Meddbase News & Updates

Meddbase helps ICB increase referrals to NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme by 1,000%+
October 27, 2022

A pilot study of 795 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging, with text prompts leading to a 1,000% increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP). The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. It was conducted by Meddbase, an advanced clinical management system provider, and NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to: ● 1,000%+ increase in NDPP referrals - from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month ● 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) - with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study ● 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period - with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16 The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report, ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The study findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37% - but it can only have the desired impact with patient participation. The study was conducted using Meddbase’s software; the system was used to enable the ICB’s Engagement Officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We've seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That's the beauty of this solution - the untapped potential is huge.” Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach patients at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to patient communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.” In addition to the white paper, Humber and North Yorkshire ICB is working with Meddbase to provide a free webinar on how to deliver a strategic ICB-managed approach to increase patient uptake in healthy lifestyle programmes. The webinar will take place on Tuesday 22nd November from 12-1pm and will be presented by Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, and Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase. Sign-up here For more information on this press release please contact Matt Thompson on [email protected] / 07587 418710 or Chris Hayter on [email protected]. / 07741 245596 About Meddbase Meddbase is an advanced secure cloud-based clinical management system that integrates Electronic Medical Records (EMR), workflow planning and patient communications as part of a truly end-to-end service to improve patient care, increase efficiencies and support clinicians. The powerful and flexible software is used across a range of settings including primary care, hospital management and occupational health and customers include the NHS, BUPA and HCA Healthcare UK. Central to the benefits of the Meddbase system is Pathways, its inbuilt industry-leading workflow management tool that enables custom configuration of a range of tasks, including sending a questionnaire to a patient, using the slot finder to book an appointment for a patient with the right clinician at the right time, attaching a document to a patient record, contacting the patient, making a patient referral, or creating a new task or form and finding a list of patients using filters. Tasks can also be shared with patients via the Patient Portal, allowing patients to have more choice and control over how their healthcare is planned and delivered, which is the goal of personalised care. These tasks can be packaged together in a single automated workflow, providing a range of benefits to both clinicians and patients: ● Increases speed and efficiency ● Saves clinicians time and allows for more time with their patients ● Allows organisations to grow without increasing staff costs ● Increases patient engagement through a secure Patient Portal ● Ensures that no task is ever forgotten About NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB is a statutory organisation accountable for NHS spend and performance for 1.7million people. The ICB is a core member of the Humber and North Yorkshire Health and Care Partnership, alongside NHS providers, local councils, health and care providers and voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations. The Health and Care Partnership is one of 42 Integrated Care Boards which cover England to meet health and care needs across an area, coordinate services and plan in a way that improves population health and reduces inequalities between different groups. The Partnership was first established in 2016 as Humber, Coast and Vale ICS, and since then partners have been working together to look for ways to join up health and care services and to make them work better for local people. The Partnership works across a geographical area of more than 1,500 square miles including the cities of Hull and York and the large rural areas across East Yorkshire and North Yorkshire, as well as North and North East Lincolnshire, serving the different health and care needs of the population. More information can be found here

Dealing with Healthcare Staffing Shortages in 2024
April 15, 2024

Last year, the Royal College of Nursing reported that the NHS waiting list was growing 4 times faster than the nurse workforce.  In the US, projections show that more than 6.5 million healthcare professionals will permanently leave their positions by 2026, while only 1.9 million will enter the workforce to replace them, creating a shortage of more than 4 million workers.  In Australia, there’s expected to be a shortage of 100,000 nursing staff by 2025. All around the world, reports like these signal a looming global crisis for an already understaffed industry, as the field braces for even greater pressures in the years to come. There are many factors that contribute to these staffing challenges, with bottlenecks going as far back as the undergraduate level. Lengthy, costly and demanding courses deter many from pursuing careers in the medical field. In the US, there's been a decline in students applying to medical school, reflecting the rigours of the courses. Those who do enter the field are met with demanding working conditions—long hours and fewer days off—compounded by the increasing number of patients, including those from seasonal fluctuations, ageing populations and the rise of chronic diseases. Some face stagnant career growth and organisational dissatisfaction, contributing to high levels of burnout. The silver lining is that while practice owners may not have control over factors like medical school enrollments that lead to shortages, there are proactive steps they can take to retain staff and prevent sudden gaps in their teams.

Strategies For Managing Short Staffing

Regardless of your practice's location, staffing shortages have likely posed challenges at one point or another. Unfortunately, projections indicate that this issue is only expected to worsen.  Addressing these concerns requires a two-pronged approach. First, you need strategies to prevent your already stretched-thin staff from dwindling further. Second, you must adapt workflows to function effectively even with a reduced team. In this section, we discuss approaches that address both aspects.

Provide Telehealth Services

Running in-person consultations can be quite demanding—it's not just the clinical staff, but also the administrative work needed to ensure everything runs smoothly. Introducing telehealth options for non-urgent appointments can help ease this burden and give practices more flexibility. This means clinicians don't always have to travel, and practices can manage with a smaller team. Plus, with the internet being such a big part of daily life, it's easier for people, especially those in remote areas, to access telehealth services. Telehealth also ties into providing flexible scheduling options, like part-time or remote work arrangements. This way, practices can attract top talent and cater to different staffing needs. By promoting a better work-life balance, practices can tackle one of the main reasons professionals leave the medical field: burnout and long hours.

Contingency Planning

Having a well-defined plan for operations when your staff is stretched thin is crucial. This could involve various strategies, such as partnering with temporary staffing services for swift gap mitigation on a short-term basis or implementing cross-training initiatives to equip existing staff members with the versatility to undertake essential responsibilities across various roles.  Empowering employees with diverse skill sets enables practices to minimise the impact of sudden staffing shortages and maintain continuity of care.

Foster a Culture of Feedback and Evaluation

Provide your staff with a platform for sharing feedback, both vertically to upper management and horizontally to team members, to encourage engagement and collaboration. Make use of surveys to gather insights and identify areas for improvement, then take proactive steps to address the challenges raised. Create a supportive environment where mental health is openly discussed and compassionately addressed, building loyalty to the practice. Regular performance evaluations and feedback sessions offer invaluable opportunities to celebrate achievements, pinpoint areas for growth and align individual goals with organisational objectives. These evaluations also enable you to identify any skill gaps among your employees, allowing you to address them proactively before they become significant issues. As employees feel valued and heard, they become advocates for your practice and can complement your recruitment efforts by recommending their colleagues to join your team.

Staff Training and Development

Provide ample opportunities for your staff to enhance their skills and knowledge. This will ease the burden on clinical staff and promote a culture of continuous improvement.  Hiring interns for the on-job training is also a great way that you can build your talent pipeline in preparation for future recruitment needs and shortages. Encouraging registered nurses and other clinical staff to assume more specialised roles, such as prescribing and diagnosing, can alleviate the burden of responsibilities on doctors. Conversely, tasks such as feeding, cleaning and low-level administrative work can be delegated to less credentialed workers, optimising the allocation of responsibilities within the healthcare team. Ultimately, the goal is to ensure that all employees are maximising their potential, and that they’re equipped with diverse skills and capabilities, so your practice can adapt to changing staffing needs and thrive in high-pressure environments.

Invest in a Good Practice Management Software

A comprehensive Practice Management Software (PMS) is essential for efficient resource allocation based on staff capability and availability. Using a PMS, practices can ensure that tasks are distributed evenly, avoiding the overburdening of one class of employees. Additionally, in the event of personal emergencies or unexpected absences, a good PMS facilitates easy reassignment of tasks, ensuring continuity of operations without disrupting patient care. A PMS also enables practices to track goals and setbacks seamlessly. With features like progress monitoring and performance metrics, practices can keep up with staff productivity and easily identify areas for improvement. This data-driven approach allows for informed decision-making and proactive management of practice operations. Meddbase applications are designed to support healthcare providers in effectively managing and retaining top talent for every position, while prioritising clinician satisfaction throughout their careers.

4 Effective Approaches for Handling Increased Patient Traffic
April 4, 2024

Although patient surges are a familiar phenomenon, often peaking seasonally or during sudden outbreaks, their implications for service delivery cannot be overlooked. A surge in patient numbers can severely impede a practice’s ability to operate optimally. Overwhelmed staff and crowded waiting rooms become commonplace, eroding patient satisfaction in the process. Long wait times, a primary driver of patient dissatisfaction (as indicated by this survey that showed that 20% of patients changed doctors due to long wait times) are further exacerbated during patient spikes.  Beyond the inconvenience, there are also substantial health risks associated with overcrowded healthcare facilities. Picture a waiting room packed during flu season, with patients seated in close proximity, some visibly unwell, coughing and sneezing. Such conditions not only lack appeal but also substantially elevate the risk of transmission of infections, endangering patients, staff and visitors. As we’ve previously explored, the modern patient is as critical of their doctor’s visit as they are of their retail shopping experience. So in this age where the patient is king, any aspect that detracts from their satisfaction should be treated as a matter of urgency. To mitigate the impact of seasonal surges on service delivery, consider implementing the following strategies:  
  • Streamlining Appointment Scheduling
Increased patient influxes often lead to a spike in appointment requests. That's why it's essential for practices to streamline scheduling processes to accommodate increased demand efficiently. Online scheduling systems offer round-the-clock accessibility, enabling patients to secure appointments without adding pressure to phone lines or administrative staff. During patient surges:
  • Ensure your online scheduling platform is equipped to handle increased traffic and is responsive enough to prevent double booking.
  • Promote awareness of online scheduling options through various channels such as SMS, email or social media posts.
  • Monitor appointment availability closely and adjust scheduling parameters as needed to accommodate surges without compromising access.
To complement your scheduling processes, consider implementing a triage system that prioritises urgent patient needs for appropriate resource allocation. A triage form in-built into your appointment booking process will ensure that severe cases receive immediate attention first while minimising contact between them and patients exhibiting milder symptoms, especially in cases of easily communicable outbreaks. Triage systems should factor in severity of symptoms, medical history and risks of complications before scheduling of appointments during seasons of high patient traffic. Additionally, review and update triage protocols regularly to ensure alignment with evolving clinical guidelines and patient needs.
  • Optimise Your Workflows To Address Delays
Regular assessments of practice workflows are essential for identifying bottlenecks and inefficiencies that may hinder operations, particularly during patient surges. These assessments involve analysing each step of the patient journey, from appointment scheduling to discharge, to pinpoint areas for improvement. During a surge event, a workflow assessment serves to:
  • Optimise Resource Allocation: By determining resource needs and implementing strategies based on workflow analysis, practices can enhance capacity and accommodate increased patient volumes.
  • Enhance Patient Experience: Streamlining processes minimises wait times, reduces patient stress and improves overall satisfaction.
Once gaps in the workflow are identified, practices can implement standardisation strategies to streamline processes and bolster operational efficiency.  For instance, establishing standardised clinical protocols and treatment pathways during an outbreak will ensure swift, consistent care delivery and as a result minimise variations, delays and errors in the workflow.  Additionally, standardised workflows offer scalability, allowing practices to adapt to fluctuations in patient volume, including surges, without sacrificing efficiency or quality.
  • Expand Operating Hours
Consider extending clinic hours to accommodate more patients outside of regular business hours. This will minimise the impact of patient surges on workflow efficiency and prevent the strain of many bookings spread over short periods. Your patients will appreciate the convenience of being able to schedule appointments at times that suit their schedules, whether it's after work, on weekends, or during other non-traditional hours. It also demonstrates a strong responsiveness to patient needs and an awareness of prevailing conditions. To support extended operating hours effectively, it's crucial that there is sufficient personnel in place to meet patient demand. This includes adequate coverage for both clinical and administrative roles. It is also essential to assess the capacity of existing facilities and resources, considering factors such as equipment availability, space constraints and support services.
  • Lean on Your Referral Networks for Collaboration
During surges, practices often struggle to meet the increased demand for specialised services or urgent care. Collaborating with referral partners offers a solution that enables practices to tap into external resources and expertise, effectively expanding their capacity to accommodate more patients without overburdening their own resources. A robust practice management system seamlessly integrates referral processes, enabling timely communication and coordination with referral partners. This ensures that patients receive necessary follow-up care without unnecessary delays. It also breaks down the barriers that hinder effective care coordination. Implementing a practice management tool that supports referral management allows practices to streamline workflows and optimise outcomes, especially during periods of heightened demand.
  • Prioritise Patient Satisfaction, Even When Constrained
During a period of high patient influx, resources feel strained, and the priority naturally shifts towards ensuring clinical safety. However, this shouldn't come at the expense of exceptional customer service.  While it may not always be feasible to predict these surges (think global pandemic), proactive planning, like ahead of tourist seasons when populations grow temporarily or winter when health issues prevail, can make a significant difference. Recognising the impact of an unexpected surge (or rapid growth) on practices, we set out to build a system that can scale to meet a practice’s evolving needs. Our setup makes it easy for clinicians and admin staff to be on/offboarded quickly and effectively in response to patient numbers.  With Meddbase, you gain access to a suite of powerful tools that empower you to tackle seasonal fluctuations with confidence. From intuitive scheduling to case prioritisation and dynamic patient-physician matching, Meddbase ensures that you are always prepared to deliver that top-tier care that your patients know and trust, no matter the circumstance

Overcoming Operational Fragmentation with Interoperability
March 27, 2024

One of the biggest challenges facing the healthcare industry right now is operational fragmentation. This fragmentation, especially evident as patients move through different stages of care, disrupts the flow of vital information needed for accurate and informed decision-making. From prescriptions to diagnoses and beyond, care coordination suffers as disparate systems struggle to speak a common language, resulting in gaps and less-than-optimal patient outcomes. Despite the promise of interoperability as a solution, there's been significant reluctance among EHR developers to fully embrace it. The decision to prioritise seamless data flow between proprietary systems at the “expense” of business is one that vendors are still grappling with. Even as technology evolves to enable plug-and-play interoperability, there's a lack of strong incentives, especially regarding the business case for full adoption.  Most have capped their efforts at foundational interoperability, assuming that as long as data can be exchanged, their technology is compliant. But true interoperability is more than just data availability; it's about ensuring its usefulness – enabling insights, trend spotting, and inference. Deloitte dubs this "radical interoperability" – characterised by open yet secure platforms and care that's driven by consumer needs.

Understanding the Fragmentation

Despite the widespread adoption of EHRs and the departure from paper-based records, the persistent gap in data sharing that plagued paper-based systems remains. For instance, only 12% to 34% of discharge summaries reach outpatient providers before a patient's first post-hospitalisation appointment, even in this age of  EHR. This lack of timely information during transitions of care has been directly linked to increased rates of re-hospitalisation. The absence of a single standard of interoperability exacerbates this problem. Different standards exist for various types of data exchange, such as sharing medical images or exchanging demographic, clinical and administrative data. This fragmentation makes it challenging to break down the silos that hinder seamless data exchange and interoperability efforts. Data interfacing and interpretation issues add yet another layer of complexity. Even when data can be exchanged between systems, differences in data formats, coding standards and terminology can lead to misinterpretation or loss of critical information. For example, one hospital may use a legacy EHR system that relies on outdated technology, while another may have implemented a modern, cloud-based solution. These disparities create interoperability barriers that may hinder data exchange between them. Additionally, many EHR systems rely on proprietary standards for data storage and exchange. These proprietary standards are often developed by individual vendors and may not be compatible with other systems. As a result, it becomes incredibly difficult and costly to integrate data from different systems or share information with external partners.  These challenges emphasise the importance of not only standardising data exchange protocols but also harmonising data interpretation practices to ensure accurate and meaningful exchange of health information.

Missed opportunities

When a patient begins their healthcare journey, they generate a wealth of data that only continues to grow over time. This pattern often repeats across various healthcare facilities as the patient seeks different forms of care. However, the absence of interoperability poses a significant obstacle to the seamless flow of this data especially when patients transition to new practices. In such instances, most practices tend to disregard incoming data from external sources, citing complexity and EHR fatigue for practitioners, who struggle to sift through vast amounts of data to extract actionable insights. Consequently, the receiving practitioner may opt to start anew, collecting their own data to match their specific standards. This can have numerous adverse effects including redundant procedures, sluggish processes, escalated costs, or even overlooking serious ailments, ultimately impacting patient outcomes. Traditionally, the burden has fallen on the end user to integrate and connect historical health data, which adds to the patient's workload and increases the risk of important information slipping through the cracks. This approach is counterproductive for practices interested in value-based care, as it leads to patient disengagement and focuses on singular goals rather than the holistic improvement of the patient's life. Moreover, siloed data often neglects to consider social factors that influence a patient's wellbeing, resulting in a myopic approach to healthcare. Interoperability offers a solution by providing a single, longitudinal health record that promotes transparency and encourages a comprehensive, chronological storytelling of a patient's journey.

Semantic Interoperability: The Gold Standard in Healthcare Data Exchange

The overarching objective of true interoperability is to ensure that data can be fully utilised by multiple, disparate systems, maximising its impact on patient care. This marks a departure from pseudo-interoperability, where data exchange occurs without an understanding of its meaning. Instead, the aspiration is for data to transmit meaning unambiguously across various platforms and systems. Given the multitude of standards available, it is impractical to expect practitioners to master each one. Instead, their focus should be solely on documenting clinical actions, while the complexities of data standards are seamlessly managed behind the scenes by systems designed for this purpose. As developers, our role is to provide platforms that achieve this task adequately, ensuring that practitioners can focus on delivering quality care without being burdened by the intricacies of data exchange protocols. Achieving semantic interoperability necessitates cooperation and commitment from all stakeholders in the healthcare ecosystem. Recognising the substantial cost incurred by the lack of interoperability, estimated at around $30 billion annually, is the first step. While legislation such as the HIT interoperability rules will propel the process forward, it is crucial that healthcare providers, payers, and third-party app developers connect with the necessity of achieving heterogeneity in order to prioritise it. Our cloud-based system isn't just a repository for data; it's a dynamic platform that enables fluid and seamless transfer of information across systems. Imagine a healthcare ecosystem where data flows effortlessly, empowering people, teams, and businesses with actionable insights at every touchpoint. That's the future we're building—one where interoperability isn't just a buzzword but a reality that transforms patient care. But our journey doesn't end here. We recognise that achieving true interoperability is an ongoing conversation—one that demands continuous innovation and evolution. That's why we're dedicated to rethinking our platforms, pushing the boundaries of what's possible, and conforming to prevailing standards that will drive progress. From exciting new features to groundbreaking advancements, Meddbase is committed to leading the path towards a future where interoperability isn't just a goal but a fundamental cornerstone of healthcare excellence.

Are You Talking to Your Employees About Their Mental Health?
December 25, 2023

In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the mental health crisis has surged, casting a shadow on wellbeing at the workplace. According to a 2023 employee wellness survey, 60% of respondents grapple with anxiety, while 56% exhibit two or more symptoms of clinical depression.  While mental health has become a buzzword in broader societal discussions, the workplace—where statistics reveal the majority are affected—still consider the subject taboo. The expectation for employees to consistently bring their A-game, coupled with the fear of potential repercussions for admitting mental health struggles, fosters a culture of silence. This, in turn, fuels the costly phenomenon of presenteeism—where employees show up but can't really work due to mental strain. The impact? A hefty price tag for UK employers, ringing in at around £15 billion annually, or an average of $2,500-3,000 per employee in the US, depending on the industry. Furthermore, there's the undeniable toll mental health issues take on employees' physical wellbeing and the concerning decline in overall happiness at work. As an employer, it's crucial not only to recognize the tangible threat posed by the mental health crisis but also to actively work towards its alleviation, for your bottom line, and more importantly, the wellbeing of your fellow human beings.

