even online commentaries.

By talking to your (potential) patients, you can learn how your practice and services are perceived. This enables you to plan or adapt your digital transformation strategy to meet patient demand. But communication isn’t limited to patients. Your team members can also give you valuable feedback on the tools you decide to implement. This will help you understand which ones are effective and which can be developed further.

 

🔎 1. Make an overview of the digitalization of your medical practice

Taking a snapshot of your current situation is always a good start to planning digitalization. Ask yourself: “Where exactly do I stand when it comes to digitizing my practice?” “Am I using the latest technologies?” “Do I have an online agenda?” “Does my practice have management software?” Once you’ve determined where you stand digitally, you can ask yourself what the next steps are!

In concrete terms, you might be thinking about your website and social networks, but digitalization doesn’t stop there! Perhaps you’re cutting edge equipment, or you’re offering your patients video consultations and online booking, or you’re digitizing documents… It’s all part of the process. And you’ll soon realize that you’re already in the thick of it!

 

🧭 2. Plan for the digitalization of your practice

As with many aspects of life, solid planning also simplifies the process of digitizing your practice. Use your analysis of your current situation to forge a digital transformation plan tailored to your needs and ambitions. A clear step-by-step plan will help you avoid uncertainties. You’ll have a reference point, and can actively inform those involved of the progress you’re making.

 

📰 3. Stay up to date with the latest medical digitalization news

The digital landscape is constantly evolving! Innovation and technological advances in healthcare are fast (and have been massively boosted by the COVID-19 pandemic). But don’t panic: this doesn’t mean you have to rethink your digital strategy every three months. Keep up-to-date to understand which developments and new solutions are right for your business. We might be talking about them on our news page by the way ;).

You can also visit trade shows – like Quadrimed, where you can find OneDoc every year! Our team will be happy to greet you with exclusive offers at a lively stand!

 

📣 4. Inform transparently – and early enough

We’ve already discussed the importance of communication earlier in this article. If you want your team and your patient base to follow you in your digital transformation, it’s important to highlight how these changes are beneficial for everyone.

Two key principles here are transparency and anticipation! If you offer online appointment booking,for example, you might want to explain the benefits for your patients (less waiting time on the phone, the ability to book an appointment even when the office is closed….). For your staff, you could highlight the time gained that can be reinvested in patient care.

In both cases, announce the change early enough so that the people concerned can take notice of the change and don’t feel pressured.

 

📶 5. Promote a digital culture

The new technologies and solutions that you use in your digital transformation are real tools. But only people in charge who decided those changes will see them at first. So it’s vital not only to describe the changes themselves to your team, but also the reasons behind them and the benefits they can bring. Imposing a change without taking employees into account in the process is the best way to end up in a dead end.

Experience shows that people react more positively and with greater commitment to change (and also participate more actively in the process) when they are made aware of the reasons for and benefits of change: make sure you offer a “win-win” situation!

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