Star ratings based on patient experience are key to the health of hospitals. Consumers use them to determine where to go for treatment, and the federal government uses them to divvy funds.
A large Healthcare System was receiving unacceptable star ratings. Patient surveys reported poor guest Wi-Fi and difficulty navigating facilities, which impacted the level of funding given to the hospitals. Executive leadership wanted Wi-Fi to work seamlessly and needed application experiences that addressed the negative survey feedback
IT leadership reached out to WWT to help solve these problems. We listened to the desired requirements and saw an opportunity to support their new Patient Experience initiative by leveraging technology. The customer agreed to create an initial pilot program to prove the value of enhanced guest wireless and wayfinding in strengthening patient and visitor experience.
We first performed extensive ideation work in whiteboard sessions, workshops, demonstrations and discussions around each solution component and the feasibility of implementation.
We proposed a focus on branding and improved guest internet access, using wireless networking, a wayfinding mobile application platform and location analytics to create a new patient experience.
After testing wireless solutions using a proof of concept (POC) in our Advanced Technology Center (ATC), the customer decided to implement Cisco Core Wireless to strengthen patient and visitor connectivity.
We partnered with Phunware to create a mobile application centered around location accuracy, user analytics, mobile SDKs and Bluetooth low-energy (BLE) beacons to gather granular location data on patients and visitors.
WWT offered a strategic and cost-effective way to improve the patient experience through a comprehensive solution that included software, support, hardware and installation services. Bluetooth and wireless capabilities are now in deployment across the health system’s 39 facilities.
Network and application based data analytics provide insights into patient and visitor trends. Data including number of visitors, wait times and navigation difficulties identifies pain points within the network.
Using data analytics, the Healthcare System can pinpoint wireless capability needs, engage with waiting patients and visitors using mobile notifications and determine where additional navigational aids are needed.
Star ratings are improving for the Healthcare System based on recent customer experience surveys. The use of guest WiFi has increased significantly, and targets for application downloads were beyond agreed expectations.
The initial standalone wayfinding application provided these features and more for the facilities’ visitors. Over time, however, the organization realized that in order to deliver patients, visitors and physicians a consistent digital experience, they needed to roll in wayfinding to its main patient/consumer facing application as well as enhance that application’s capabilities.
The Healthcare System brought in software developers from WWT to integrate the features and functionality from the wayfinding application into their main consumer facing application.
While working to integrate the wayfinding functionality, we recognized that there were broader issues in the client’s user interface and user experience components, their overall code for both iOS and Android applications and the application delivery pipeline. This caused issues with easily and frequently releasing code to production environments and halted the offering of new digital experiences.
We quickly realized that the organization needed a contractor who wouldn’t just take orders and build code. Instead, they needed a partner who would be willing to say no, suggest new ideas and quickly drive the desired business outcomes.
We began assessing their entire ecosystem of value creation and proposed a several ideas for how we could help them innovate and deliver value to the consumers at a much faster pace by implementing our approach to agile software development. Our team applied a modern “test-drive” development and test automation suite to build confidence in the digital offering.
We also found that the cadence for regular feedback from users could be increased to ensure that what was built aligned to the needs and outcomes for both the Healthcare System and its customers.
A team of approximately 16 WWT software developers are now supporting the Healthcare System’s consumer facing application and physician productivity tool. Both tools allow hospital visitors and staff to more easily find the necessary care, schedule and view appointments and better understand electronic health records.
The software solution involves more than new application features – it is essentially the process by which we can develop outcomes. By first stabilizing the existing code base, user experience, delivery pipelines and security, we enable the organization to innovative faster and quickly drive revolutionary ideas in the future.
Combining a secure network with new experiences like wayfinding, push notifications and tools to help physician productivity is making it easier for visitors and staff to navigate the hospital.
Going forward, the Healthcare System has established objectives for improving the security, performance, extensibility and maintainability of their code base. Our decades of experience in the technology and healthcare industries will continue to provide value for the Healthcare System, as the organization looks to improve overall user experience and quickly turn ideas into outcomes.