How to Bring up Mental Health At Work

Initiating a discussion about mental health in the workplace is challenging for many employers, given the deep-seated scepticism that employees harbour on the genuineness of their employers’ concern. Establishing a foundation of mutual trust and respect is the first step to nurturing an environment conducive to open and honest conversations. This means that the blame-centric culture prevalent in many workplaces should be dismantled and strict measures against the improper use of confidential information implemented. After this psychologically safe environment is created, employers can use the strategies described below to initiate meaningful dialogue regarding mental health:
  • Acknowledge the Stigma
Begin by recognizing the existence of the stigma surrounding mental health. It's essential to acknowledge that this stigma is rooted in societal norms and often perpetuated by the shame associated with mental health challenges. Create a platform for employees to express themselves without the fear of judgement, ridicule or discrimination. Consider organising seminars or retreats away from the office setting, providing a neutral and comfortable environment for these discussions.
  • Provide Mental Health Resources
Understand that some mental health issues are deeply personal and may not be suitable for open group discussions. Recognise the need for confidential and individualised support by including access to licensed therapists in your occupational health package. This allows employees facing more profound challenges to seek assistance in a private and personalised setting, reinforcing your commitment to their well-being. Ensure that the routes for seeking help are accessible yet discreet. If you have an in-house mental health professional, consider situating their office in a reserved section of the workplace. This subtle placement allows employees to seek support without drawing unnecessary attention which may compromise their sense of privacy and confidentiality.
  • Foster Constructive Feedback:
Establish a culture that encourages both giving and receiving feedback on interpersonal interactions. However, ensure that the feedback process is gentle, constructive and devoid of judgement. Creating a space where employees can share their concerns or observations freely encourages honesty and openness.  Run regular anonymous surveys to gather feedback on the overall mental health climate within the organisation. This provides insights into areas that may require improvement and allows for targeted interventions.
  • Organise Mental Health Training For Managers
Training programs for managers are pivotal in creating a mentally healthy workplace. These programs go beyond conventional management skills to provide leaders with the tools for recognizing and discussing subtle signs of mental health challenges among team members.  Equipped with the knowledge to identify potential issues early on, managers become proactive advocates for their team's wellbeing. This training ensures that managers not only respond empathetically to mental health concerns but also guide employees toward appropriate resources and support.
  • Lead by Example
As a leader, showing vulnerability and prioritising your mental well-being isn't just about personal growth; it's a transformative act that ripples through the entire organisation. By recounting personal anecdotes of navigating moments of anxiety, fear or burnout, leaders promote transparency. This approach also communicates a crucial message: addressing mental health challenges is not a sign of weakness but an integral part of professional development. In addition, consider sharing the strategies that helped overcome those tough times. This not only demystifies the discussion around mental health but also equips the team with practical tools for their own wellbeing. Such leadership sets the tone for a workplace that values the holistic health of its members.
  • Conduct Regular Check-ins
Regular one-on-one check-ins between employees and managers make for a healthy and connected workplace. This forum gives room for meaningful conversations where workloads, challenges and wellbeing can be discussed, in a friendly and conversational manner. This way, employees feel seen, heard and valued beyond their output.  This personalised approach doesn't just address immediate work concerns; it opens a door for honest discussions concerning the progress and state of the employee. It also gives the intuitive manager a chance to notice subtle shifts—perhaps signs of stress or disengagement—and address them promptly.

Focusing on Mental Health is Highly Rewarding

While creating a psychologically safe workplace might seem like an additional effort amid various other concerns, the benefits are substantial. First, there's the fulfilment of knowing you're positively impacting someone's life. But, it's not just a feel-good initiative; it's a savvy business move. Research by Deloitte shows that for every £1 invested in mental health interventions, employers stand to gain £5.30 in reduced absences, presenteeism and staff turnover. Initiating effective mental health programs begins with investing in an efficient Occupational Health Management (OHM) system. To find out more about one of the market's top-performing solutions, click here.

Meddbase Proudly Associates with SOM for Their Groundbreaking Workplace Wellbeing Whitepaper
November 27, 2023

Meddbase is proud to announce its association with The Society of Occupational Medicine in producing their latest whitepaper, "The Value of Occupational Health and Human Resources in supporting mental health and wellbeing in the workplace." This esteemed publication was produced in collaboration with the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and prepared by Dr. Kevin Teoh, a chartered psychologist at Birkbeck, University of London.

Download the whitepaper here

At Meddbase, we believe that the future of healthcare lies in the intersection of technology and medicine. Our software solutions empower Occupational Health professionals and organisations to streamline their processes, improve efficiencies, and ultimately, promote the health and wellbeing of employees. This is why we are honored to be associated with the Society of Occupational Medicine and its mission of promoting and protecting the health, wellbeing, and safety of workers.

The whitepaper underscores the importance of a more systematic approach to supporting worker mental health and wellbeing and addresses seven fundamental questions that can help organisations structure their approach effectively. These questions include establishing desired outcomes, identifying factors that contribute to mental health challenges, addressing underlying risk factors, providing workers with the necessary support, basing interventions on evidence, relying on experts for guidance, and evaluating outcomes.

As a 20 years experienced healthcare technology company, we fully endorse these principles and are committed to helping our clients incorporate them into their procedures. Meddbase's system empowers Occupational Health professionals and organisations to provide seamless management of employees' health and wellbeing.

We are thrilled to be associated with such a timely and relevant publication. We believe that it highlights the need for all organisations to take a more proactive and systematic approach to mental health and wellbeing at work, and we stand ready to assist in any way we can. Our mission to revolutionise healthcare technology through our secure, efficient, and joined-up online system has never been more vital, and we are confident that our partnership with the Society of Occupational Medicine will help us achieve our shared goals.

Download the whitepaper here

Lean Manufacturing and Worker Safety: Finding the Perfect Balance
November 20, 2023

In the manufacturing industry, conventional wisdom often pits lean principles against safety measures, portraying them as conflicting priorities. While lean methodologies relentlessly target cost reduction, safety endeavours are perceived as potential cost inflators, concerned primarily with mitigating unforeseen risks, some of which may never materialise. Lean advocates express concerns that additional safety procedures could complicate processes, leading to inefficiencies in time and resource utilisation. Conversely, safety proponents worry that integrating lean methodologies into already established procedures could introduce liability risks. However, what often escapes attention is the intrinsic interconnection between lean manufacturing and safety protocols. This link, when properly harnessed, has the power to not only minimise non-value-added activities but also exponentially boost employee engagement and productivity, realising both manufacturing and safety objectives.  In this blog, we’ll discuss the relationship between these two elements, dispelling the notion that they are mutually exclusive. We will also show how lean principles can be integrated into safety procedures, without compromising either one, ensuring overall productivity and enhancing organisational performance. 

The Nexus of Lean Manufacturing and Worker Safety

In exploring the relationship between lean and safety, a central theme emerges: efficiency. At their core, both these elements share a fundamental objective—to optimise the use of resources, (both human and non-human) to achieve an intended outcome.  Lean manufacturing strategically navigates the most productive routes, reducing wastages in materials, time and manpower. Concurrently, safety protocols endeavour to ensure uninterrupted production, eliminating time lost due to injuries or near misses. Despite the initial appearance of divergence, these seemingly opposite objectives converge at a common goal; both seek to curtail wastages, recognizing that any disruptions, be they due to operational inefficiencies or accidents result in additional, unnecessary costs.

Integrating Lean Principles into Workplace Safety

Incorporating lean principles into workplace safety involves a shift away from the narrow focus on cost-cutting synonymous with lean methodologies. Instead, the emphasis should be on eliminating inefficiencies and potential sources of loss—like plugging “drains” in the system. Identifying "drains" in safety could extend to include the re-evaluation of activities that complicate safety workflows and diminishes their effectiveness, such as unnecessary time spent filling safety reports or implementing protocols, disruptive safety audits, or ineffective utilisation of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) software.  While these processes may not immediately translate into cost reduction, addressing them can yield significant positive outcomes for workplace safety that may save costs in the long run. The following outlines how lean methodologies can be effectively implemented into workplace safety to enhance overall efficiency and mitigate potential risks.
  • Waste Reduction and Safety Improvement:
Lean manufacturing focuses on eliminating waste in processes, whether it be in the form of excess inventory, unnecessary movements, or overproduction. This process is implemented using the 5S approach:
  1. Sort: Organise the workplace by removing unnecessary items and hazards.
  2. Set in Order: Arrange the workplace in a logical and efficient manner.
  3. Shine: Keep the workplace clean and well-maintained to identify safety issues promptly.
  4. Standardise: Establish standardised processes for maintaining cleanliness and organisation.
  5. Sustain: Instil a culture of continuous improvement and sustained safety practices
Streamlining processes facilitates a seamless flow of operations, inherently reducing accidents. For instance, a clutter-free, organised workspace ensures optimised flow of activity while lowering the risk of trips and falls. This dually achieves safety and production goals, creating a harmonious balance in the work environment.
  • Employee Involvement and Safety Culture:
Central to lean principles is the involvement of employees in problem-solving and decision-making processes. When it comes to safety, this employee engagement is invaluable. Empowered workers are more likely to identify and address safety concerns promptly. Establishing a strong safety culture, where workers feel comfortable reporting issues without fear of reprisal, aligns seamlessly with the collaborative spirit of lean manufacturing.
  • Value Stream Mapping
Value Stream Mapping (VSM) is a visual management tool and integral component of lean methodologies that provides organisations with a holistic view of their processes, allowing for systematic analysis and continuous improvement. When applied to safety processes, they help organisations meticulously chart the flow of safety-related activities, enabling a detailed examination of each step. This approach facilitates the identification of potential inefficiencies, delays and waste in safety protocols. The overarching goal is to streamline safety procedures, making them more effective, responsive, and aligned with the overall objective of each workflow.
  • Standardisation and Safety Protocols
Lean manufacturing places a premium on standardising processes to minimise variations and improve efficiency. Similarly, standardised safety protocols contribute to a consistent and reliable approach to minimising risks. Integrating safety measures into standardised work procedures makes safety an intrinsic part of every operation, aligning with the lean philosophy. This integration not only enhances workplace safety but also fosters a culture where safety is integral to productivity.  The concept of Kaizen, emphasising continuous improvement, complements standardised safety protocols. Through Kaizen, employees and managers actively contribute to safety enhancements by regularly reviewing and suggesting improvements to procedures. This dynamic interplay ensures that safety measures not only meet regulatory standards but also evolve incrementally to address the changing needs of the workplace.
  • Equipment Maintenance and Operator Safety
Lean manufacturing emphasises proactive maintenance to prevent breakdowns and disruptions. This commitment to equipment reliability directly translates into enhanced operator safety. Well-maintained machinery is less likely to malfunction unexpectedly, reducing the risk of accidents caused by equipment failure. In this way, lean practices contribute to a safer working environment.
  • Metrics and Monitoring for Safety Performance
Key performance indicators (KPIs) are fundamental to both lean manufacturing and safety management. By establishing metrics related to safety performance, manufacturers can monitor, measure, and improve safety outcomes, aligning these efforts with the broader goals of lean practices. This data-driven approach ensures that safety is not just a goal but an ongoing, measurable aspect of operational excellence.

Lean In To Safety

Integrating lean methodologies into safety practices creates a potent synergy, combining streamlined processes with robust risk management.  Embrace the best of both worlds with this balanced approach on your path to optimal performance and enhanced employee well-being.

How Meddbase’s Electronic Prescription Reduces Errors, Increases Adherence and Improves Outcomes
November 17, 2023

For GPs and healthcare professionals in the UK, electronic prescriptions are not a new concept. The NHS marked its foray into electronic prescriptions back in 2005 when a surgeon's office transmitted the first-ever e-prescription to a pharmacy. Since then, the country has seen an impressive adoption rate, with the NHS estimating that, as of February this year, 95% of all prescriptions in the country are transmitted electronically. The benefits of e-prescriptions over their paper-based counterparts have been extensively reported. According to this study conducted almost a decade ago, e-prescribing was found to significantly reduce prescribing errors, boost efficiency, and contribute to substantial healthcare cost savings (north of $140 billion over 10 years) attributed to improved patient outcomes and reduced patient visits. However, despite these clear advantages, challenges persist in the processing and management of e-prescriptions. One major issue is the existence of standalone systems that fail to integrate the patient’s electronic health record, leaving prescribers without a comprehensive view of a patient's history and therefore potential drug interactions or allergies may be overlooked. Another pressing concern stems from the disjointed nature of various EHR/ e-prescription systems, resulting in a lack of a unified information source that can travel with the patient across the continuum. Reports indicate that discrepancies in patient records are in the range of 25% - 70%. Such discrepancies pose significant challenges for caregivers trying to reconcile medication as patients transition from hospitals to post-acute care settings, shift between insurers, or change ambulatory care providers These observations underscore that while the adoption of e-prescriptions represents a remarkable step forward, it has also introduced complex workflows and the potential for errors, inadvertently countering the intended benefits. 

Streamlining Drug Reconciliation with Meddbase 

Primary care clinicians using Meddbase need not invest extra effort in deciphering fragmented medication lists to understand their patients' medical histories. Instead, they can focus on shared decision-making with patients and their caregivers concerning the medications that should be continued or modified. This approach is pivotal because research indicates that over 40% of medication errors result from inadequate reconciliation during patient handoffs, contributing to adverse events in approximately 20% of cases. Providers using Meddbase can also routinely review their patients' medication lists online, identifying any deviations from the prescribed regimen. Thanks to our online database, access to current medication information is universally available, regardless of geographic location, healthcare institution, practice type, pharmacy, or insurance plan. Additionally, prescribers no longer need to worry about which pharmacy a patient frequents, as pharmacies can access and fill active prescriptions while implementing safeguards to prevent duplication. When managing rolling prescriptions, the system provides timely alerts when a review date has passed. Clinicians can then utilise patient data from consultations or remote monitoring to make informed decisions, either re-authorizing the prescription before dispensing it to the patient or terminating it when necessary. Even in scenarios where patients transition to providers who do not use Meddbase, their electronic prescription history remains readily accessible and transferrable. This seamless data transfer obviates the need for manual reconciliation by the new healthcare provider, ensuring continuity of care and enhancing clinical safety.

Meddbase Leverages Drug Information from Robust Databases

Meddbase utilises two powerful resources, First Data Bank and SNOMED-CT, to empower prescribers to bolster the efficiency of the prescribing process. Meddbase uses First Data Bank, a central drug database that is continuously updated, to ensure that the system remains in sync with the most current and accurate drug information available. This real-time information is invaluable for prescribers as it enables them to make informed decisions regarding medication choices, dosages, and formulations. When prescribers input medication orders into Meddbase, the system cross-references this data with the extensive knowledge base of First Data Bank. If any potential issues (such as contraindications or adverse interactions) are identified, the system promptly alerts the prescriber. In addition to this, Meddbase incorporates SNOMED-CT (Systematized Nomenclature of Medicine - Clinical Terms) to standardise medical terminology, enhancing communication and data exchange within the healthcare ecosystem. This standardised terminology not only streamlines the prescription process but also facilitates comprehensive patient care by ensuring that all relevant medical information is consistently and accurately recorded.

Meddbase Encourages Patient Engagement and Drug Adherence

With Meddbase's portal, patients can effortlessly log their medication usage and actively monitor their adherence to prescribed regimens. Access to their medical records also helps them monitor the impacts of the drugs they use on their well-being, empowering them to effectively discuss their progress with their caregivers, and giving them agency over their treatments. The additional access to their doctor's notes also provides them with the means to seek clarification should doubts arise, fostering transparency, active engagement, and a piqued interest in their health.  In addition to these patient-centric features, Meddbase goes the extra mile by offering an exclusive drug delivery service. This service ensures that prescribed medications reach patients promptly and conveniently, without them incurring any additional charges. Medications are dispensed and dispatched using the fastest available delivery options, including same-day courier services, minimising the time between consultation and the start of therapeutic interventions. This is invaluable for patients who may be too unwell to visit a pharmacy or have busy work schedules that limit their mobility.  Not only is Meddbase's drug delivery service convenient, it is also reliable. We partner with experienced pharmacists who accurately fill prescriptions and offer medications at competitive prices. Your patients don't need to worry about the quality of the medications delivered to their doorstep. In summary, Meddbase empowers prescribers with the tools to make informed, patient-centric drug choices. This eliminates errors, enhances compliance, and ensures optimal patient care across all settings.

6 Ways You Can Reduce Patient No-Shows in Your Practice
November 1, 2023

Patient no-shows are not just a minor inconvenience; they pose a significant challenge for healthcare practitioners and their businesses. From our experience working with providers, we understand what a disheartening (and expensive!) experience it can be to prepare for an appointment, only for the patient to fail to appear, often without any communication. What's even more distressing is that these no-shows can have severe consequences, ranging from misdiagnoses to delayed interventions that may compromise a patient's well-being. To put this issue into perspective, consider this: patient no-shows cost medical practices in the United States up to a staggering $150 billion each year. These costs are multifaceted, stemming from factors such as overstaffing, underutilised facilities, the need for rescheduling, and the burden of empty appointment slots. If you’ve been dealing with no-shows and are looking for strategies to reduce them, this post provides actionable solutions that can yield immediate results if implemented with the right practice management solution.

Putting a Number on Your No-Shows

The first step towards dealing with appointment non-compliance is to calculate how rampant it is in your practice. In the US, upwards of 70% of practitioners report no-shows ranging from 3% to 55% To calculate your own rate of no-shows for a given period, use the following formula: Percentage of no shows=Number of missed appointments/Total number of appointments (excluding walk-ins) blank Once you have this number, you can estimate how much it costs your practice when a patient does not show up for an appointment. This quantification can serve as a powerful motivator to alleviate the situation and is a great parameter to gauge the effectiveness of any measures you put in place.

Strategies to Combat No-Shows

  • Customise Appointment Schedules
When it comes to tackling no-shows, a cookie-cutter approach may not be sufficient; it's important that you dig deep to understand why some patients are missing appointments and then craft solutions that truly work for them.  Take Jane, for example, a working mother with limited availability during the week, who often struggles to find time for appointments. Offering her weekend appointment slots could help in making sure she can keep up with her healthcare. For David, an elderly patient who relies on his grandson for transportation, Thursday afternoons are perfect for his appointments because his grandson is available to drive him. And for Anne, a habitual no-shower, offering same-day or next-day appointments can help her honour her appointments.  This flexible approach meets patients halfway, allowing them to plan their healthcare around their lives, not the other way around.
  • Use Automated Appointment Reminders
Research shows that medical practices without appointment reminders suffer from high no-show rates exceeding 10%. However, it's not just about reminding; the manner and channel of communication are also important, especially considering the preferences among demographics, notably across age groups. For example, Millennials and Gen-Z prefer SMS reminders compared to emails or calls, while for older generations a phone call may be more effective.  That being said, sending out these reminders manually can be taxing for your staff and can open up room for errors, especially when you’re dealing with large patient numbers. To streamline this process, consider implementing an automated reminder system that works alongside manual scheduling efforts. To increase the impact of your reminders, use a conversational tone in your messages, encouraging patients to respond by giving them an option to reschedule or ask questions — an engaged patient is less likely to miss an appointment.
  • Always Follow Up When a Patient Misses an Appointment
It's crucial to reach out when a patient misses an appointment.  Send a compassionate message inquiring about their absence, gently probing the reasons behind it. Extend an offer to reschedule, emphasising your commitment to their well-being. If the patient is harbouring anxiety about test results, provide reassurance and guidance to ease their concerns. For those facing financial challenges, initiate an open and honest conversation, offering information about payment plans or available resources to address co-pay issues.  Avoid any form of guilt-tripping or scolding, as these tactics can deter patients from returning. By demonstrating genuine care and support, patients are more likely to feel valued and motivated to keep their future appointments.
  • Introduce and Enforce a Clear No-Show Policy 
To maintain operational efficiency and ensure that patients receive the care they need in a timely manner, implementing a no-show policy is essential. Such a policy sets expectations for patients regarding appointment attendance and the consequences of repeated no-shows. For instance, a clause in a no-show policy might encourage patients to provide at least 24 hours' notice for appointment cancellations or incur a no-show fee. After three consecutive no-shows or excessive late cancellations, the patient may be subject to a review of their appointment privileges and may be asked to seek care elsewhere. Another strategy might be to implement a proactive pay system that requires patients to pay in advance of their appointment.
  • Use Telehealth Modalities If Possible
Recognizing that transportation challenges often contribute to missed appointments, many healthcare providers are turning to telehealth as a viable solution. Telehealth eliminates the need for patients to physically travel to the clinic, offering a convenient and accessible alternative. Through video consultations and remote healthcare services, patients can receive the care they need from the comfort of their homes.
  • Reduce Patient Wait Times
When patients are forced to wait for prolonged periods, their perception of the healthcare experience may be negative, increasing the likelihood of them missing future appointments. To address this issue, implement strategies to streamline and minimise patient wait times such as optimising scheduling, improving workflow efficiency, and utilising digital check-in systems so that patients can experience quicker and more punctual appointments

Expedite Results with an Excellent Practice Management Solution

As we've observed, many factors contributing to patient no-shows are non-clinical and revolve around administrative issues. These issues can be effectively addressed by implementing a comprehensive solution such as Meddbase that empowers patients to seamlessly schedule, reschedule, and receive timely reminders for their appointments without imposing additional burdens on your staff. With Meddbase, you gain the tools to enhance patient engagement, reduce no-show rates, and improve overall practice efficiency, ensuring that patients receive the care they need, precisely when they need it.

EHRs as Clinical Decision Support Tools
October 23, 2023

In the course of your day as a physician, your workspace is inundated with an extensive stream of information. Patient histories, lab results, medication lists, and treatment plans—all crucial components of the healthcare puzzle—demand your attention. The manual synthesis and timely implementation of this data, without delays or errors, can be a complex and incredibly demanding task. However, as Electronic Health Records (EHRs) evolve to encompass more capabilities, they have emerged as indispensable tools for healthcare providers. These robust systems now enhanced with Clinical Decision Support (CDS) functionalities, play a pivotal role in supporting and validating decision-making. They empower providers with increased confidence in their choices, all while drawing from a wealth of data and patient histories meticulously recorded and monitored over time.

