Caring.com recently hosted a wonderful webinar to discuss the value of harnessing the power of online marketing for healthcare providers and why in 2017, Skilled Nursing Facilities need to be mindful of their digital footprint and online reputation.
The truth of the matter is, it isn’t just healthcare providers whose businesses and census numbers are impacted on both ends of the spectrum based upon the quality of their online presence and visibility. Healthcare consumers are also greatly impacted by the healthcare technology protocol on the part of the provider.
Moreover, healthcare consumers stand to derive great benefit and an enhanced quality of life, from the positive synergy between healthcare and technology. It is this latter aspect which I’d like to focus on for a moment as the topic of this article.
In fact, I’m excited to give you an exceptional real-life example of the implementation of digital technology in the skilled nursing facility which yielded a life altering result for one resident!
Both the facility and the resident of this story, happily and graciously agreed to being mentioned within these lines, in the hopes that it might inspire other healthcare providers to institute similar programs at their own location, thereby increasing the quality of life for their own residents.
The Grand Healthcare System owns and operates several NY based skilled nursing and rehab centers. Their facilities feature a varied population of patients and residents and like many providers, they have noted a pattern over time, whereby their typical resident today is far more “computer astute” and savvy than the type of resident they saw as recently as 5 years ago. They were finding that without immediate access to a computer, residents (especially those who don’t own a laptop computer) were feeling isolated from society for the several weeks/months that they were in rehab, since they had no way to connect with their friends via social media, couldn’t manage their affairs (banking, mortgage, pay bills), etc.
So, the folks at The Grand decided to give them something that would help them ‘stay connected’ online and to the outside world, while they were rehabbing at the facility. They invested many thousands of dollars in developing a Grand Healthcare Mobile App with all the bells and whistles to allow their residents not only seamless internet connectivity, but also immediate facility support and information at their fingertips for the duration of their stay!
Need an extra pillow? A comforter? Want a different menu option? Requesting a room change? Concierge? The Grand made all of this and more immediately available to their residents via a fluid and specially designed web application.
The goal was twofold:
- To help their residents connect to the outside world.
- To provide them with a rich and 5-star hotel equivalent experience at their facilities.
They went out and purchased hundreds of the latest iPad smart tablets and custom developed and retro-fitted each one with their applications and technology and placed one in every room, so that every resident would have access to the entire world at their fingertips and to the creature comforts and amenities they rely upon, for the duration of their rehabilitative stay.
Deborah H. is a resident at one of the Grand Healthcare and Rehabilitation Centers in NY. Deborah was experiencing severe anxiety when she was admitted to The Grand. In fact. Her anxiety was so pronounced that she was on 2 different medications for it and it kept her up all night it a fit of restless pacing back and forth.
Then she received one of the pre-loaded smart tablets from The Grand and to quote Deborah, “I cannot put my finger on it but everything changed for me after that.”
Deborah felt as if a huge boulder was lifted off her shoulders. The tablet allowed her to connect to the outside community and to the world! It allowed her to listen to music and shop online!
The Grand’s very own Vice President, Joe Yurowiz, even met with her and taught her how to ‘face time’ with her family using the tablet! He then introduced her to the owner of the organization via the tablet!!
But it doesn’t even stop there. The tablet didn’t only effect a change in her sense of self and dignity, it allowed her to be weaned off her anxiety medications as well! That’s how powerful the transformation was.
This success story was a ‘watershed moment’ for The Grand Healthcare System, where they truly experienced the gratitude and satisfaction of all their hard work, efforts and resources.My dear fellow healthcare providers and colleagues,
When will you experience your own “watershed moment?”
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