The Integration of Clinical Decision Support in EHRs

Clinical Decision Support refers to the use of computer-based tools and systems to assist healthcare professionals in making informed and timely decisions about patient care. These tools are designed to provide clinicians with relevant clinical information, guidelines, and recommendations at the point of care.  This integration of CDS functionalities has evolved to become integral in EHRs, extending their purpose beyond mere data recording. As a result, they contribute significantly to reducing liabilities for providers, expediting the delivery of timely care, and facilitating smoother post-acute transitions.

Key Components of Clinical Decision Support

  • Comprehensive Patient Data: CDS systems gather and integrate a wide range of patient data, including medical history, lab results, allergy information, medication lists, and more from EHRs and other sources.
  • Rules and Algorithms: They employ predefined rules and algorithms that analyse patient data to identify potential issues, patterns, or discrepancies.
  • Alerts and Reminders: CDS systems generate alerts and reminders for healthcare providers. These can range from medication dosing alerts to vaccination reminders, ensuring that critical tasks are not overlooked.
  • Clinical Guidelines: Many CDS systems incorporate clinical guidelines and evidence-based recommendations into their algorithms. These guidelines are sourced from reputable medical literature and organisations to support best practices in healthcare.
  • Data Visualisation: Some CDS tools present data in a visual format, making it easier for clinicians to interpret complex information. Graphs, charts, and dashboards can help in the decision-making process.
  • Customisation: CDS systems often allow customization to align with the specific needs and preferences of healthcare organisations, individual clinicians and their patients. 

Benefits of Clinical Decision Support Systems

Enhanced Patient Safety

One of the primary ways CDS systems enhance patient safety is by providing timely alerts.  Imagine a scenario where you prescribed medication to a patient with a severe allergy to one of its ingredients, unbeknownst to you. Before the prescription is finalised, the CDS system intervenes, flashing a warning signal to you, alerting you of this potentially life-threatening error and protecting the patient from harm. Dosage errors, too, fall under the vigilant gaze of CDS. It ensures that medications are administered at the correct doses, reducing the risk of over or under medication. This precision is especially crucial in critical care settings.

Improved Clinical Efficiency

Clinical Decision Support systems come to the rescue by streamlining workflows and providing the right information at the right time In the pre-CDS era, reviewing a complex patient's medical history would entail an arduous search through paper records or electronic files, taking up a significant length of time. With CDS however, relevant patient information is at the physician's fingertips, allowing for quicker decision-making. Additionally, CDS tools assist healthcare providers in prioritising tasks. They can efficiently identify high-priority cases, ensuring that urgent matters receive immediate attention. This not only saves time but also contributes to better patient outcomes.

Evidence-Based Care

A physician faced with a complex diagnosis relies on CDS systems to provide access to the most recent research findings, clinical guidelines, and treatment options. This empowers the physician to make decisions rooted in the latest evidence, optimising patient care. Furthermore, CDS tools contribute to the standardisation of care practices across healthcare organisations. By ensuring that clinicians have access to current guidelines, they aid in reducing variations in care, leading to more consistent and effective treatments.

Population Health Management

Beyond individual patient care, Clinical Decision Support systems excel in analysing data across patient populations, paving the way for proactive healthcare strategies. For instance, a healthcare organisation aiming to improve preventive care measures for a specific condition can use CDS to analyse data from EHRs to identify at-risk populations, track trends, and identify areas that require intervention. This data-driven approach enables healthcare organisations to implement preventive measures before conditions escalate, ultimately, contributing to better population health management, reducing the burden on healthcare systems and improving the overall well-being of communities.

Clinical Decision Support in Action

A stellar illustration of supported clinical decision making in practice is a pilot project conducted by the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board using   Meddbase. Through this initiative, the Board harnessed the power of CDS to efficiently identify patients at risk of Type 2 Diabetes within selected practices in the region. Applying predefined criteria, the system effectively selected these patients and initiated contact with them via SMS, all on the Meddbase platform, emphasising the significance of a comprehensive healthcare management solution.  The result of the program was a 1000% increase in patient referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme. To read more about this successful pilot, download the whitepaper here.

Meddbase vs Cliniko: A Powerful Alternative to Cliniko
October 11, 2023

So you want to buy practice management software? And you want to find out whether Meddbase is better than Cliniko? You’re on the right track; comparing products against each other is normal in any purchasing journey. However, let's consider a different approach: instead of pitting providers against each other, how about you compare them against what your practice needs so you can find the perfect fit for you?

Meddbase vs Cliniko: Why This is Not A Practice Management Software Comparison

Here’s the truth: We don’t know much about Cliniko because we’ve never used it. To give you an honest review of it, we’d have to buy it, then find a practice to use the software, then collect their feedback so we can put in a blog like this one. Then we’d have to repeat the process countless times so that we can compare ourselves against the hundreds of practice management software available in the market, which would be an expensive and extremely time consuming thing to do.  Therefore, if you stumble upon articles from our competitors comparing our software to theirs, it's likely that they haven't undergone this exhaustive process either, making their comparisons largely unsubstantiated. Taking all of this into account, we find ourselves unable to write an article that truly pits Meddbase against Cliniko.  At Meddbase, we are more interested in building trust with our client base than in outselling the competition through untruthful and unjustifiable means. So instead of staging a head-to-head race, we aim to give you the steering wheel and map, showing you how to navigate the road independently, to find solutions tailored to you because ultimately, the best software is the one that aligns perfectly with your practice's needs. Spoiler: We’re fairly certain you’ll choose us — we check all the boxes and do a lot more. Plus, we are constantly improving our software and working hard to maintain a close relationship with our clients to ensure that they implement Meddbase in a way that derives the best value for their practices.

What to Consider When Choosing a Practice Management Software

Functionality and Features: Think about what the software can actually do. Does it handle things like appointment scheduling, billing, patient records, and reports? Make sure it fits your practice's unique requirements. Ease of Use: It's crucial that your staff can easily get the hang of it. Look for software with a friendly interface, easy-to-follow workflows, and simple data entry. A good solution will not make your workflows longer or more tedious. Integration Capabilities: You want the software to play nice with other tools your practice uses, like payment platforms or pathology systems. This keeps your data flowing smoothly and makes your work more efficient. Bonus points if the software comes with some of these “additional” features built-in so you don’t have to get too many third parties involved. Customizability: Not every practice is the same. Seek out software that lets you tweak templates, forms, and workflows to match your specific processes. One-size-fits-all might not cut it. Security and Compliance: Protecting patient data is a big deal. Check if the software follows important industry rules like HIPAA or GDPR. Encryption, access controls, and regular security updates are must-haves. Data Backup and Recovery: Check if the software includes robust data backup and recovery features. This ensures that your practice's valuable information is safely stored and can be quickly restored in case of unexpected data loss due to technical glitches or other unforeseen events.  Scalability: Consider how big your practice might get. Go for software that can handle more patients, providers, and locations without slowing down or breaking the bank. Cloud-Based Accessibility: Consider whether the software operates in the cloud. Cloud-based systems offer the advantage of accessibility from anywhere with an internet connection. This means you and your team can securely access vital practice information and tools from the office, home, or even on the go. It adds a layer of flexibility and convenience to your practice management, making it easier to stay connected and productive no matter where you are. Support and Training: Good customer support and training materials are a must. Look for providers that help you get started, offer training resources, and have responsive customer service for when you hit a bump in the road. Cost and Value: Don't just look at the price tag. Think about the total cost, including setup and ongoing fees. Weigh this against the time and efficiency the software can save you. It's not just about cost; it's about the value it brings.

What To Do From Here:

Now that you know what to look for when shopping for Health Practice Management Software, you can read our blog and case studies to see how we’ve helped practices like yours streamline their operations. If you prefer to talk to a human about Meddbase and its potential benefits, contact us here. If you want to read real reviews from people who use Meddbase, go here.  

Delivering Connected Care Through Remote Patient Monitoring
October 4, 2023

In various healthcare scenarios, your patients may find themselves far from your immediate care, such as in the case of palliative or post-acute care provided at home. However, this physical distance should not diminish the importance of providing them with the attention they deserve, even in altered contexts.  Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) has played a significant role in addressing this challenge over the years. It has been utilised extensively to measure heart rhythms, remotely detect heart conditions, and monitor cardiovascular diseases. The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic only worked to propel its adoption. With lockdown measures aimed at minimising potential patient exposure to infectious individuals, there was a rapid transition from traditional in-person visits to telehealth consultations and virtual healthcare processes. This accelerated the integration of RPM into healthcare specialties that had previously lagged behind. Similar to other telehealth and telemedicine modalities, the implementation of RPM rapidly expanded and evolved during and after the pandemic. In fact, it is projected that by 2024, approximately 30 million patients in the US will have access to RPM services and tools. Additional research has also shown promising outcomes for patients with chronic diseases. One such study, conducted on subjects with obstructive pulmonary disease and congestive heart failure showed that those who were monitored remotely experienced lower readmission rates, fewer emergency visits, and even shorter hospital stays. RPM not only empowers caregivers to monitor multiple patients simultaneously, it also reduces in-person healthcare costs, alleviates the strain on hospitals, offers flexibility in care delivery, and actively encourages patient engagement. As healthcare continues to evolve, RPM stands as a crucial tool in bridging the gap between healthcare providers and patients, regardless of the physical distances that may separate them.

Benefits of Remote Patient Monitoring

  • Early Disease Detection: This study showed that RPM can detect changes in a patient's health status before symptoms become apparent. This early detection allows healthcare providers to intervene promptly, potentially preventing the progression of diseases or complications.
  • Reduced Healthcare Costs: RPM contributes substantially to cost reduction by mitigating hospital readmissions, minimising emergency room visits, and reducing the necessity for frequent in-person appointments. For instance, this healthcare clinic implemented an RPM system and achieved impressive results, saving an astounding $500,000 within just 30 days through reduced readmission costs and penalties.
Additionally, RPM eases the financial burden on patients by eliminating the need for travel to medical appointments, which has been found as one of the major stumbling blocks to patients in need of medical attention in the US.
  • Timely Medication Management: RPM helps ensure that patients take their medications as prescribed. Medication adherence is crucial for managing chronic conditions, and RPM systems can send reminders and track adherence, reducing the risk of medication-related complications.
  • Personalised Care Plans: RPM allows healthcare providers to tailor treatment plans and interventions based on individual patient data. This personalised approach ensures that patients receive the right care at the right time, improving the effectiveness of their treatment. This modality has also been found to increase self-management and engagement in patients.
  • Efficient Use of Healthcare Resources: RPM optimises the allocation of healthcare resources by focusing attention on patients who need it most. It reduces the strain on healthcare facilities, as healthcare providers can prioritise care for patients with critical needs.
  • Continuous Monitoring for Chronic Conditions: For patients with chronic illnesses, RPM offers continuous monitoring beyond sporadic office visits. This ensures that healthcare providers have a more comprehensive view of the patient's health status and can make timely adjustments to treatment plans. 
A study at the Cancer Institute at the University of Utah showed that patients enrolled in their at-home remote monitoring program had a 58% less chance of unplanned hospital visits and shorter stays in the case they were admitted.

Implementing a Remote Monitoring Strategy

Start with a Clear Strategy

Begin by defining your objectives and goals for implementing RPM. Determine which patient populations will benefit most and how RPM fits into your overall care delivery mode. Involve physicians, nurses, and other healthcare professionals in the planning process. Ensure they understand the benefits of RPM and are trained in using the technology effectively.

Select the Right Technology

Opt for RPM devices and platforms that closely align with the specific needs of your patient population and clinical requirements. It's crucial to choose technology that is user-friendly not only for patients but also for healthcare providers.  An ideal solution should allow you to create tailored protocols for monitoring, data analysis, and response to critical alerts. It should also enable you to define clear roles and responsibilities for healthcare providers based on their specialties and levels of clearance. Importantly, ensure that the chosen technology complies with data privacy and security standards, given the importance of safeguarding electronically transmitted patient data With Meddbase, you’ll enjoy seamless integration allowing you to view and manage RPM data alongside other patient records, streamlining the overall healthcare workflow.

Loop your Patients in

Start by offering a comprehensive orientation session to patients. Explain the purpose of RPM, emphasising its role in enhancing their healthcare experience and improving their overall well-being.  Provide step-by-step training on how to use the RPM devices. Ensure that patients are comfortable with the setup, including attaching sensors, taking readings, and transmitting data to the monitoring system.  Clarify what types of data will be collected through the RPM system. Patients should understand that this typically includes vital signs such as blood pressure, heart rate, blood glucose levels, and more, depending on their specific condition. Provide information on common issues or challenges patients might encounter while using the RPM devices. Ensure they know how to troubleshoot minor problems and how to reach out for technical support when needed.

Scale Gradually

Start your RPM program with a targeted approach, focusing on a smaller patient population or specific clinical conditions initially, and be open to learning and necessary adjustments.  Continuously evaluate RPM's impact on patient outcomes, cost efficiency, and satisfaction, using data to refine and optimise the program. It is vital that you also stay informed about evolving regulations and reimbursement policies to ensure ongoing compliance with changing healthcare guidelines. This adaptive strategy allows your RPM initiative to evolve effectively, benefiting your practice and the patients it serves. As we've explored, RPM offers a multitude of benefits, from early disease detection to substantial cost savings and improved patient engagement. As technology continues to advance and regulations evolve, those who embrace it stand at the forefront of a healthcare revolution that promises better outcomes for all.

Meddbase: Two Decades of Democratising Access to Healthtech Innovation
September 22, 2023

Starting with a mission to make interoperability a possibility

Will Temple spent the earlier days of his career helping medical facilities set up their technology infrastructure and quickly saw a pattern. Clinicians could only access their systems on premise, which meant they were often stuck working late hours and unable to access their systems and medical records remotely.  This was particularly challenging for medical teams that employed consultants or part-time clinicians, who had to physically be at the clinic to access their notes or write their clinical reports.   “Imagine finishing 8 hours of seeing patients, only to find yourself staying till 10 pm writing up your clinical notes," said Will Temple, Meddbase Founder.  This triggered the need for the UK’s first cloud-based EMR which quickly got interest from some of the largest medical facilities that needed a fresh perspective on what technologies can now bring.  “The concept of cloud did not exist back in 2004, it took a long time building a solution and also explaining and educating our customers on what the new cloud solution could bring for them.”  

Evolving to address complexity with depth of capabilities

While Meddbase started as an Electronic Health Record (EHR) - its customers had very specific and unique demands. From Clinical Safety, Information Security, and compliance, all the way to a complete digital journey including booking, billing, and reporting.  “What made Meddbase unique was that over the years we were not building features, we were building configurable modules.”   “We understood our clients don’t want to ‘send an invoice’, they want the ability to configure how they bill customers based on multiple-everchanging billing rules…so we needed to build something that can enable them to do so.” said Sam Wood, Product Manager at Meddbase.  Meddbase then quickly grew to become the solution of choice for enterprises such as Bupa, HCA, United Healthcare, International SOS and many others who needed a solution to meet their needs today and can predict and solve the problems of tomorrow. 

Bespoke implementations: Train hard, fight easy 

 We often notice clients asking for a faster or quicker implementation timeline because they are in a rush to get their system live and want to start using all its automation capabilities.  While Meddbase doesn’t take long to configure, we always invite customers to use the onboarding and strategic workshops during implementation to help redefine their business process in light of the new capabilities that the solution offers.  Often, organisations find themselves having to follow a process due to a lack of technology to support it. For example, how you book appointments, verify documents or update a patient record. By taking a step back and understanding what is possible with the automation capabilities of Meddbase, you are able to build cleaner and more efficient processes for your teams.  “By the end of Q2 this year, we have processed more medicals than the previous 2 years together, with no change in personnel. Would not have been possible without Meddbase!“ says one of the OHA Specialists – at the International SOS  

Customer-centric product development: Solving tomorrow's problems, today

What makes Meddbase unique, is not only the vast set of capabilities that exist in the solution today but what problems our customers face today and how they wish to solve them by relying on Meddbase.   “We like to use the term ‘battle-hardened’, we were fortunate early on to work with some of the largest healthcare leaders in the market, which meant we were at the forefront of problem-solving," says Will Temple.  Every feature or module in Meddbase originates from a challenge or a problem that our healthcare customers were trying to solve. Whether it is scaling their operations, improving patient experience, or reducing admin for their clinicians, all the features in Meddbase have been driven by our customers. 

It’s all about data  

At the end of the day, one of the main reasons customers chose to migrate to Meddbase is because organisations have an increasing need for data-driven decision-making. We designed our solutions to enable you to report on every aspect of your business giving you a pulse on hourly, daily, or weekly performance.   When customer migrate their past data into Meddbase, they are also able to maintain business continuity and capture trends on how the performance of their business evolved after the migration to Meddbase. 

Interoperability: The Missing Link to EHR Excellence
August 28, 2023

Care coordination, often considered the backbone of effective healthcare delivery, is an intricate dance of information sharing and collaboration among providers. In theory, it seems straightforward – healthcare providers should seamlessly exchange patient health information to ensure comprehensive and unified care. However, reality paints a more complex picture. Despite notable strides, achieving true care coordination remains an incredibly difficult feat. Recent statistics offer a glimpse of progress though: the percentage of hospitals using certified Electronic Health Records (EHRs) that were able to successfully exchange patient health information with other providers in the US increased from 28% in 2015 to 55% in 2021 according to the The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. These numbers reflect a tangible positive shift towards enhanced data sharing, indicating a growing awareness of the critical role that interoperability plays in modern healthcare. Yet, this increase doesn't tell the complete story. While this upward trajectory is cause for celebration, there is unfortunately still much to be desired. Even with changes in regulation and technological advancements, certain healthcare providers find themselves encumbered with EHR systems that hinder the effortless flow of data beyond the confines of their facilities. These data silos obstruct the vision of a unified healthcare ecosystem where patient information can be accessed seamlessly by various stakeholders. The need for change is clear – for healthcare providers to seamlessly share data, for patients to access their information effortlessly, and for both to reap the benefits of such a transformation. The missing link to EHR success is interoperability, which serves as the bridge that connects isolated islands of health information, ensuring that the entirety of a patient's medical history is readily available where and when it's needed most.

What is Interoperability and Why is it So Hard to Achieve?

Interoperability refers to the capability of different systems, devices, or applications to seamlessly work together, exchanging and utilising information in a smooth and efficient manner. In the healthcare context, achieving true interoperability is not solely about the exchange of data; it extends beyond to encompass the usability of shared data. The concept of "meaningful use" emerged in the US in the late noughties as a major driving force in the pursuit of EHR interoperability. Although no longer a legal requirement, meaningful use enabled users to not only capture and transmit information but also facilitated their ability to leverage this data for critical processes such as prescriptions and summaries across diverse healthcare settings, ultimately resulting in improved health outcomes. However, realising this vision has proven to be incredibly difficult. Proprietary concerns, technological disharmony, competition among healthcare providers and the complexities of customised in-house workflows further impede progress. In addition, the lack of direct incentives for vendors of EHRs to enhance the interoperability of their software further compounds the challenge, discouraging some providers from committing additional resources towards its realisation. To make matters worse, some have been found to charge users very high fees for their EHRs to interface with laboratories, blood and pathology, pharmacists and other providers according to this source.

How Meddbase Navigates Interoperability Issues

At Meddbase, our commitment to seamless software design shines through our unwavering dedication to interoperability, which facilitates the smooth sharing of data with external parties whenever necessary.

Here are some of the measures we take to ensure the interoperability of our EHR:

Conformation to Industry Standards: We implement widely recognized standards for data exchange to ensure compatibility with other systems and make it easy for data to flow seamlessly between different platforms. This way, your patient’s data can move along with them as they receive care from multiple providers on their journey to recovery. Data Mapping and Transformation: Meddbase uses modules that facilitate data mapping and transformation between different data formats and standards. This helps bridge the gap between various EHR systems' data structures, enabling smoother data sharing. Patient Identity Matching: We implement robust patient identity matching algorithms to accurately link patient records across different EHR systems. Accurate patient matching is essential for exchanging correct and relevant patient data. Consolidated Patient Records: Our features provide a consolidated view of patient records by pulling information from different sources, helping healthcare professionals to access comprehensive patient information from various systems. User-Centric Design: We prioritise user experience by designing intuitive workflows that seamlessly incorporate data from external sources. Ensuring that clinicians can easily access and interact with interoperable data leads to better adoption. Interoperable Workflows: Our design workflows encompass the complete patient journey, even across different EHR systems, which enhances seamless handoffs between healthcare providers, ensuring continuity of care. Secure Data Sharing: We implement robust security measures, such as encryption and access controls, to protect patient data during exchange. Addressing security concerns is vital to gaining trust among both healthcare providers and patients. Meddbase is Cloud-Based: Cloud-based EHRs foster interoperability by offering real-time data access across locations and centralised patient data storage. These systems bridge healthcare entities, enabling seamless data exchange, reducing implementation barriers, and supporting telemedicine, thus enhancing collaboration and patient care. Provision of Educational Resources: Meddbase offers training and resources to users on how to effectively utilise the features in our software. Correct and adequate use of our platform helps our users achieve interoperability without relying on expensive additional feature enhancements. Compliance with Regulations: We ensure that our software aligns with relevant healthcare regulations and standards, such as HIPAA, GDPR, and regional interoperability mandates. Feedback Mechanisms: Our users can easily provide feedback on interoperability features and challenges they encounter with our systems. We believe that continuous improvement based on user input can lead to more effective solutions. The journey towards interoperability involves a delicate balance of technology, regulation, collaboration and commitment among stakeholders. At Meddbase, this truth resonates even more profoundly. The potential benefits of interoperability for our esteemed clients, their valued patients and the broader healthcare ecosystem make our dedication towards achieving it well worth the effort.

Meddbase vs Pabau: A Definitive Practice Management Software Comparison
August 26, 2023

Before making most of your purchases, we’re sure you diligently scour the internet to gain as much insight into the product as possible. One stop along this journey may be pitting products against each other to see which ones hold up better for your price range and requirements. Purchasing practice management software isn’t any different. You’ve landed on this article for that same reason —you want to find out what makes us better than Pabau and why you should trust us with your practice in their stead. Truth is, you might have even read similar articles by our competitors showing you ways in which their offerings are superior to ours and how we pale by comparison.

Setting the Record Straight

If you’ve had a consultation with us, you might be surprised to note that the features we demonstrated to you have been portrayed as complex, subpar, or even marked absent in our competitors' comparison content. This might have you wondering about the rationale behind such assertions. The answer is simple: to write an in-depth review of Meddbase you need to have purchased and used it. The notion that competitor companies bought our software, enlisted an operational practice for trial runs and then dedicated a team to draft an impartial review (and then repeated this process for several other comparisons) seems implausible. Even if such feats were accomplished, the risk of bias becomes clear – it's illogical for them to allocate substantial resources only to emerge as the less favourable option. Therefore, these comparisons should be taken with a generous grain of salt.

Why this is not a Meddbase vs Pabau Comparison

Putting all this into consideration, we cannot write an article that accurately compares Meddbase to Pabau. We have not used Pabau and as such, we are unable to make an honest and objective comparison. Instead, we intend to use this space to convince you that Meddbase is a great choice of practice management software without having to put other providers down.  We are more interested in building trust with our client base than in outselling the competition through untruthful, unscrupulous and unjustifiable means. Though this article will not have a perfect answer to your search query, it will give you something even better: it will empower you to assess any practice management software, so that at any time, you can make an informed decision on the best solution. Spoiler: We're fairly certain you'll choose us — we check all these boxes and do a lot more. Plus, we are constantly improving our software and working hard to maintain a close relationship with our clients to ensure that they implement Meddbase in a manner that derives the best value for their practices.

Here Are Some Considerations Before Choosing A Healthcare Practice Management Software:

  • Functionality and Features: Consider the software's core features, such as appointment scheduling, billing, patient records management, and reporting. Ensure that it aligns with your practice's specific needs.
  • Ease of Use: A user-friendly interface is essential to minimise the learning curve for your staff. Look for intuitive navigation, customizable workflows, and easy data input.
  • Integration Capabilities: The software should seamlessly integrate with other tools your practice uses, such as pathology or payment platforms. This prevents data silos and improves workflow efficiency.
  • Customizability: A one-size-fits-all solution might not cater to your unique requirements. Look for software that allows customization of templates, forms, and workflows to match your practice's specific processes.
  • Security and Compliance: Patient data security is paramount. Ensure the software complies with industry regulations like HIPAA, GDPR, or any other relevant data protection laws. Encryption, access controls, and regular security updates are vital.
  • Scalability: Consider your practice's growth potential. Choose software that can accommodate an increasing number of patients, providers, and locations without a significant loss in performance and a major spike in price.
  • Support and Training: Adequate customer support and training resources are essential. Look for providers that offer onboarding assistance, training materials, and responsive customer service to address any issues that may arise.
  • Cost and Value: Evaluate the total cost of ownership, including initial setup, subscription fees, and potential add-on costs. Balance this against the value the software brings in terms of time savings and improved efficiency.

What To Do From Here:

Now that you know what to look for when shopping for Health Practice Management Software, you can read our blog and case studies to see how we’ve helped practices like yours streamline their operations. If you prefer to talk to a human about Meddbase and its potential benefits, contact us here. If you want to read real reviews from people who use Meddbase, go here.

The Impact of Meddbase’s Practice Management Software on Revenue Cycle Management
August 18, 2023

Picture the perfect doctor's visit: Your patient arrives for their scheduled appointment on time, seamlessly slotting into your optimised schedule. The examination flows smoothly, with the patient's comprehensive electronic health records readily accessible, facilitating accurate diagnosis and treatment decisions. As the consultation winds up, the patient's co-pay is swiftly processed, and the insurance claim is effortlessly submitted and processed before the patient leaves your premises; your practice runs like a well-oiled machine. In reality though, such a seamless experience remains unattainable for many. The payment process most especially, is marked by complexity and inefficiency; industry data shows that payments in healthcare are subject to an average 30-day delay as claims are put through convoluted processes that at times end up in refusals. This has become a thorn in the sides of countless practices, with most having to take on the daunting task of balancing the quality of care they provide and their financial well-being, against a backdrop of inflated costs and diminishing profit margins. In this blog, we dive into the importance of using practice management software to streamline the payment process, aka the revenue cycle. We'll discuss how the software, aside from its numerous utilities, can be a game-changer for struggling practices. In the end, it's not just about managing money better – it's about using technology to transform the way practices handle finances, making things smoother and more secure. Meddbase Powers Accurate Data Capture The first step towards elevating your practice's Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) is ensuring the meticulous capture of patient data from the moment they step into your practice.  Adopting a proactive approach will ensure that all pertinent information is collected right from the start. To optimise this process, Meddbase equips your front desk with an array of capabilities that seamlessly enhance data capture, ultimately bolstering the efficiency of your billing process:  Robust Data Management: Meddbase's intuitive interface simplifies patient data entry, reducing the likelihood of errors during registration. The system prompts staff to capture critical details accurately and consistently, ensuring a solid foundation for billing processes. Seamless Insurance Integration: Meddbase's robust insurance integration streamlines eligibility verification, presenting up-to-date insurance information at the click of a button. By cross-referencing patient insurance data, Meddbase confirms validity, policy changes, coverage, and beneficiary information. This ensures your staff is equipped with accurate information to guide patients effectively.

Meddbase's RCM Capabilities Reverberate Across Your Workflow

Once your patient's information is efficiently processed at the front desk, our intuitive software seamlessly streamlines subsequent processes with a keen focus on billing optimisation.  Here are some of the other benefits your practice stands to gain from adopting Meddbase: 
  • Integration of Administrative Data With Patient Care

Meddbase's RCM capabilities bridge the gap between administrative intricacies and patient interactions, ensuring that crucial patient details, insurance plans, and demographics seamlessly intertwine with the care provided. This integration forms the backbone of accurate billing and payment processing, enabling a holistic approach to managing patient financials.
  • Connection Between Clinical and Commercial Dimensions of Healthcare

By harmoniously blending Electronic Health Records (EHR) with billing systems, Meddbase's solution accelerates the payment process while simultaneously curbing additional administrative expenses. This synergy between medical services and financial transactions ensures that services rendered translate into timely and accurate compensation, bolstering the financial stability of your practice.
  • Reduction of Claim Denials

Meddbase plays a pivotal role in preventing claim denials by providing customers' staff with actionable training and resources regarding coding and billing procedures. This way, users can confidently employ automated processes with ease. Furthermore, our systems aid healthcare establishments in consistently monitoring claims to establish the root causes behind denials when they occur, improving the overall revenue cycle management.
  • Automation of Common RCM Operations

Utilising technology and AI to automate repetitive tasks brings about significant advantages in RCM. From correctly pairing patients with suitable providers to  estimating out-of-pocket expenses, or coding claims, these processes entail intricate variables that, if left to manual processing, can lead to gross errors. Our billing platform can assess such variables comprehensively, continually achieving accurate outcomes across multifaceted processes.
  • Improved Patient Payment Experience

Ensuring that your patients have a smooth financial experience is essential for patient loyalty. One study showed that 90% of patients determined whether or not they were going to return to a practice based solely on their financial experience. But precision in payment processing is just the beginning. Meddbase's holistic approach includes timely communication to keep patients informed about potential insurance gaps to promote transparency in pricing and regular reminders of upcoming appointments to empower patients to prepare financially, fostering a sense of security. Prior to the visit, your staff can also proactively assess the treatment options available for the patient, sparing them the disappointment of being turned away upon arrival. This comprehensive approach not only optimises revenue but also nurtures a positive financial experience, thus safeguarding patient loyalty. Ready to revolutionise your revenue cycle management processes? Reach out to our sales team here.

How Meddbase’s Robust Reporting Features Drive Performance and Efficiency in Practice Management and Occupational Health
August 11, 2023

At Meddbase, we are committed to providing comprehensive software solutions that streamline workflows and optimise organisational efficiency. One feature that stands out across all our offerings, from Practice Management (PM) to Occupational Health (OH), is our robust reporting capability. This feature empowers our clients to extract valuable insights from the data they collect, enabling them to make data-driven decisions that enhance their overall performance. What sets our reporting capabilities apart is that it allows users to generate reports from any component within their dashboards, providing them with the flexibility to create simplified or highly advanced reports tailored to their specific requirements. This versatility empowers healthcare professionals to effectively leverage their data, supporting evidence-based decision-making and driving improvements in practice management and occupational health.  Our software also seamlessly integrates with industry-leading data visualisation software such as Tableau and Power BI. This integration helps our clients create interactive and visually compelling reports that make for compelling storytelling and steer impactful communication.

Meddbase Report Templates

Our OH and PM software offer a range of comprehensive report templates that cater to different aspects of your organisation. These include: Patient Reports: Provide valuable insights into individual patient data, enabling personalised care and treatment plans.  Population Reports: Help users analyse trends, demographics, and health patterns within specific patient groups, facilitating targeted interventions.  Finance Reports: Offer a clear view of financial performance, tracking revenue, accounts receivables and expenses.  Performance Reports: Provide in-depth analytics to assess the overall efficiency and effectiveness of a practice.  Here are some of the ways our users leverage their reports from Meddbase:
  • Decision Support

Reports generated from PM and OH software play a critical role in providing crucial information for informed decision-making. For instance, consider a scenario where a healthcare provider wants to assess the efficiency of their appointment scheduling system. By analysing reports generated from Meddbase, they can identify patterns in patient demand and resource allocation, which can help them determine the ideal distribution of appointment slots throughout the day or week, ensuring efficient utilisation of resources and minimising patient wait times.
  • Evaluation and Strategic Planning

Reports on key performance indicators (KPIs) play a vital role in enabling our clients to monitor and assess the overall performance of their organisations. These reports include metrics such as patient satisfaction scores, appointment adherence, incident occurrence rates, revenue generation, and more. Through careful analysis, our clients gain valuable insights into their performance, allowing them to easily identify areas of improvement. In addition, these reports also inform strategic planning. Recently, one of our clients utilised patient demographics data to identify a high-demand area in their service region. With this information they made an informed decision to expand their services to that area, resulting in increased accessibility for patients and a subsequent rise in referrals.
  • Compliance with Industry Regulations

OH and PM reports go beyond mere documentation — they serve as invaluable tools in ensuring compliance with regulatory standards and laws.  Reports detailing patient consent and data access rights for instance, help clients demonstrate compliance with GDPR regulations, which can be presented to authorities to demonstrate their commitment to protecting personal data and giving individuals control over their information. Our software also includes procedures and workflows that are designed to be compliant with OSHA regulations. This way, we ensure that our users have the necessary tools and frameworks to meet occupational health and safety requirements. Logs and reports generated from our software serve as a powerful means to showcase an organisation’s compliance with set standards.
  • Financial Management

Financial management is a crucial aspect of running a successful practice, and reports from our software are instrumental in this regard. These reports encompass various financial aspects such as billing, revenue, expenses and financial performance analytics. Billing reports provide a comprehensive overview of services rendered, allowing organisations to track revenue generation accurately. They help identify billing errors or discrepancies, ensuring accurate invoicing and preventing revenue leakage.  Financial performance analytics reports provide in-depth analysis of key financial metrics, such as revenue growth, profitability, and expenses. These reports enable organisations to assess their overall financial health, identify trends, and make informed decisions to improve financial efficiency. In addition, reports from occupational health software can offer cost analysis of occupational health programs and services, providing organisations with a clear understanding of the financial impact of their occupational health initiatives. Users of Meddbase have consistently reported remarkable improvements in outcomes for both their people and practices.Get in touch with sales today to uncover benefits for practice management and occupational health the Meddbase way! 

6 Steps to Start Your Own Physiotherapy Clinic
August 5, 2023

Starting a physiotherapy clinic is not just a business endeavor; it's a commitment to enhancing people's quality of life through physical healing and rehabilitation. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the pivotal steps you need to take, from drafting an intricate business plan to the nuances of clinic design and staff management. Each step is vital in establishing a clinic that not only thrives but also makes a meaningful impact in the healthcare community.

Business Planning

Embarking on the physiotherapy venture begins with a comprehensive business plan. This isn't merely an outline but a detailed document that explores multiple facets of your proposed venture. You'd start by analyzing the market, identifying potential competitors, and pinpointing your unique selling proposition. This process involves extensive research, perhaps even surveys or focus groups to discern the needs of your potential clientele. Your plan should encompass the financial aspects, too, from initial startup costs (rent, equipment, staffing) to ongoing operational expenses, and revenue projections. Additionally, outline a clear marketing strategy: Will you be using digital advertising? How will you leverage social media? This plan will be your guiding star, and if ever you seek external funding, potential investors will scrutinize it.

Choosing the Right Location

Location is more than just a physical space; it's the environment where your business will either flourish or flounder. When scouting for locations, think about the demographic you aim to serve. Are you targeting athletes? Perhaps being close to sports facilities would be advantageous. Or are you catering to the elderly? In that case, a location in a quiet neighborhood, close to residential areas, might be ideal. Remember to consider the logistics: parking space for patients, proximity to public transportation, and ease of access. Visit multiple sites, compare rental prices, and even consider the potential for foot traffic.

Acquiring Licenses and Permits

This step is about dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s. Every region, state, or country will have different regulations governing physiotherapy practices. These may involve professional qualifications, certifications, facility standards, and even patient rights. Ensure you consult with a legal professional familiar with healthcare regulations in your area. This might involve a bit of bureaucracy, but it's essential to operate within the confines of the law. Plus, displaying your licenses prominently can boost your credibility with patients.

Designing the Clinic

The ambiance of your clinic is pivotal. Consider seeking the expertise of an interior designer who has experience with healthcare facilities. They'd understand the nuances, like ensuring treatment rooms offer privacy, creating a serene ambiance to soothe anxious patients, and maybe even incorporating elements like plants or water features that have therapeutic effects. Space should be functional: think about storage solutions for equipment, an ergonomic design for the reception area, and even the acoustics—no patient wants to overhear another's consultation.

Hiring the Right Team

Staffing is where your business plan meets reality. You'll need a mix of experienced physiotherapists and enthusiastic fresh graduates, balancing experience with innovation. But beyond skills, ensure potential hires align with the clinic's ethos and mission. Soft skills, like empathy and communication, are just as crucial in this field. Once you have your team, consider regular training programs to keep them updated with the latest in physiotherapy techniques and patient care standards.

Implementing a Management System

In our tech-savvy world, relying on traditional appointment books won't cut it. A sophisticated practice management system is in order. These systems integrate appointment scheduling, patient records, billing, and even communication into one platform. Consider ones that offer a patient portal, allowing your clients to book appointments, view their treatment plans, or even communicate concerns directly. This not only streamlines operations but enhances the patient experience, giving them a sense of involvement in their treatment journey.

Launching a physiotherapy clinic is a journey that requires patience, diligence, and a meticulous approach. From conceptualizing the business to the nitty-gritty of daily operations, each step is an opportunity to lay a robust foundation for a practice that can change countless lives for the better.

Exploring the Difference Between Primary and Secondary Care
August 2, 2023

In the realm of healthcare, understanding the nuances of primary and secondary care is essential. These two categories serve as fundamental pillars in the healthcare system, each playing a distinct role in patient management and treatment. While both are crucial, they serve different purposes and cater to varying levels of healthcare needs. In this blog post, we'll dive into the world of primary and secondary care, shedding light on the key differences that define these essential aspects of healthcare provision.

Primary Care: The First Line of Defense

Primary care forms the foundation of the healthcare system and is often the first point of contact between patients and the medical world. It focuses on providing general healthcare services to individuals and families, emphasising prevention, early intervention, and health maintenance. Primary care providers, including general practitioners (GPs), family physicians, and nurse practitioners, offer comprehensive medical services and serve as a central hub for patients' healthcare needs.

Key Characteristics of Primary Care

Comprehensive Care: Primary care providers offer a wide range of healthcare services, including routine check-ups, vaccinations, and preventive care.

Continuity of Care: Primary care emphasises building long-term relationships with patients, ensuring ongoing and consistent care over time.

First Point of Contact: In most cases, primary care is where patients seek initial medical advice and treatment, making it a crucial gateway to the healthcare system.

Holistic Approach: Primary care providers consider a patient's overall health and well-being, taking into account physical, mental, and emotional aspects.

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention: Primary care focuses on educating patients about healthy lifestyles and preventing illnesses before they become more severe.

Secondary Care: Specialised Expertise

Secondary care, on the other hand, comes into play when patients require specialised medical attention or services beyond the scope of primary care. This level of care is provided by specialists, such as cardiologists, orthopedic surgeons, and dermatologists, who have in-depth knowledge and training in specific medical fields. Secondary care often involves diagnostic and therapeutic services that require specialised equipment and expertise.

Key Characteristics of Secondary Care

Specialised Services: Secondary care offers specialised medical services, such as surgeries, advanced diagnostics, and treatments for specific conditions.

Referral-Based: Patients usually access secondary care through a referral from their primary care provider, as it addresses particular health concerns.

Hospital-Based: Many secondary care services are provided in hospital settings, where specialised equipment and facilities are available.

Complex Cases: Secondary care is equipped to handle complex medical cases that require specialised knowledge and procedures.

Collaborative Approach: Secondary care often involves collaboration between primary care providers and specialists to ensure comprehensive patient care.

Conclusion

In the world of healthcare, primary and secondary care are two vital components, each with its distinct role and focus. Primary care serves as the first line of defense, offering comprehensive and preventive healthcare services, while secondary care provides specialised expertise and treatments for complex medical conditions. Together, these levels of care form a holistic healthcare system that caters to the diverse needs of patients, ensuring their well-being from routine check-ups to specialised treatments. Understanding the difference between primary and secondary care is crucial for both healthcare professionals and patients to navigate the healthcare landscape effectively and make informed decisions about their health.

Simplify and Centralise Workflows: Transforming Public Health Management
July 31, 2023

One of the reasons our clients choose Meddbase is because of the challenges they face in efficiently handling large data and coordinating non-clinical tasks. During the onboarding process, we often find that they are using multiple single-point solutions each with dedicated functionality. For instance, they may have one software for appointment scheduling, another for resource allocation and yet another for claims and billings. Others still use pen and paper for data capture and in other aspects of their operations. Unfortunately, this disjointed approach creates coordination difficulties and negatively impacts margins because as the organisation grows, scaling each individual solution becomes an expensive undertaking — 40% of US healthcare providers say that their IT expenditure is growing at unmanageable rates. Moreover, for public health facilities that cater to large populations and handle numerous hand-offs and referrals, keeping tabs on all the moving parts becomes nearly impossible. This highlights the urgency for an integrated, one-system solution that transcends verticals and eliminates silos. Such comprehensive solutions facilitate efficient operations, reduce workloads that perpetuate errors and enable holistic, organisation-wide monitoring and control. Here are 5 benefits that public health providers can derive from the use of unified practice management solutions.

Reduced Errors With Automation of Manual Processes

A comprehensive healthcare management system helps providers streamline workflows by minimising manual intervention that leads to a significant reduction in expensive errors. Take the medical billing cycle for instance. The process is intricate and requires precision at every step, yet an alarming statistic shows that up to 80% of all medical bills have been found to contain at least one error that can lead to claim denials and rejections by insurers.  These errors often arise due to the fragmented nature of disparate systems, which lack interoperability and necessitate manual data transfer between them. On the other hand, a centralised system empowers administrators to seamlessly trace a patient's journey throughout the health continuum, significantly reducing the likelihood of inefficient handovers, redundant work and double billing. This enhances an organisation’s operational efficiency, mitigates errors and improves the overall quality of patient care.

Data Consolidation into a Unified Repository

A single, cloud-based practice management portal eliminates data cohesion issues that are endemic in environments with multi-system setups. This enables data management and analysis vital for evidence-based decision-making in public health management. By aggregating data from multiple sources and standardising data collection processes, public health agencies can derive meaningful insights, identify trends, and anticipate potential outbreaks or health risks.  A unified database plays a pivotal role when managing dynamic information, particularly critical details like a patient's contact or insurance information. In a fragmented system, keeping multiple databases up-to-date becomes a laborious and time-consuming task, risking the possibility of outdated information. This can have significant consequences, such as patients missing crucial appointments or not receiving important outreach communication, ultimately hindering engagement efforts. Additionally, leveraging data analytics enables the identification of correlations between seemingly unrelated data points, such as a patient's home address and their susceptibility to specific health conditions such as heart disease.

Improved Patient Experience With Integrated Care

With integrated EHRs and communication tools, all members of a patient’s care team can access the patient's data to have a broader view of their medical history and current therapeutic interventions. This makes it easy for them to share updates, test results, treatment changes and other pertinent information. Automatic alerts can also notify providers when there are updates to a patient’s record or changes in their condition. This level of coordination leads to higher quality, personalised care for patients and reduces the burden on clinical staff to deal with manual reporting, data entry and other administrative tasks. Ultimately, the risks of redundant tests, conflicting diagnosis and medication errors are curtailed and the providers can focus on providing patient-based care. 

Increased Scalability and Adaptability

Centralised workflows provide a foundation for scalability and adaptability in public health management. As the needs and demands of public health evolve, expertly designed practice management software can easily be modified to accommodate new requirements. This flexibility allows providers to respond quickly to emerging health threats, deploy resources efficiently and implement new strategies without disruptions.

Increased Accountability

When data and processes are transparent and accessible across the entire organisation, it leads to increased accountability. With in-built audit trails for example, administrators can identify any discrepancies, errors or unauthorised actions, serving as a valuable tool for enhancing compliance and transparency. This transparency enables effective tracking of responsibilities, follow-up on outstanding items and evaluation of performance against set metrics. Most importantly, it allows early identification of issues that could potentially impact patient care or organisational outcomes, ensuring prompt action and resolution.  A comprehensive healthcare management system transforms collaboration through process standardisation, data centralization, and workflow simplification. With a real-time view of organisational and patient data, paired with streamlined digital processes, staff work more efficiently to provide the best care.  Overall, a centralised system leads to improved financial and operational performance.

Cultivating Patient Loyalty for Sustainable Success in Healthcare
July 28, 2023

In 2022, Accenture published a research report shedding light on a concerning trend: an alarming number of patients are switching healthcare providers. The survey, conducted on 21,000 respondents, showed that 30% of patients opted for a new provider in 2021, with a staggering 80% attributing their decision to ease of access and overall patient experience offered by the new providers. As consumerism takes hold of the healthcare industry, experts report that it is becoming extremely crucial for practices to focus on providing a seamless patient experience if they hope weather this incredibly competitive landscape. Though repeat business is not a direct goal of health consumerism as it is in the mainstream, providers should still strive to be the preferred choice if their patient requires future medical attention or wishes to refer their loved ones (word of mouth referrals are still considered to be one of the most powerful tools in healthcare marketing). The Accenture survey goes on to reveal that patients value appointment availability, convenience, top-notch customer service and the ability to connect with providers through their preferred channels. Therefore to attract and retain clients, providers must ensure they achieve high patient satisfaction levels in all aspects of their operations. How Can You Build Patient Loyalty in Your Practice? Here are 5 actionable steps that you can take to increase patient loyalty:
  • Prioritise Clinical Quality
At the core of every practitioner's work, providing the highest quality of care remains paramount.  Patients' perceptions of the treatment they receive greatly influence their decision to seek ongoing support from practitioners who have delivered positive outcomes. One study in paediatrics emphasised that quality of care surpases all other factors and should always be prioritised. Additionally, a separate study on private hospitals revealed that patients who perceived their medical care as exceptional were notably more inclined to return to the same hospital for their future healthcare needs. Outstanding clinical quality acts as a powerful driver for both attracting new patients and fostering long-term retention. By consistently upholding the highest standards of care and delivering positive outcomes, healthcare providers can build a foundation of trust with their patients, leading to unwavering loyalty.
  • Patient Experience is Everything
Much like an ordinary consumer, a patient's experience in your practice significantly influences their loyalty. When patients receive top-notch medical treatment, post-care support and easy access to services, they are more likely to develop a sense of trust and connection with their healthcare providers.  Personalised care, a welcoming environment, smooth payment processes, and involvement in shared decision-making further enhance the patient experience. Wait times, a factor that may be overlooked by some practitioners, holds significant importance for new patients. This report indicates that 84% of patients consider wait time when evaluating their overall experience after a visit at the doctor’s. While it may seem like a lot to manage, adopting a practice management software like Meddbase can simplify the process. Meddbase helps practices track metrics, manage resource allotment and enhance service delivery, reducing the likelihood of patients seeking alternatives outside your system.
  • Develop a Digital Engagement Strategy
A well-crafted digital strategy enables providers to enhance patient engagement, streamline communication, and deliver personalised experiences that resonate with patients. Having a digital footprint is so essential that 60% of millennials say that they would switch providers if it meant better online access.  Implementing a patient portal for instance, that provides personalised health information, reminders for follow-ups, and educational resources can empower patients to take a proactive role in managing their health, making them likely to remain loyal. Social media platforms can also be a valuable tool to engage with patients, address their queries, and showcase transparency in your practice.  Efforts like these increase your accessibility and make you easy to work with, which boosts your credibility and legitimises your commitment to your patients over time.
  • Adopt a Patient-Centric Approach
Placing patients at the centre of healthcare decisions has been shown to have an all-round positive impact on patients and their providers. For patients with heart failure, patient centred care (PCC) was found to shorten the length of hospital stays and reduce chances of readmission. Since it also simplified coordination of care, patients were also reported to switch providers less often.  For the bottom line, PCC in the US is linked to improvements in patient experience, patient loyalty and staff engagement, which in turn increases inbound revenue and minimises the providers’ efforts to keep patients in-network.
  • Maintain Good Patient-Physician Relationships
How patients receive their treatment significantly influences their decision to return to a healthcare provider. Key factors such as the ability of healthcare professionals to actively listen, demonstrate care, instil trust, and convey hope play a critical role in patient loyalty. Additionally, effective communication, compassion, and empathy exhibited by caregivers contribute to patients' sense of being valued and heard. Collaboration among members of the healthcare team further strengthens patient loyalty, as it demonstrates a genuine concern for the patient's well-being, resulting in higher patient retention rates.  Even simple gestures of courtesy and respect hold great importance, with 97% of patients recommending a facility when providers were respectful and 70% basing their choice of provider on their most recent healthcare experience.

Measuring Patient Loyalty

Patient loyalty is a crucial factor in the success of any healthcare practice, so much so that a mere 5% increase in loyalty can translate to a remarkable 25% boost in revenue.  Measuring the impact of implementing patient loyalty strategies becomes more effective when practices can receive and incorporate feedback from patients based on their experiences.  At Meddbase, we prioritise delivering exceptional patient experiences for our clients, which is why we have partnered with Doctify, UK's leading patient review platform to support GPs, specialists, and other healthcare practitioners to gain valuable insights from patient reviews. This will go a long way in ensuring accountability, transparency and will spur continuous improvement for all practices that work with us.  In addition, this partnership will empower patients to find providers that best meet their requirements while enabling practitioners to streamline their referral processes. Together, Meddbase and Doctify are committed to driving patient-centric care and enhancing the overall healthcare landscape.

Your Choice of EHR Could Be The Cause of Increased Physician Burnout
July 19, 2023

A survey conducted on Canadian Physicians reported that 75% of participants who exhibited signs of burnout identified EHR (Electronic Health Record) Systems as one of the main stressors. Another study, published by The Mayo Clinic Proceedings, found that for every hour physicians spent in direct patient contact, they had to dedicate an extra 1 to 2 hours to EHRs and deskwork, along with an additional hour outside working hours for EHR-related activities. While EHR solutions have the potential to revolutionise service delivery in healthcare and facilitate improved care from doctors and administrative staff, their adoption has, in some cases, exacerbated the challenges that healthcare providers face in discharging their duties. Poor usability is one of the leading causes of dissatisfaction among physicians working with EHRs. This is mainly attributed to poorly designed, server-based technologies that are slow, require too much effort and break down often. Consequently, multiple studies have established a strong link between EHR usage and increased cognitive load and higher stress levels among clinicians. This issue becomes considerably significant given the rising number of doctors leaving the NHS due to burnout and dissatisfaction, amidst the ongoing shortage.

Not All EHRs Are Made Equal

The expanding functionality of EHRs beyond clinical use has increased the potential benefits to be derived from them. However, this has also made most systems incredibly difficult to operate, especially for physicians who predominantly rely on basic commands. Many vendors, in a bid to offer the most competitive solutions, have unfortunately overloaded their systems with add-ons that make operations excessively complex. These poorly designed systems often include unnecessary steps that make users struggle to perform even simple tasks, translating to valuable time spent away from patients. Eventually, this increases frustration, reduces job satisfaction and leads to burnout. The Journal of the American Medical Association has identified key elements of EHR design that negatively impact physicians’ well-being:
  • Data and Information Overload
When physicians are required to manoeuvre through an intricate web of tabs and pages filled with excessive data every time they access a patient's file, it imposes an unnecessary burden on them. This data overload not only hampers their productivity but also elevates stress levels. A properly designed EHR solution offers users the ability to filter information, enabling them to quickly locate the specific data they need. Additionally, with clearly defined roles, non-clinical workflows can be separated from clinical ones, so doctors are not weighed down by tasks like handling insurance information, allowing them to focus more on delivering quality care.
  • Slow system response times
Slow systems can have a profound impact on workflow efficiency and lead to frustration among physicians. The waiting period for screens to load or for processes to complete can result in unnecessary interruptions, hinder productivity, and create barriers to delivering timely patient care. These issues can be effectively addressed by adopting On-Cloud EHR solutions like Meddbase. Meddbase is fast, eliminates concerns related to hardware malfunctions, provides enhanced security measures and reduces hardware cost. It also enables practitioners to access patient data from anywhere, supporting your practice’s telehealth efforts.
  • Excessive data entry
Poorly designed EHRs frequently impose heavy data entry burdens on physicians, necessitating manual input of extensive patient information including medical history, diagnoses, treatment plans and documentation. This laborious data entry process is time-consuming and opens up avenues for errors. In contrast, properly designed EHRs alleviate the need for manual data entry. These well-designed systems offer interoperability by enabling seamless uploads of records for incoming new patients and facilitating smooth handovers across departments. They also incorporate automatic data capture from lab results, scans, etc eliminating the need to manually input information.
  • Issues with quick navigation
Complex and unintuitive user interfaces within EHR systems hinder efficient navigation and disrupt workflows. Meddbase, designed with the end-users in mind, sufficiently addresses these challenges. For instance, users are provided with a dedicated quick access tab that allows them to customise their interface with commonly used commands. Users can also be provided with a simplified interface with essential functionality for specific roles.  Meddbase supplements such features with online resources such as tutorials and the User Voice forum, as well as offers specialised training sessions that empower users to gain a deeper understanding of the EHR's features to enhance their proficiency.
  • Note bloat
EHR notes can become bloated with extensive documentation, including repetitive information, templates, and excessive detail. This can make it challenging for physicians to extract relevant information quickly, potentially impacting the continuity of care and clinical decision-making. Doctors also reported interference with patient-physician relationships during consultations as they had to divide their attention between reading unnecessarily long cut-and-pasted progress notes and attending to patients. Due to the abundance of information in EHRs, physicians also have concerns about overlooking critical data, such as test results, allergies, or medication interactions, which can contribute to feelings of stress and anxiety.

The Potential Of Well-Designed, Properly Implemented EHRs

Many of the benefits offered by EHRs are often overshadowed by their complex designs, poor execution and inadequate support from vendors. This makes them challenging for users to manage and utilise effectively. Instead of fulfilling their intended purpose of combating burnout, EHRs have been found to inadvertently contribute to it. One study showed that each one-point drop in EHR usability led to 2% increased odds of burnout for the people using them. This is why the choice of solution and provider is a crucial aspect when shopping for an EHR system. The right EHR has the power to assist in minimising the time devoted to mundane tasks, enabling healthcare providers to prioritise patient treatment and allowing them to concentrate on responsibilities that require human intervention such as gaining patients’ trust. It is also worth noting that some practitioners use CRM tools in lieu of EHRs with practice management functionality. Providers should recognize that comprehensive EHRs offer a wide range of possibilities that cannot adequately be substituted by CRM systems alone. While CRM systems primarily focus on managing client relationships, Meddbase provides a holistic solution that combines EHR and CRM capabilities in a single, integrated platform, allowing practices to streamline patient care and client relationship management.

What is The Purpose of Practice Management Software?
July 15, 2023

The digital transformation wave has not left the healthcare industry untouched. Amidst this evolution, practice management software (PMS) has emerged as a cornerstone for healthcare practices. But what is the core purpose of this software, and why has it become so integral? Let's unravel the answers.

1. Centralization of Administrative Tasks

A Unified Platform: At its core, Practice management software provides a single platform to manage diverse administrative tasks. Whether it’s scheduling appointments, billing, or managing patient information, everything can be accessed from a unified dashboard, streamlining daily operations.

2. Efficient Appointment Management

Eliminating Overlaps and Gaps: With a PMS, clinics can automate appointment bookings, reminders, and follow-ups. This reduces patient no-shows, ensures optimal utilization of resources, and prevents double bookings or scheduling conflicts.

3. Enhanced Billing and Financial Tracking

Accuracy and Timeliness: PMS integrates billing codes, insurance details, and patient charges, making the billing process more efficient. Automated invoicing, insurance claims processing, and financial tracking mitigate errors and ensure timely reimbursements.

4. Comprehensive Patient Records

A Holistic View: Gone are the days of physical files. PMS offers digital patient records, ensuring that healthcare providers have a comprehensive view of patient history, treatments, allergies, and more at their fingertips.

5. Regulatory Compliance and Security

Meeting Standards: Healthcare data is sensitive. PMS solutions are designed with robust security protocols and are often updated to remain compliant with healthcare regulations, ensuring that patient data is both secure and handled in line with legal standards.

6. Streamlined Communication

Bridging Gaps: Whether it's communication between various departments in a healthcare facility or between the healthcare provider and the patient, PMS offers tools to ensure seamless, efficient, and secure communication channels.

7. Reporting and Analytics

Data-driven Decisions: PMS isn’t just about managing day-to-day tasks. With integrated analytics, clinics can gain insights into patient demographics, appointment trends, revenue streams, and more, aiding in informed decision-making.

8. Scalability for Growing Practices

Future-ready: As a healthcare practice grows, so do its administrative challenges. PMS solutions are designed to be scalable, ensuring that as your practice expands, the software adapts without requiring complete overhauls.

9. Integration with Other Healthcare Solutions

Unified Ecosystem: PMS often integrates seamlessly with other digital healthcare solutions like Electronic Health Records (EHR), telehealth platforms, or lab systems, ensuring a cohesive digital ecosystem.

Conclusion

Practice management software is more than just a digital tool; it's the backbone of modern healthcare practices aiming for efficiency, accuracy, and patient satisfaction. By automating and optimizing administrative tasks, PMS allows healthcare providers to focus on what truly matters - patient care.

Top EMR Features for Physical Therapists
July 14, 2023

Physical therapy is a specialized field with unique requirements. Unlike many medical professionals, physical therapists need to track a patient's progress over extended periods, often involving various exercises, modalities, and milestones. The right Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system can streamline this process. Let's explore the must-have EMR features tailored for physical therapists.

1. Customized Templates for Physical Therapy

Every discipline within healthcare has specific needs. An EMR for physical therapists should offer specialized templates designed for PT evaluations, daily notes, progress notes, and discharge summaries. These templates should be adaptable, allowing therapists to adjust them based on different treatments or patient conditions.

2. Integrated Exercise Libraries

Physical therapy often revolves around a set of exercises tailored to the patient's needs. An integrated library of exercises, complete with images or videos and descriptions, can be invaluable. Therapists can then easily attach these to a patient's record or even share them as part of a home exercise program.

3. Visual Body Charts

For a physical therapist, the ability to visually document areas of pain, limited range of motion, or other musculoskeletal concerns on a body chart can be incredibly beneficial. EMR systems that incorporate interactive body charts allow therapists to offer a visual representation of a patient's status and progress.

4. Goal Tracking & Outcome Measures

Physical therapy is goal-oriented. An EMR system should provide tools to set, track, and monitor patient goals and outcomes. By visually representing this data, therapists, and patients can easily see progress over time, motivating adherence to treatment plans.

5. Appointment Scheduling and Reminders

Given the long-term nature of many physical therapy treatments, managing appointments becomes crucial. Integrated scheduling tools that offer automated reminders, either through SMS or email, can reduce no-shows and enhance patient compliance.

6. Telehealth Integration

The rise of telehealth has also touched physical therapy. EMRs that seamlessly integrate with telehealth platforms can enable virtual consultations, follow-ups, or exercise demonstrations, ensuring continuity of care even from a distance.

7. Mobile Compatibility

Physical therapists aren't always desk-bound. An EMR system optimized for tablets or smartphones allows therapists to update records on the go, be it in the clinic, a gym, or during a home visit.

8. Billing and Coding Assistance

Billing in physical therapy can be intricate, with specific codes for different modalities and treatments. An EMR with built-in billing assistance can streamline the process, reduce errors, and ensure timely reimbursements.

9. Interoperability

Physical therapists often collaborate with other healthcare providers, such as orthopedic surgeons or rheumatologists. An EMR system that easily shares information with other healthcare platforms can enhance collaborative care, ensuring every provider has a holistic view of the patient's health.

10. Secure Patient Portals

Communication is vital. Secure patient portals within EMR systems allow patients to access their records, communicate concerns, schedule appointments, and view their exercise plans, promoting engagement and transparency.

In conclusion, a tailored EMR for physical therapists isn't just a digital filing system. It's a tool that streamlines operations, enhances patient care, and ensures that every treatment session moves a step closer to the patient's recovery and well-being.

The Power of Automation: Optimising Public Health Operations
July 12, 2023

The widespread adoption of technology has provided an incredible opportunity for efficient workflows and automation across various industries. In healthcare however, (traditionally viewed as people-centric and heavily reliant on human expertise) the potential for automation has often been overlooked.  Mckinsey reports that the healthcare sector lags behind other industries in the adoption of AI and automation, and found out that 36% of healthcare activities that could be automated remain perversely manual, especially in data processing and analytics. In the public health sector, the implementation of automation technology can address the bottlenecks that hinder operational efficiency. By streamlining interconnected clinical and administrative-level workflows, facilities can alleviate the burden on healthcare professionals, allowing them to allocate more time and resources to patient care. This not only enhances the quality of care but also reduces the risk of errors and delays in mission-critical processes. One hospital in the US that upgraded to an integrated medical record and practice management system saved over 2,000 hours of manual effort. The migration to the new system, involving 64,000 records was conducted in less than 24 hours with no losses or errors. 

The Transformative Impact of Automation on Public Health

The integration of automation technologies offers numerous advantages that traditional manual processes simply cannot match. In this section, we delve into the numerous benefits that automation brings to public health operations, highlighting its potential to enhance efficiency, improve data accuracy, enable proactive interventions and optimise resource allocation.
  • Improved Efficiency and Productivity 

Automation eliminates the need for manual data entry and reduces the amount of time that practitioners dedicate to laboriously repetitive administrative tasks.  For instance, the traditional process of manual appointment scheduling involves aligning patient requirements with doctors' schedules and availability, which can be time-consuming and prone to errors. However, automation transforms this process by efficiently collecting patient data, including personal information and insurance details, and scheduling appointments based on these criteria. Automated reminders can also be sent to patients to notify them of upcoming appointments or any changes.  This streamlined approach enables healthcare providers to optimise workflows, minimise waiting times and maximise staff utilisation, which addresses the chronic staffing issues that plague public health facilities in the UK and around the world. Consequently, healthcare facilities can accommodate a greater number of patients, reduce administrative overhead, ensure a seamless patient experience and mitigate the cost of no-shows, which was reported to have cost the NHS £1 billion in 2022.
  • Improved Accuracy and Reduced Errors

Automation brings a high degree of accuracy and precision to healthcare operations, minimising the risk of errors and improving patient safety. By automating data collection, analysis, and reporting, healthcare providers can eliminate manual transcription errors and inconsistencies. This ensures that critical information is recorded and communicated accurately, leading to more informed decision-making and better patient outcomes.  A perfect illustration of automation at work would be Meddbase’s e-prescription platform. Meddbase cross checks prescriptions against the patient record, matching SNOMED CT terms captured during the consultation with SNOMED CT terms logged against the drug data, and can warn against adverse drug interactions and contra-inidcations, flag cautions, product warnings and side-effects. The system significantly reduces medication errors by ensuring the right medication is administered to the right patient at the right time.
  • Streamlined Clinical Workflows and Care Coordination

Electronic Health Records (EHR) systems automate the storage, retrieval and exchange of patient information, enabling healthcare providers to access comprehensive and up-to-date medical records. This real-time accessibility improves communication and collaboration between healthcare teams, enhances continuity of care and reduces the potential for medical errors resulting from incomplete or outdated information, so providers can deliver the best care, ultimately saving lives. This study revealed concerning statistics regarding the difficulties faced by general practitioners (GPs) when coordinating care with other providers in the UK. Out of all the countries participating in the survey, the UK had the highest percentage, with 70% of GPs finding it somewhat or very challenging to coordinate care. Additionally, 48% of GPs reported the need to repeat tests or procedures due to unavailable test results. The study further highlighted that 4 out of 5 practitioners encountered problems for patients due to poor coordination of care. But by using EHR systems that support the integration of automated decision support tools, practitioners can alleviate the challenges of coordination between different components of a fragmented healthcare system across the value chain.
  • Data-Driven Insights and Predictive Analytics 

Automation empowers healthcare organisations to leverage data-driven insights and predictive analytics, revolutionising the way public health is managed. By automating data processing and analysis, healthcare providers can uncover meaningful patterns, trends, and correlations in vast amounts of clinical and administrative data. This enables them to identify high-risk populations, anticipate disease outbreaks and develop timely, targeted intervention strategies at personal and public levels.
  • Inventory and Revenue Cycle Management 

Automation is a game-changer in revenue cycle management and inventory management in healthcare. In revenue cycle management, automation streamlines billing and claims processes, reducing the potential for errors and accelerating payment cycles. By automating tasks such as coding, claims submission, and payment reconciliation, healthcare providers can improve accuracy, efficiency, and cash flow. Automation also enables real-time eligibility verification, ensuring that services are provided to patients with valid insurance coverage, minimising denials and delays in reimbursement. Similarly, automation revolutionises inventory management by optimising supply chain processes, reducing waste and ensuring adequate stock levels. With automated inventory management systems, healthcare organisations can track inventory in real-time, monitor expiration dates and automate reordering processes, eliminating manual inventory counting errors. Realtime reporting of stock status is especially important for public health facilities because of the complex coordination and approval processes in the supply chain. Generally, automation in healthcare presents a significant opportunity to optimise operations. By leveraging automation technology, healthcare providers can transition from reactive to proactive planning, streamline workflows, improve data quality and gain real-time insights. As public health administrators embrace the potential of automation, they can enhance their operational capabilities and create a more efficient and sustainable healthcare system for the future.

Boost Service Level Agreement (SLA) Compliance with Agile Healthcare Management Solutions
June 27, 2023

In the public healthcare sector, delivering superior care with constrained resources while keeping up with the ever-increasing rate of technological innovation has always been arduous. This is why many practices have recognised the need for more effective approaches and have turned to agile methodologies to overcome these obstacles. Although initially rooted in software development, agile principles have permeated across various industries including healthcare administration. According to Bain & Company, the implementation of agile methodologies has resulted in notable improvements for 75% of practices that adopted them. However, the adoption has been incredibly slow— 80% of healthcare executives say they need to be more agile, but only 30% are familiar with agile innovation.  In the past, the public healthcare system has faced challenges with the uptake of e-health innovation, with the reliance of traditional, paper-based methods and inflexible processes still persisting while private practices scramble to adopt new technologies. But as agile practices gradually establish themselves as a norm in the industry, it is crucial that both public and private practices embrace new tools and workflows to keep pace with advancements. The tools that facilitate the smooth adoption of Agile, such as our Practice Management Software, have proven to not only streamline internal operations but also to increase customer engagement and satisfaction. By fostering compliance with Service-Level Agreements (SLAs), that set out the expectations and standards for service delivery, they enable practices to improve their overall performance while honouring commitments to customers.

Enhancing SLA Compliance with Agile Healthcare Practice Management Software

With the right technology, practices can quickly integrate agile methodologies to enhance efficiency, cross-collaboration and improve health outcomes, ultimately elevating the patient experience.  Here's how the latest software innovations can transform the capabilities of public providers to deliver high-quality care on time, every time.
  • Real-Time Data Access and Visibility

To effectively meet SLA requirements, health organisations need management software that allows real-time access to all relevant information.  With an agile software solution, all authorised users can view up-to-date information on:
  • Patient records, treatment plans, and outcomes. Real-time access to comprehensive medical data enables prompt identification of patients who may be at risk of missing key milestones or follow-ups.
  • Resource allocation and utilisation. Administrators have an accurate overview of staff schedules, facility occupancy, and equipment availability at all times. This visibility allows for data-driven decisions making that maximises resource efficiency and reduces service disruption.
  • Performance metrics and KPIs. Dashboards provide visibility into metrics such as patient wait times, referral response rates, and population health indicators. Leaders can instantly determine whether the organisation is meeting key targets and SLAs, so that corrective actions and process improvements can be implemented instantaneously.
  • Customisable Workflows for Optimised Resource Planning

For optimum resource planning, agile healthcare practice management software provides customisable workflows. For instance, tasks can be automatically assigned to appropriate staff based on skills, caseloads and availability, reducing downtime or the risk of burnout, regardless of fluctuations.  For common processes like patient intake, insurance verification and billing, the system can easily be customised for consistency across the organisation, and for quick integration of changes and evolving SLAs. To ensure HIPAA compliance and adherence to standard operational procedures, rules-based logic can be used to automate repetitive tasks while role-based access controls which data and features each user can view and interact with. Workflows can also be tailored to match existing processes or optimised for enhanced productivity.
  •  Automated Notifications for Proactive Monitoring

Our practice management software includes real-time alerts that allow proactive monitoring of an organisation's entire operational ecosystem. With customisable dashboards, team leads have full visibility across locations and departments, and with automated notifications (through their preferred channels such as email or SMS) they can advise when an SLA threshold is at risk of not being met. These notifications contain all details required for prompt resolution, thus reducing delays from manual information gathering. Staff can take immediate corrective action, updating the system as issues are addressed to maintain an accurate, transparent audit trail. When they occur, escalations are automatically routed to the appropriate personnel based on customised rules.
  • Seamless Communication and Collaboration

With integrated communication tools like messaging, video conferencing and screen sharing, care teams can connect and collaborate seamlessly. This is especially useful when providers need to consult colleagues or specialists to determine the best course of treatment. Referrals, transfers and other patient hand-offs are also streamlined, mitigating the risk of details falling through the cracks. An agile healthcare management software fosters a collaborative environment where all authorised individuals have a shared, up-to-date understanding of patient needs and organisational responsibilities. By enhancing communication and data transparency in this way, public health organisations can work more cohesively to achieve and surpass SLA targets. With the right solution in place, staying on top of key performance indicators (KPIs) and compliance requirements becomes a simple matter of monitoring the metrics and reports built into the system. Meddbase is at the centre of innovation in the Healthcare Practice Management industry. We have had success working with public organisations, having recently concluded a pilot study that helped increase referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) by 1000%. We are committed to providing our clients with the best-in-class solutions that empower them to leverage data-driven insights to drive meaningful change in their practices. For a free demo, contact sales here.

10 Steps to Improve Patient Communication
June 14, 2023

Effective communication is a cornerstone of successful healthcare. It not only drives patient outcomes but also cements trust and ensures holistic patient satisfaction. Let's delve deeper into the nuances of each step to refine patient communication.

1. Active Listening

Active listening isn't just about hearing but deeply understanding what the patient conveys. When healthcare providers demonstrate genuine interest in a patient's words, it creates an environment of trust. This environment is foundational for patients to be open about their symptoms, concerns, and feelings. By refraining from interruptions, giving non-verbal cues of engagement, and occasionally summarizing what's been shared, professionals can ensure that patients feel valued and understood.

2. Use Simple Language

Navigating the maze of medical terms can be daunting for many patients. By communicating in straightforward and relatable language, healthcare providers can prevent misunderstandings that could lead to medical non-compliance or even errors. Instead of overwhelming patients with jargon, it's more productive to explain conditions, procedures, or medications in terms they can easily grasp. Think of it as translating medical expertise into everyday language.

3. Employ the Teach-back Method

The teach-back method is a proactive approach to ensure patients understand the information shared with them. After explaining a diagnosis, treatment plan, or medical procedure, healthcare providers can ask the patient to paraphrase the information. This not only confirms the patient's comprehension but also provides an opportunity to rectify any misunderstandings immediately.

4. Use Visual Aids

Sometimes, words alone may not suffice, especially when explaining intricate procedures or conditions. Visual aids like diagrams, infographics, and videos can offer patients a clearer and more tangible understanding. Such aids can serve as reference points during discussions, making abstract or complex concepts more accessible.

5. Encourage Questions

Questions are a sign of engagement. Encouraging patients to ask questions doesn't just clarify doubts but also fosters an interactive dialogue. By promoting such a two-way communication channel, healthcare providers can ensure patients are actively involved in their care decisions, leading to better outcomes.

6. Offer Written Instructions

While oral explanations are vital, providing written instructions, especially for medications, post-procedure care, or lifestyle recommendations, offers patients a tangible reference. Such documents can be invaluable, ensuring patients have a clear roadmap to follow once they leave the healthcare facility.

7. Leverage Technology

Modern problems require modern solutions. By embracing technology, such as patient portals, mobile apps, and SMS reminders, healthcare providers can offer patients timely updates, appointment reminders, and vital health tips. These digital touchpoints can significantly improve adherence and engagement.

8. Cultural Sensitivity

In our diverse world, understanding cultural nuances can significantly enhance communication. By being sensitive to cultural backgrounds, traditions, and beliefs, healthcare providers can deliver care that respects and acknowledges individual patient identities.

9. Implement a Feedback Mechanism

Continuous improvement is the key to excellence. By actively seeking feedback on communication methods and interactions, healthcare establishments can identify areas for refinement, ensuring they meet the evolving needs of their patients.

10. Prioritize Continuous Training

The healthcare landscape is continuously evolving, and so are communication methodologies. Regular training sessions for staff can ensure they are equipped with the latest communication techniques, tools, and best practices.

By weaving these practices into the fabric of healthcare interactions, professionals can foster an environment of mutual trust, respect, and understanding, ensuring that patients receive the best care possible.

Embrace Change with Confidence: Overcoming Organisational Readiness Challenges with Meddbase
June 12, 2023

Navigating change within any organisation is a formidable task, but in the public healthcare sector it can be especially challenging. Limited staff buy-in, the learning curve associated with new software and potential downtime costs all contribute to the complexity of effective change management in healthcare settings. Therefore, conducting a thorough review becomes important before undertaking any transition, moreso in practice management. This review aims to verify that:
  1. The issues necessitating the change are rooted in the software and the vendors rather than the users themselves.
  2. The new, preferred solution is suitable, to stave off the recurrence of existing issues
  3. The transition is carefully coordinated to prevent grave outcomes, such as data loss during migration. 
  4. Administrators have enforced any remedial measures within their disposal to mitigate challenges
However, there are instances where transitioning to a new software becomes necessary, particularly when the existing solution no longer delivers value for money or hampers productivity. In such cases, organisations must carefully evaluate the following telltale signs that indicate that it is time to move to a new system:
  • The current solution operates on a server-based model, restricting staff from accessing data remotely.
  • The solution is difficult to use and understand, posing challenges to training and onboarding new users.
  • It lacks online appointment scheduling capabilities.
  • It addresses a single pain point and cannot be used as a standalone system.
  • It doesn’t integrate with EHR systems
  • Some aspects in the workflow still have to be handled manually.
  • It seems to increase the administrative burden on staff and doesn’t improve workflow efficiency across departments.
  • There are apparent security risks.
  • Vendors are slow and unresponsive to requests for assistance.
  • Data analytics and reporting capabilities are lacking, inadequate or complex.
  • It does not include features that integrate administrative staff such as financial managers, front desk attendants, and other non-clinical staff.
  • The solution is no longer suitable for your speciality.

How Meddbase Helps Practices Successfully Implement New Systems

Once an organisation decides to invest in our practice management software, we embark on a collaborative partnership, working closely with administrators and clinical staff from the outset to ensure a seamless transition and successful implementation. These are the steps we follow: 
  • We conduct a thorough needs assessment. We begin by conducting an in-depth evaluation of the client's operations to understand their unique requirements and challenges. This evaluation involves engaging with staff members who frequently utilise the practice management solution to gather their information on their experience. We are interested to find out what features matter to them most, identify any redundant functionalities and explore potential areas of improvement. We prioritise open and candid discussions that allow us to tailor our solutions and implementation strategies that align with their specific needs, setting the foundation for a successful transition.
  • We create a customised implementation plan: Based on the needs assessment, we develop a roadmap that outlines the necessary steps and timelines for a successful transition. This plan takes into account factors such as data migration, training requirements and integration with existing systems. We help the organisation make informed decisions on timing, budgetary allocation and help define clear outcomes. At this point, the client decides whether the new system will be deployed instantaneously or whether the roll out will be phased.
  • We communicate clearly and often: Clear and consistent communication is vital throughout the transition process. We keep our clients informed about each stage of the implementation, providing regular updates, addressing concerns and implementing their feedback. We inform the client of any additional offerings we may have and explain our regulatory and compliance strategy. We keep an open channel of communication, and the client can reach out to members of our team to gain a better understanding of our people and values.
  • We offer comprehensive training and support: We provide training workshops to equip our clients with the skills required to maximise the benefits of our practice management software. Although our training sessions are tailored to different user roles within the organisation, general training includes topics like how to update the system, report generation and software interface navigation. Our goal is to ensure that staff members are confident and proficient in utilising the new system.
  • We provide a dedicated support team: Upon onboarding, each client is assigned a dedicated relationship manager who takes the time to familiarise themselves with the intricacies of the client's organisation from the start. This allows them to gain in-depth insights into the client's unique challenges and requirements, enabling them to provide tailored solutions and address any specific needs. Whether it's addressing technical issues, answering queries, or providing guidance, our support team is committed to ensuring a smooth experience and minimising any disruption to daily operations.
  • We believe in continuous evaluation and improvement: Our process is an iterative one; we continuously evaluate and improve our offerings to ensure that they remain at the forefront of industry standards and meet the evolving needs of our clients. We actively seek feedback from our clients, conducting regular check-ins and surveys to gather valuable insights and identify areas for enhancement. 
At Meddbase, we pride ourselves on being the preferred choice for healthcare providers, ensuring that once they join us, they never feel the need to seek other solutions. We consistently rank highly in customer satisfaction and industry benchmarks, reflecting our unwavering focus on meeting the dynamic needs of our clients. As industry leaders, we have successfully spearheaded the seamless transitions of numerous providers into our fold, forging lasting partnerships built on trust, innovation, and mutual success.

Understanding the Difference Between Primary and Secondary Care
June 11, 2023

In the realm of healthcare, understanding the nuances of primary and secondary care is essential. These two categories serve as fundamental pillars in the healthcare system, each playing a distinct role in patient management and treatment. While both are crucial, they serve different purposes and cater to varying levels of healthcare needs. In this blog post, we'll dive into the world of primary and secondary care, shedding light on the key differences that define these essential aspects of healthcare provision.

Primary Care: The First Line of Defense

Primary care forms the foundation of the healthcare system and is often the first point of contact between patients and the medical world. It focuses on providing general healthcare services to individuals and families, emphasising prevention, early intervention, and health maintenance. Primary care providers, including general practitioners (GPs), family physicians, and nurse practitioners, offer comprehensive medical services and serve as a central hub for patients' healthcare needs.

Key Characteristics of Primary Care

Comprehensive Care: Primary care providers offer a wide range of healthcare services, including routine check-ups, vaccinations, and preventive care.

Continuity of Care: Primary care emphasises building long-term relationships with patients, ensuring ongoing and consistent care over time.

First Point of Contact: In most cases, primary care is where patients seek initial medical advice and treatment, making it a crucial gateway to the healthcare system.

Holistic Approach: Primary care providers consider a patient's overall health and well-being, taking into account physical, mental, and emotional aspects.

Health Promotion and Disease Prevention: Primary care focuses on educating patients about healthy lifestyles and preventing illnesses before they become more severe.

Secondary Care: Specialised Expertise

Secondary care, on the other hand, comes into play when patients require specialised medical attention or services beyond the scope of primary care. This level of care is provided by specialists, such as cardiologists, orthopedic surgeons, and dermatologists, who have in-depth knowledge and training in specific medical fields. Secondary care often involves diagnostic and therapeutic services that require specialised equipment and expertise.

Key Characteristics of Secondary Care

Specialised Services: Secondary care offers specialised medical services, such as surgeries, advanced diagnostics, and treatments for specific conditions.

Referral-Based: Patients usually access secondary care through a referral from their primary care provider, as it addresses particular health concerns.

Hospital-Based: Many secondary care services are provided in hospital settings, where specialised equipment and facilities are available.

Complex Cases: Secondary care is equipped to handle complex medical cases that require specialised knowledge and procedures.

Collaborative Approach: Secondary care often involves collaboration between primary care providers and specialists to ensure comprehensive patient care.

Conclusion

In the world of healthcare, primary and secondary care are two vital components, each with its distinct role and focus. Primary care serves as the first line of defense, offering comprehensive and preventive healthcare services, while secondary care provides specialised expertise and treatments for complex medical conditions. Together, these levels of care form a holistic healthcare system that caters to the diverse needs of patients, ensuring their well-being from routine check-ups to specialised treatments. Understanding the difference between primary and secondary care is crucial for both healthcare professionals and patients to navigate the healthcare landscape effectively and make informed decisions about their health.

Exploring the Types of Patient Care: A Comprehensive Guide
June 11, 2023

Patient care lies at the heart of the healthcare system, and it comes in various forms, each tailored to meet specific needs and situations. Understanding the different types of patient care is essential for healthcare providers and patients alike. In this blog post, we will delve into the diverse categories of patient care, shedding light on the nuances that define them and the critical roles they play in ensuring the well-being of individuals in need.

Primary Care: The First Point of Contact

Primary care represents the foundation of healthcare delivery. It is often the initial point of contact between patients and the medical system. Primary care providers, including family doctors, pediatricians, and internists, offer comprehensive healthcare services, focusing on preventive care, routine check-ups, and the management of common medical conditions. This type of care emphasises the importance of building long-term relationships with patients and promoting overall well-being.

Secondary Care: Specialised Expertise

Secondary care steps in when patients require specialised medical attention beyond the scope of primary care. It involves expert healthcare professionals and services such as cardiologists, orthopedic surgeons, and dermatologists. Secondary care often takes place in hospital settings and involves diagnostic procedures, treatments, and surgeries for specific medical conditions. Patients typically access secondary care through referrals from primary care providers.

Tertiary Care: Complex and Advanced Treatment

Tertiary care represents the highest level of specialised care and is usually provided in tertiary hospitals or specialised medical centers. This type of care is reserved for complex and rare medical conditions that require advanced diagnostic techniques, intricate surgical procedures, and specialised medical teams. Tertiary care often includes services like organ transplants, neurosurgery, and oncology treatments.

Quaternary Care: Cutting-Edge and Experimental

Quaternary care is an extension of tertiary care and is characterised by its focus on experimental treatments, cutting-edge medical research, and the most advanced healthcare technologies. This level of care is often associated with academic medical centers and research hospitals. Patients who seek quaternary care are usually those with severe or uncommon medical conditions for which standard treatments have been ineffective.

Conclusion

The spectrum of patient care is both diverse and dynamic, catering to the multifaceted needs of individuals throughout their healthcare journeys. From primary care's preventive focus to secondary care's specialised expertise and tertiary and quaternary care's advanced treatments, each type of patient care plays a vital role in the healthcare ecosystem. Additionally, palliative care serves as a compassionate approach to improving patients' quality of life during challenging times.  By understanding these various types of patient care, healthcare providers and patients can navigate the healthcare landscape more effectively, ensuring that the right level of care is delivered at the right time, ultimately promoting better health outcomes and improved patient experiences.

Ready to Optimise Your Patient Care?

Contact us today to request a demo of Meddbase system and experience how our cutting-edge technology can streamline your healthcare management processes, enhance patient care, and improve overall efficiency.

Is Administrative Burnout Reducing the Level of Care Your Patients Receive?
June 5, 2023

Although the risk of burnout became apparent during the Covid-19 pandemic, so much so that the WHO classified it as an occupational syndrome, it is not a novel phenomenon in the health industry. In fact, burnout research shows that of all occupational groups, physicians and other healthcare workers are one of the most susceptible — 56% of doctors in this study were found to have experienced burnout compared to 28% of the general public. Unfortunately, the effects of burnout are not borne by just the providers alone but might inadvertently affect their workplace relationships or even worse, impact their efficiency when dealing with patients. And in this age of health consumerism, where patients have a vested interest in their healthcare, analysing it with the same critical lens as they would retail, engagement has become king. In this context, it is important to note that losing patients doesn't solely hinge on gross errors; even seemingly minor issues such as prolonged wait times or appointment scheduling difficulties could see you lose patients in droves. Additionally, the toll that burnout takes on physicians has been found to significantly reduce their job satisfaction, leading to quick turnover in practices. One study estimated the attributable cost of physician burnout in the United States and found that organisations were losing up to $7,600 per physician annually due to reduced work hours and the expense of recruiting and training replacements. This is why it is crucial for practices to take a proactive stance on combating burnout before its onset.

How Does Burnout Negatively Impact Your Patient Experience?

As much as your physicians strive to provide the highest quality care, the increasing demands of electronic health records, insurance paperwork, and administrative tasks might occupy too much of their time and prevent them from focusing on patient care. This can lead to feelings of increased stress and burnout that reduce work satisfaction and ultimately impact their ability to connect with their patients. If left unaddressed, burnout poses a serious risk to patient safety, the quality of care they receive, and the overall success of a practice. Here are some of the resultant effects of physician burnout:

Reduced Patient Engagement

Burnout significantly impacts a practice’s ability to properly engage with patients. Exhausted physicians and staff struggle to show empathy, compassion, and active listening that are essential for patient-centred care. Since the modern patient is intuitive and can easily sense detachment, this may make them feel unsupported and uncared for. Over time, the physician-patient relationship is eroded, causing patients to become less engaged and more likely to seek medical attention elsewhere.

Inefficient Communication

Doctors and staff experiencing high stress and fatigue often rush visits, use more technical jargon, and spend less time educating patients and addressing their questions or concerns. Patients leave confused, anxious, and with a lack of understanding about their conditions or next steps. This can lead to lower satisfaction rates and impede successful outcomes.

Increased Errors and Safety Risks

Excessive workloads and mental exhaustion reduce concentration, critical thinking, and decision making. Not only does burnout increase the chances of errors like incorrect diagnoses or adverse drug events, it may also impact your reputation and cause a dip in patient loyalty.

Actionable Solutions to Mitigate Burnout

To prevent administrative burnout and improve patient care, medical practices must implement actionable solutions such as:
  • Provide Adequate Training and Resources

Ensure all staff have proper training, tools, and resources to effectively do their jobs. Provide ongoing education on new technologies, procedures, and policies. When employees feel competent and supported, their stress levels decrease.
  • Promote Work-Life Balance

Encourage staff to take regular vacations and unplug when off work. Limit excessive overtime and avoid contacting employees during non-work hours unless absolutely necessary. Offering flexible schedules or remote work options can help staff achieve better balance.
  • Recognise and Reward Efforts

Provide meaningful recognition and rewards to boost motivation and morale. Thank staff for their contributions and hard work. Consider offering bonuses, extra paid time off or other incentives based on performance and years of service. Feeling valued and appreciated greatly impacts job satisfaction and wellbeing.
  • Review Workloads and Responsibilities

Ensure workloads are evenly distributed and reasonable based on employees’ roles and experience levels. Re-evaluate responsibilities and make adjustments as needed to prevent overload. When staff feel overwhelmed, their quality of work and patient care suffers.
  • Harness Technology to Improve Speed and Efficiency
When practices leverage sophisticated tools and innovative solutions, they can streamline administrative workflows and free their workforce from the burdens of repetitive and time-consuming tasks. By embracing technology-driven solutions, such as automated documentation systems, scheduling platforms, and data analytics, healthcare professionals can reclaim precious time and redirect their focus towards meaningful patient interactions and strategic decision-making. But not just any infrastructure will work. Reports show that using disparate systems is counter-intuitive and may actually contribute to more burnout among physicians and non-clinical staff. Our experts advise that practices use a comprehensive EHR that brings together intuitive tools under one roof.

Electronic Health Records as a Catalyst for Eco-Conscious Healthcare
May 22, 2023

Over the past decade, the Earth has been experiencing exacerbated climatic conditions that can traced back to the relentless increase in greenhouse gas emissions. The consequences of this collective environmental disregard are becoming increasingly evident, with rising global temperatures, melting ice caps, extreme weather events, and shifts in ecosystems. According to WHO, the climate crisis, if unabated, will cause upwards of 250,000 annual deaths between 2030 and 2050. The medical industry, while dedicated to preserving and improving human health, paradoxically stands as one of the leading contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. A report published by Arup in 2019, shows that the healthcare industry’s emissions make up 4% of global CO2 emissions, and up to 10% of national emissions from developed countries. That’s why, in the face of this escalating planetary crisis, it is crucial for healthcare practices to embrace sustainability and actively work towards achieving carbon net zero.  By implementing sustainable practices and embracing innovative solutions, healthcare organisations can make significant strides towards mitigating their environmental impact. The NHS, for instance, has made a commitment to reduce emissions by 80% in 2032 and to achieve net zero by 2040. Although there are many ways your practice can meet your sustainability goals, like reducing direct energy consumption (hospitals have the highest energy intensity of all publicly funded buildings), using ethically sourced, sustainable materials, offsetting carbon emissions and adopting circular practices, one of the most significant adjustments that you can make is adopting the use of Electronic Health Records (EHRs).

What Impact Does The Adoption of EHRs Have on the Environment?

The most documented research on the impact of EHRs on carbon emission showed that for 8.7 million patients, the utilisation of electronic records resulted in the saving of 1,044 tons of paper medical records, avoided 92,000 tons of CO2 emissions by substituting face-to-face patient visits with virtual consultations and curbed 7,000 tons of greenhouse gases by embracing online prescription filling. It also reduced the use of toxic chemicals like silver nitrate by 33.3 tons through the digitization and archiving of X-ray images and other scans.  Although the study also found that there was increased energy consumption by personal computers from the adoption of EHR, the researchers concluded that it has a net environmental impact, akin to removing 300,000 cars off American roads annually. How Embracing EHRs Enhances Your Commitment to Sustainability Practices that genuinely embrace environmental stewardship and commit to sustainability can reap numerous benefits from adopting Electronic Health Records (EHRs), that extend beyond the environmental impacts, such as:
  • Benefit from “Green” Initiatives. In a bid to encourage private and public entities to minimise emissions, governments have been offering incentives to support those that are making an effort to go green. In the UK, the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme will provide over £1 billion in grants up to 2025 to aid in heat decarbonisation and the adoption of energy efficiency measures. You may also be exempt from some taxes if you adopt energy-efficient technology in your business and are producing less waste.
  • Enjoy Interoperability of Medical Records. One of the major benefits of EHRs is increased mobility of medical records across practices. So if you receive a new patient, you will not be bogged down with paperwork as their electronic record can be easily uploaded into your system.
  • Reduce Spending on Energy. EHR systems are much more energy efficient than physical records. Not only do they require less physical space, but they also don't use energy-intensive storage components such as cooling fans to protect stored paper records. In addition, EHRs can be accessed from anywhere, so there is no need to install additional lighting or heating in the areas where paper records are kept.
  • Unlock Efficient Billing and Revenue Cycle Management. An EHR system allows you to track and analyse how your organisation is performing, so you know where improvements can be made in terms of efficiency and sustainability. With the detailed reports generated by an EHR system, you can identify areas where processes may be lagging and make changes accordingly. By consolidating data into a digital format, EHRs also ensure that when records become obsolete, there are fewer papers that need to be recycled or thrown away.
  • Secured Data. With the data security an EHR system provides (passwords, biometrics logins, 2-step authentication factors), you can trust that all of your files will remain safe from potential external threats while also reducing the overhead costs associated with paper storage.
  • Reduced Transportation Costs. With electronic health records you will no longer require patients to come into the office for every appointment. Instead, they can leverage telemedicine to communicate with their doctors wherever they may be. This not only reduces emissions from transportation but also ensures that your patients can access medical attention wherever they may be, especially if they have issues with mobility or live in remote areas.
As your trusted sustainability partner, Meddbase offers you an effective EHR solution that will empower you to embrace environmentally conscious practices. With us, you will enhance your operational efficiency, improve patient care, and contribute to a greener future, with the confidence that we are with you, no matter the climate.

How Technology Can Streamline Discharges and Improve Patient Care Transitions​
May 17, 2023

The transition from hospital to post-acute care can be challenging for patients and their caregivers, especially in instances where they lack a proper support framework. According to the NHS, the highest proportion of emergency readmissions occur within 30 days of the most recent discharge, at an estimated 15.5% between 2021/2022. Out of these events causing readmission, 61% have been found to be preventable. Late last year, it was reported that about 14,000 hospitalised patients across England were unable to be discharged due to a severe shortage of social care. The situation was particularly dire in the South-West, where over 20% of patients were medically fit to leave but remained stuck in hospital due to a lack of available care options. This caused bed occupancy rates to soar to 44% higher than pre-Covid levels, placing a significant burden on hospitals that were already stretched thin. As a result, hospitals struggled to manage both these patients and new admissions, which were also at a record high. This surge in patients highlighted the importance of hospitals being equipped to handle discharges enmasse. To relieve hospitals of the challenges of providing in-house post-acute care, home-based and palliative providers must be empowered with the skills and technology needed to cater to patients post-discharge. This will ensure that the benefits accrued across the health continuum are not reversed during the transition, and that healthcare providers proactively engage their patients, create meaningful connections and effectively help guide successful outcomes. With burgeoning health information technology, such as Electronic Health Records (EHRs), data integration and artificial intelligence, hospitals can now provide integrated patient care management regardless of time and place. These tools can help lower the rate of hospitalisation, improve experiences for those who have been discharged, and aid providers in handling their patient load while optimising the management of their resources.

Managing Transitions in Hospitals with Technology

With the integration of robust data into telehealth systems, caregivers can access patient insights, trends and a wide array of patient information on-demand. This ability to collect, analyse, and present data plays a crucial role in managing the care of patients and informing resource allocation decisions in hospitals. This information also helps caregivers to make enlightened decisions about the most appropriate care setting for a patient and the optimal timing for transition to the setting. With this comprehensive view of a patient's journey, clinicians can easily place patients in environments that are most likely to fast-track their recovery. The use of clinical decision support tools can also guide care transitions by converting data into practical and easy-to-understand insights. Because clinicians can access records regardless of their location, it is possible for them to quickly recognize health trends and identify patients who are ready to be transferred to another care setting or transition out of the hospital. This approach offers complete oversight throughout the entire process.  Since 2010, hospitals in the UK are no longer paid for costs of readmissions occurring within the first 30 days of discharge. If physicians don’t take enough caution to ensure that patients and their caregivers are equipped to handle the transition from the hospital, they bear the brunt should readmission occur. It is therefore imperative that every hospital has an air-tight strategy to prevent transitions in the wrong direction.  At Meddbase, we provide solutions that enable continuous data capture, advanced visualisation, and predictive analytics that empower clinicians to deliver proactive care and guide timely interventions, greatly improving patient outcomes.

Streamlining Out-of-Hospital Transitions

Among the major problems that hinder smooth transitions from hospitals to post-acute care, the one that has been cited most is the retared flow of patient information across practices. According to this source, up to a third of receiving caregivers don’t have access to patient records and test results from hospitals and only 12 to 34 percent of discharge summaries reach after care teams Since healthcare is now siloed, with patients having more than one specialist at a time, it is easy for crucial information to fall through the cracks as the patient moves along the healthcare pipeline. For instance, in one study conducted over a period of 18 months on 1000 patients, 37% were readmitted on the grounds of adverse drug reactions (ADRs), which were found to be, for the most part, preventable. Without proper medical reconciliation (the process of compiling all the medications a patient is taking, including medication names, dosages or strengths, frequencies of use, and routes of administration), the risks of ADRs are exponential. If the receiving carer does not have sufficient knowledge of the drugs their patient is on, they are bound to have difficulties with adherence and overuse, or may even recommend counteractive drugs. Before moving your patient to a palliative care facility, it is therefore essential that you compile their information into a comprehensive report that can be passed on to their subsequent caregivers. And because it can be time-consuming, dealing with bulky and dynamic data, it is advisable to make the switch to EHRs if you haven’t yet.  Meddbase's EHR provides a centralised, interoperable platform that fosters the smooth flow of information across practices. With its easy-to-operate interface, all caregivers can instantly access summarised or in-depth patient information on the go. This ensures that before admission, receiving facilities can assess the patient’s history to confirm that they have the right staff to care for them based on their respective healthcare requirements. 

Integration with Remote Monitoring Technology

A key part of ensuring seamless out-of-hospital transitions is to look out for early signs of deterioration, so that timely interventions can be implemented before they escalate. At present, most physicians monitor their patients through regular in-person follow-ups, which can be difficult to coordinate especially if regular monitoring is required or if the patient is immobile. Switching to remote monitoring however, can bring about significant cost savings without compromising patient outcomes. Wearable technologies have become increasingly popular and can play a vital role in the transition of patients from hospitals to their homes. In recent years, these technologies have become increasingly complex, allowing for the testing of a myriad of parameters. Now, wearables can track and record an array of biometric data, such as oxygen levels, blood pressure, glucose levels, sleep patterns, and even mental health indicators. Some fitness watches even have built-in electrocardiogram (ECG) capabilities. By monitoring real-time vital signs provided by wearable technologies, healthcare givers can track the progress of their patients without the need for in-person appointments. Patient non-compliance has proved to be a thorn in the sides of pharmaceutical companies and healthcare providers. It is estimated that drug non-compliance causes up to 100,000 preventable deaths per year. But with platforms that digitise drug specialty management, abandonment and nonadherence rates have been seen to plummet. Seamless coordination between inpatient, outpatient and home-based care teams using such platforms can help to manage prescriptions and ensure sufficient followup is done on the patients. In cases where the patient or caretaker assumes full responsibility for all post acute patient care without an adequate understanding of post-discharge instructions, more than 30% are likely to wind up back in the hospital less than 6 months after discharge. This is why physicians should ensure that patient literacy levels are high as they administer care, this way, when patients are at home they can handle their treatment adequately. After discharge, hospitals should ensure that patients and caregivers can access patient portals that should, on top of their exhaustive medical records, include informational materials to enhance patient education. Simple interventions like leaflets to explain diagnostic information have been shown to increase patient understanding of their diagnosis from 77% to 100%, and medication literacy from 27% to 71%. The portal provides a forum for patients to track their progress, keep in touch with their practitioner, manage appointments and payments. At the end of the day, these technologies allow for the most important member of the team—the patient—to have more agency over their treatment as they transition away from hospitals.

5 Surefire Strategies to Improve Patient Engagement
May 8, 2023

A significant aspect of a patient's overall health hinges on the extent to which they are involved in the management of their own well-being. Although it's important that healthcare providers expend sufficient effort in appointments, consultations, and surgical procedures, eventually, a considerable proportion of a patient's long-term health outcomes is determined by their personal commitment and participation in their care, often within the confines of their own home. With the rapid rate of digitization across the medical field, healthcare givers need to adopt more advanced ways of ensuring that their patients stay consistently engaged. According to Deloitte, “the pursuit of a seamless, meaningful patient experience is a top priority for all participants in the health care delivery ecosystem, including life sciences companies, health care providers, health care payers, and others.” The modern patient, as studies have shown, wants to be more involved in all aspects of their healthcare, and expects high levels of integration into their entire treatment cycle. This survey, conducted in 2022, found that 61% of patients wanted to be more engaged in their treatment and wanted their healthcare organisations to prioritise patient-centred care to deliver better consumer experiences. In the same study, 25% of respondents said that their doctors don’t understand them, 38% said their doctors don’t listen to their concerns and another 35% don’t get enough face time with their doctors during appointments. These statistics point to the disconnect between the level of care that patients expect and the kind they receive. By improving patient engagement strategies, healthcare providers can deliver superior services and achieve enduring results, while unlocking numerous benefits for their practice.

What Exactly is Patient Engagement?

To better illustrate patient engagement, let's consider a patient named Sarah. Sarah suffers from severe migraines with symptoms like debilitating headache pain, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. Because she doesn't have enough information about her condition, Sarah doesn't know how to properly manage her illness and feels as though her episodes are getting worse, even with her prescribed medication. But when her healthcare provider decides to implement a patient engagement strategy, Sarah's experience with managing her migraines improves dramatically.  She was educated about her condition, including triggers, medication options, potential side effects and encouraged to take a more active role in her treatment. Her healthcare provider emphasised the importance of medication adherence and appointment attendance, providing reminders and discussing potential consequences of missed appointments. Over time, she noticed a significant reduction in the frequency and severity of her migraines, leading to improved quality of life. Sarah’s story exemplifies patient engagement and the impact it has on health outcomes. When patients are involved in decision-making, educated on tools for self-management, and their healthcare providers foster collaborative efforts between them and their physicians, there is a noted increase in patient satisfaction, reduced treatment costs, low recurrence rates, reduced wastage and most importantly, there is a remarkable improvement in the patients’ long-term health and well-being. But the advantages of patient engagement extend beyond patients' health. Healthcare providers can also reap numerous benefits from actively involving patients in their care, including;
  • Enhanced patient loyalty: Patients are more likely to continue seeking care from providers who involve them in decision-making, listen to their concerns, and provide personalised care.
  • Improved patient acquisition: Engaged patients are more likely to recommend their healthcare provider to others, improving patient acquisition. 
  • Enhanced reputation: Providers who prioritise patient engagement are seen as patient-centric and committed to delivering high-quality care.
  • Emphasis on preventative care: By actively involving patients in their care, healthcare providers can prioritise preventive measures such as screenings, vaccinations, and lifestyle modifications, leading to improved health outcomes and reduced healthcare costs in the long run.
  • Higher job fulfilment for physicians: Providers who feel they are making a meaningful difference in their patients' lives and helping them achieve their health goals are likely to experience greater job satisfaction.

Strategies for Patient Engagement

Here are 5 effective strategies you can use to improve patient engagement:
  1. Keep patients informed on the latest health information. It falls on healthcare administrators to provide patients with up-to-date information to help them make enlightened decisions about their health. Consider multiple channels to keep in regular contact with your patients like email, social media, and resources like patient portals, virtual consultations, and patient apps.
  2. Motivate patients to adopt healthy habits. Through incentives, reward programs and positive reinforcement, you can encourage your patients to pick up and stick to health habits that set them on a path towards better health.
  3. Increase access to quality healthcare. By investing in telemedicine, you can provide patients with real-time access to medical professionals and improve continuity of care. You can also provide clear information about insurance policies and simplify procedures where possible to ensure your vulnerable patients are attended to when they need it most. Additionally, integrating automated tools into your workflow will reduce the burden of administrative tasks on your medical staff and allow them ample time with your patients.
  4. Track and Measure Patient Engagement Metrics. Tracking patient engagement metrics is a great way to measure the effectiveness of your initiatives and ensure they are producing desired outcomes. First, you should identify specific KPIs, such as the number of patients returning for follow-up visits, patient ratings of providers, or the number of satisfied patients.These parameters will allow you to measure the success of patient engagement efforts. Tracking patient satisfaction through surveys and analytical tools can also help you identify gaps in patient care.

Using Technology to Implement your Patient Engagement Strategy

There are several alternatives that are the disposal of healthcare administrators to streamline their patient engagement. Online patient management systems, like the one provided by Meddbase, offers a centralised solution to meet all your patient engagement needs. Our platform includes:

Online Scheduling

By using an online portal for scheduling appointments, healthcare providers make it easier for patients to book appointments at their convenience without the need for phone calls or paperwork.

Instant Messaging

Sending emails or text messages reminding patients about upcoming appointments can help ensure that they have time to plan and make it in on time. This reduces the number of missed appointments and no-shows. Our management platform also assists in patient education efforts. Using highly accessible patient data, you can send intuitive, engaging materials and resources that are personalised to a patient’s condition. 

Telehealth

Our telehealth service has enabled more convenient access to care in rural and underserved areas. Our clients can now connect with patients in areas that experience a shortage or a lack of specialists.   At Meddbase, we provide a unified practice management platform that gathers all patient data and communication in one place, to ensure care plan compliance. Providers that use our platforms report high connectivity with their patients that helps keep them on track towards recovery.  

Why Every Business Needs an Occupational Health Management System in 2023
May 6, 2023

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic bringing attention to the importance of prioritising employee well-being, only a small increase has been seen in the number of companies in the UK that have implemented Occupational Health Management Systems (OHMS) into their operations 4 years on. In fact, this number is so dismal that according to a telephone survey conducted on 4,950 employers in 2022, only 3% were found to provide comprehensive occupational health services to their employees.  Surprisingly, what the survey referred to as comprehensive OHMS were the basic components that any functional OHMS should possess, such as hazard identification, risk management, provision of information modifying work activities, providing training on occupational health-related issues, measuring workplace hazards, and monitoring trends in health. Given the importance of occupational health management, it is alarming that such a low number of companies have adopted even the basics of OHMS. Many business owners are still on the fence about implementing an OHMS, which can be attributed to their lack of awareness of the numerous benefits it can have for them. In today's dynamic world, the health and safety of employees is of the utmost importance, and an OHMS can help businesses achieve this.  The purpose of this article is to highlight the benefits of OHMS and demonstrate how it can help businesses to thrive in the face of unpredictability.

Benefits of Implementing an Occupational Health Management System

Implementing an OHMS can provide a wide range of benefits for businesses across the board. Some of the key benefits of implementing an OHMS include:

Improved Employee Health and Well-being

One of the most significant benefits of an OHMS is the potential to improve employee health and well-being. By prioritising health, businesses can boost job satisfaction, morale, and productivity. OHMS can provide employees with access to health and wellness programs, screenings, and counselling, which can have a positive impact on their overall well-being, making them better suited to carry out their assignments. This research published in 2020 showed that workers’ health programs had the greatest positive influence on retention and job satisfaction. By offering such services, businesses can help their employees stay healthy, reducing the likelihood of illnesses or injuries that could negatively impact their performance or lead to time off work. Ultimately, prioritising employee health and well-being through an OHMS shows that businesses value their employees and care about their well-being, making them feel more invested in their work. 

Compliance with Regulatory Requirements

Another key benefit of OHMS is that it can help businesses comply with regulatory requirements. This includes health and safety legislation as well as industry-specific regulations set by bodies like HSE.  By implementing an OHMS, businesses can meet all relevant requirements, hence avoiding any potential fines or legal issues. OHMS can also help businesses stay up to date with changes to ensure that their operations remain in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations. This way, businesses avoid any negative consequences associated with non-compliance.  In the case of an eventuality, having an OHMS in place demonstrates an organisation's commitment to employee well-being, which can greatly enhance its public image.

Continuous Improvement and Innovation

A company that implements OHMS encourages a culture of continuous improvement. By regularly monitoring and evaluating workplace health and safety practices, policies, and training, employers and employees are constantly seeking ways to enhance and improve their operations to ensure they stay up-to-date with best practices and industry standards. This can lead to increased innovation outside of occupational health, as a culture of improvement permeates throughout the organisation. As a result, the workplace becomes better suited to discovering and adopting new work methods in general, leading to greater efficiency in all aspects of the business. OHMS can thus serve as a catalyst for positive change in the workplace, benefiting the company as a whole.

Cost Savings and Improved Financial Performance

Having an OHMS in place can result in substantial cost savings for businesses. By preventing workplace accidents and injuries, employers can decrease expenses related to medical treatment, workers' compensation claims, and legal fees. For instance, Johnson & Johnson's leaders estimate that their wellness programs have saved the company $250 million on health care costs over the past decade. Another study showed a 9.4% drop in injury claims and a 26% average savings on workers' compensation costs after a Cal/OSHA inspection, which points to the benefits of implementing safety and health programs. Additionally, lower absenteeism and reduced turnover rates from improved employee welfare services can result in recruitment and training cost savings.

Improved Risk Management

Businesses that have a functional OHMS can identify potential risks to employee health and safety and take steps to mitigate or eliminate them before incidents occur. This includes conducting regular risk assessments and implementing appropriate controls to reduce the likelihood of workplace accidents and injuries. By proactively managing risks, businesses can minimise the likelihood of disruptions to their operations and reduce their liability in the event of accidents. This can contribute to a safer and more productive workplace environment.

Data-driven Decision Making

Occupational Health Management Systems can facilitate judicious decision-making in the workplace, encouraging a more informed approach to risk management. By leveraging OHMS data, stakeholders can identify important risk factors, allowing for more deliberate, and well-considered decisions to be made. OHMS also provides a structured and systematic framework for analysing and evaluating occupational health risks, thereby encouraging strategic decision-making. Employing OHMS also promotes a proactive culture of anticipatory risk management, enabling organisations to react swiftly and decisively to potential threats, mitigating risks, and reducing the likelihood of unforeseen incidents.

Enhanced Workplace Safety Culture

By providing a platform for managing and tracking employee health data, OHMS helps create a safer working environment for employees. With easy access to safety data and hazard identification tools, employees become more aware of potential risks and take proactive measures to mitigate them. A safety culture that emphasises employee well-being and encourages employees to speak up about safety concerns also leads to increased job satisfaction and morale, improving the organisation's overall performance. OHMS provides an effective way to establish a safety culture by enabling the collection and analysis of safety data, providing insights into workplace hazards, and facilitating the creation of safety programs and training initiatives. By investing in OHMS, organisations can foster a culture of safety and improve the health and well-being of their workforce, while also reducing the risk of costly workplace accidents and injuries.

Getting Started with an Occupational Health Management System

The first step to establishing a workplace health and safety program is to engage an expert in the field. With their guidance, you can pinpoint risks in your operations and develop a tailored system that addresses your specific requirements.  To effectively manage your program, your expert will propose various solutions to assist you in implementing and overseeing your OHMS. These solutions help businesses streamline crucial processes and procedures, keep track of incident reports, and continuously evaluate the effectiveness of their OHMS. One of the primary technologies in the market currently is Occupational Health and Safety Management Software. This software offers an all-inclusive platform for managing employee health and safety, enabling businesses to track employee data including medical records, incident reporting, risk assessments, and compliance requirements, to support workplace safety and regulatory adherence. At Meddbase, we have vast experience with working with businesses using our software to improve the safety of their workplaces. If you want more information about how you can realise these benefits for your business, or are unsure about how to create an employee health program that is suitable for you, claim your free consultation here.

A Comprehensive Guide to Choosing an Occupational Health Management System That Works
May 5, 2023

When it comes to managing the health and safety of your workforce, choosing the right occupational health management system is crucial. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to determine which system will best fit the needs of your organisation. In this article, we present a comprehensive guide to choosing an occupational health management system, by narrowing down on the major features you need to be on the lookout for. Whether you are starting from scratch or considering a new system, this guide will help you make an informed decision that will facilitate your compliance with regulations while promoting the overall health outcomes of your employees. 

Understand the Elements of Occupational Health and Safety

An OHMS is designed to help employers meet their obligations in regards to their employees' health and safety.  To understand what features you should look for in one, it's important to first familiarise yourself with the components of occupational health and safety:
  • Risk assessment: assessing and monitoring risks in the workplace
  • Risk management: developing plans to mitigate or eliminate risks
  • Health surveillance: monitoring employee health related to job activities
  • Training: ensuring that employees have the necessary skills and knowledge
  • Employee consultation: creating channels through which employees can communicate issues or concerns
  • Incident identification, recording, investigation, and reporting.
These elements help employers create an environment where dangers in the workplace are minimised. Read more about them here.

Explore the Features of an Occupational Healthcare Management System

When looking for an OHM system for your organisation, there are several features that you will want to explore. First, look for a system that provides automated workflow capabilities. This means that the system should be able to process claims quickly and accurately while also providing real-time data updates. Automation will streamline your administrative processes and reduce the time spent on manual paper-based tasks. Next, consider whether or not a system offers electronic signature capabilities. This feature can help save time, as well as eliminate errors associated with manual document processing. Additionally, look for a system that allows users to securely store documents in the cloud as this will help ensure that sensitive medical records remain confidential and secure at all times. Finally, make sure that any system you are considering has comprehensive reporting capabilities. This should include an intuitive dashboard where administrators can easily access real-time data about claims processing, employee benefit usage, cost analysis and more. Reports should also be customizable so that administrators can tailor them to meet their specific needs and goals.

Analyse Occupational Risk and Conduct Assessments

Identifying and managing workplace risks is essential to having a safe and healthy work environment. If your OMHS comes with this feature, you can quickly analyse occupational risks in your workplace to better understand the potential danger posed by certain tasks, environments, or equipment. An effective OHMS should allow you to:
  • Monitor employee health data, such as results from medical screenings and tests.
  • Create individualised metrics for each employee to zero in on areas that need improvement.
  • Generate real-time safety reports to identify areas of concern for employers.
  • Develop an action plan to reduce risk in the workplace by taking proactive steps.

Monitor Regulatory Compliance for Occupational Health and Safety

Any OH management system you choose must be up to date with the latest regulatory requirements. This means that your system must be able to keep track of any changes in regulations, labour laws, and other rules that may impact the functionality of your operations. Some features to look for include:
  • Automated compliance monitoring: Regular monitoring of regulations to help ensure your company is always compliant.
  • Compliance management tools and reporting: Tools that allow you to manage your compliance strategies and easily create reports to use in audits and other regulatory reviews.
  • Document library: A database of updated documents related to occupational health and safety regulations, including employee training materials and safety protocols.
  • Electronic signatures: The ability to electronically sign documents which eliminates the need for paper filing systems.

Documentation and Record Keeping for Healthcare Management

The ability to store and manage patient information is an essential part of any OHMS. Your system should have the capability to store various types of documents, including medical records, injury reports, and other related documents. The system should also support forms that are compliant with local and national regulations, helping to streamline the process of filing expenses and claims. Here are some features that you should look for:
  1. Flexible data storage – The system should store different kinds of information, as well as store different formats such as PDFs, images, audio files, and videos.
  2. Flexible access control – Only authorised people should have access to sensitive information.
  3. Automated record-keeping – This streamlines the entire process by performing tasks such as logging dates of service and tracking patient histories automatically so that healthcare professionals can focus on providing quality care.
  4. Audit trails – These enable you to track who has accessed certain records so that any potential security breaches can be quickly identified and rectified.
  5. Regulatory compliance – Look for a system that is compliant with relevant laws so that you don’t run into any legal issues down the line.

Implementing an Effective Process for Healthcare Management

Finding and implementing an effective process for healthcare management is a key part of managing your occupational health program. An occupational healthcare management system should include features to help streamline the process and ensure compliance with industry regulations. Here are some features to look out for:

Automated Visitor Check-In

Having an automated visitor check-in system in place can help you keep track of who has entered your workplace, when they arrived, and what their specific health status is. This allows you to quickly and easily identify which visitors need additional screening or other health services, ensuring that no one falls through the cracks.

Real-Time Alerts and Reporting

An occupational healthcare management system should also provide real-time alerts and reporting capabilities. This helps you stay on top of any issues that arise with employees or visitors, quickly identifying any potential health risks or compliance problems.

Accessibility from Any Device

Finally, look for a system that allows for easy access from any device, including smartphones, tablets and laptops. With this kind of flexibility, your team can access the information they need no matter where they are, ensuring a smoother workflow and faster response times to potential issues. In conclusion, selecting the right occupational health management system is key in promoting employee health and reducing healthcare costs in your business. Therefore, before making your decision, it is essential that you shop widely and consider various OHM providers to find the system that best meets your requirements. At Meddbase, you'll get a free consultation session with our in-house experts to identify your business’ needs, to enable them to customise a system that prioritises your requirements. To learn more about our comprehensive Occupational Health Management Software, and how it can protect you and your employees click here.

Embrace Online Booking for a Smarter, More Effective Workflow for Your Practice
April 24, 2023

According to research conducted by Zippia and Accenture, nearly two-thirds of patients book medical appointments online, and more than half would prefer to receive appointment reminders via email or text message.  While this form of scheduling might not be appropriate for every patient, especially at the onset of their relationship with you, it is not surprising that a big chunk of them would prefer to make appointments this way, given the convenience and speed that it offers. This holds even more true for Millennials and Gen-z demographics who are averse to phone calls to the point of anxiety; 83% of them in the UK prefer booking online. So in the next coming years, we expect e-bookings to gain more traction. For your practice, not having an online scheduling system is tantamount to missing out on potential clients. It has been reported that wellness spas, which share similarities with medical practices in terms of appointment scheduling, could lose up to 46% of bookings if they do not offer online booking options. This translates to a substantial loss in revenue and missed opportunities for practices that have yet to adapt to the growing trend.

Why is Traditional Scheduling no longer right for your Practice?

If you’ve relied on traditional methods of appointment scheduling, you’re probably all too familiar with their challenges; they’re fallible, inefficient, labour-intensive and often frustrating. Using paper scheduling usually involves numerous phone calls to continually manage new appointments, reschedules, cancellations and to prevent double-booking patients for the same time slot. This not only demands constant manual intervention but also significantly impedes the operational efficiency of the organisation. Your staff, who could be better utilised for other essential tasks within the practice, are often bogged down with scheduling, to ensure the practice runs smoothly. Oftentimes though, inexorable errors crop up and important information can be overlooked, and a failure to update the system with real-time changes – such as cancellations or reschedules– can lead to grave mix-ups. These errors can undermine the efficiency and dependability of your practice, leading to a loss of trust from your patients.

Online Appointment Scheduling Systems

The difficulties of traditional appointment scheduling are considerable, with mistakes and inefficiencies making the process cumbersome and onerous. Online booking, on the other hand, offers solutions by using modern technology to provide greater convenience, efficiency, and flexibility. This can greatly enhance the patient experience and improve treatment outcomes.  As we explore the advantages of online booking, it becomes clear that they have the potential to transform healthcare delivery and change the way patients interact with their providers.

Online Booking Systems Offer Convenience

Convenience is a key factor in any patient's decision to book an appointment. As more and more medical practices move online, the convenience factor has become increasingly important. Online booking provides a level of convenience that phone reservations or walk-ins simply cannot match. There are several factors that contribute to this convenience, including:
  1. Accessibility: Online booking provides patients with 24/7 availability to book appointments, making it much easier for patients with busy schedules to make an appointment. With just a few clicks, patients can quickly and easily schedule appointments at any time of the day or night. For those who don’t speak the prevalent language, your system could be mutli-lingual to cater to a diverse audience.
  2. Speed: Online booking is faster than traditional phone calls. Patients can schedule appointments quickly, eliminating the need to navigate a phone menu or wait on hold. This saves time for both patients and staff, and helps to reduce wait times for all patients.
  3. Flexibility: Online booking allows patients to easily reschedule or cancel their appointments online, providing them greater control over their treatment process. This is especially valuable for patients with hectic schedules or those who travel frequently.
  4. Ease of decision making: With online booking, patients can take their time to review their schedules and select the most convenient appointment time for them, eliminating the chances of selection of an inconvenient  time slot.

Online Scheduling Empowers Patients

Online appointment scheduling not only offers convenience but also empowers patients in several ways:
  1. Caters to different communication preferences. Introverts and those who prefer not to engage in phone conversations may find online booking systems more appealing. Additionally, tech-savvy patients who prefer digital solutions will appreciate the option to book appointments online.
  2. Reduces social discomfort and anxiety. Some patients may experience anxiety or discomfort when speaking on the phone, especially when discussing personal health matters. Online booking systems remove this barrier, allowing patients to schedule appointments without the potential stress of a phone call.

Online Booking Streamlines Operations for your Practice

Implementing an online booking system can also lead to significant improvements in practice operations:

Reduced administrative workload

By offering online appointment scheduling, healthcare providers can reduce the number of phone calls their staff members need to manage. This frees up time for staff to focus on other tasks and helps create a more efficient work environment. Moreover, online booking systems often include automated appointment confirmations and reminders, further reducing repetitive tasks.  More than half of the doctors in this survey claimed that the use of mobile phones in their practice expedited decision making in administrative tasks, so it's only natural that this usage will extend to scheduling to unlock the same advantages.

Improved appointment management

Online booking systems provide real-time updates on appointment availability, which helps reduce the risk of double bookings and scheduling conflicts. This leads to a smoother appointment process for you and your patients. Also, the information used for appointment scheduling, such as email address and phone numbers, can be used to support your e-marketing efforts, bringing in more visits by new and existing patients. Patient information collected on online booking portals is also likely to be up-to-date compared to the information provided on paper during the initial registration.

Increased client base from after-hours booking

According to this source 34% of appointments that are scheduled online are done so after the office is closed. So if your business does not support 24/7 scheduling, you could be missing out on potential business.

Enhanced privacy management

When patients book appointments online, they can complete any necessary online forms regarding their reasons for the visit and medical history. On the other hand, if a receptionist handles phone bookings, patients might share sensitive medical information with the receptionist instead of the practitioner, which could raise privacy concerns. Online booking systems help to address and mitigate such privacy issues, ensuring that sensitive information is only disclosed to the appropriate professional.

Increased Online Payment and Reduced Cancellations

Allowing patients to book and pay for appointments online can reduce the likelihood of missed appointments and can ensure your schedules remain full. Additionally, offering discounts on consultation fees or a free follow-up consultation can incentivize patients to utilise online appointment scheduling services. With online scheduling systems providing a safe and secure payment platform, patients are more comfortable than ever making payments digitally. By integrating an online booking system into your practice's workflow, you not only cater to the evolving demands of modern healthcare consumers, but also unlock numerous benefits such as increased efficiency, reduced no-shows (an average of 15.3% of missed appointments is reported in the UK), and the ability to attract and retain patients. 

Choose our All-in-one Practice Management Suite

At Meddbase, we offer a comprehensive practice management solution that includes an online scheduling feature. Instead of using a separate vendor for appointment bookings, practices can benefit from the seamless integration of Meddbase's suite of features, which include patient portals, electronic prescribing, report and auditing, telemedicine, and more.  By using a unified platform, your practice can streamline operations, reduce administrative burden, and improve the overall patient experience.

Occupational Healthcare Management Systems and Employee Productivity: How They’re Connected
March 30, 2023

One of the most remarkable benefits that businesses reap from the implementation of an Occupational Health Management System (OHMS) is a significant improvement in employee productivity. According to the CDC, companies that support workplace health have a greater percentage of employees at work every day, an aspect that cascades into the employees’ personal life, translating to less time spent away from work caring for sick loved ones. Additionally, ILO reports that SMEs that implement OHM systems are more successful at warding off presenteeism, a condition that sees businesses lose productivity when employees are not fully functioning in the workplace because of an illness or injury. Over the past few years, there has been a steady decline in worker productivity across the globe. In the UK, it is reported that since the economic downturn of 2008, productivity levels have never recovered. In the first quarter of 2019 for instance, there was a 0.2% decline of productivity per hour compared to the last quarter of 2018. Although several reasons can be attributed to this dwindling performance, one of the leading causes is the ineffective management of the health, safety and well-being of employees. It is therefore necessary for employers and EHS managers to ensure that they not only have an OHMS in place, but that it is harnessed to improve productivity.

Productivity and Workplace Health: What is the link?

In recently published results, the HSE reported that over 1.8 million workers in Great Britain suffered a workplace related illness in the 2021/2022 period. From the results, the HSE noted that over half of those illnesses were related to mental health, a number that has been on the rise post-pandemic. It was also estimated that around 37 million work days were lost in the UK in the same 2021/2022 period, translating in loses to the tune of£18.8 billion. But the connection between occupational healthcare management systems and employee productivity goes beyond missed work days. While providing workers with access to health services, such as preventative care or ergonomic programs, leads to healthier employees who are better equipped to be productive, the major benefits that stems from OHMS aren’t always apparent. 

How does occupational health compliance impact productivity?

Studies have shown that providing occupational healthcare in the workplace yields numerous benefits on productivity including:

Increased job satisfaction leading to higher retention rates 

According to Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), organisations with strong wellness programs, which may include the implementation of workplace health management systems, experienced an average employee retention rate of 91%. This is compared to an average retention rate of 68% among organisations with weak or no wellness programs.

Fewer work-related injuries and illnesses

By implementing occupational health and management systems, employers can effectively prevent the onset of disease, stop the escalation of existing ones and help employees adopt a healthier lifestyle for longevity. This results in fewer absent days.

Improved worker morale and engagement 

According to a survey conducted in 2016, a survey found out that 1 in 3 employees felt that their employer prioritised output over their well being, resulting in reduced morale. Reduced morale can have a negative impact on productivity in several ways. For instance, employees who are disengaged are more likely to report late to work, cause delays in workflows and are less creative.

Increased employee productivity due to less stress and greater job security

The increased rate of mental health illnesses in the workplace has a significant impact on productivity, rivalling infectious and terminal illnesses and musculoskeletal injuries in the number of claims made per year. The HSE report  showed that there were an estimated 914,000 cases of work-related stress, depression, or anxiety in 2021/22. Additionally, mental health-related issues are reported to be the leading cause of presenteeism

How to Implement Occupational Health Management Systems to Boost Productivity

By providing employees with access to timely medical care and health advice, managers can help them stay more productive on the job.  Here’s how you can implement your OMH System to improve workplace productivity:
  • Provide timely medical care

When employees are taken ill at work, quick access to a trusted medical provider is essential. OHMS provides businesses with a network of trusted medical providers who understand their occupational health needs and can provide timely responses. This ensures that employees have access to appropriate medical care when they need it most, reducing time spent off the job due to illness or injury.
  • Offer education and advice

OHM systems offer education and advice for employers, helping them create and maintain a culture of health in the workplace. This includes health screenings for potential candidates and onboarding support for new staff members. By offering regular health checks, education sessions, and stress management exercises, organisations can help their personnel stay healthy—both physically and mentally—for maximum productivity. To ensure that employees are able to get the full benefit of their healthcare plans, employers must make sure that their occupational healthcare management systems are up-to-date and functioning properly. These systems include measures such as:
  • Regular medical checkups
  • Workplace policies that promote healthy habits
  • Access to mental health services
  • Employee wellness programs
As the link between productivity and workplace health management becomes more apparent, it is evident that organisations that prioritise employee health and wellbeing can reap significant benefits.  By keeping up with the trends emerging in OHMS and utilising the latest technologies and techniques in occupational healthcare management, companies can ensure that their employees are healthy, happy, and stay productive for longer.

Why Ignoring Compliance in Occupational Health Management Can Cost You More Than Just Money
March 29, 2023

Although occupational health management (OHM) is a critical component of workplace safety, many businesses, especially SMEs have a difficult time keeping abreast with the laws and regulations that govern it. This does not come without repercussions though. In 2020 for instance, the National Safety Council estimated that companies paid upwards of 150 billion in employee compensation for workplace related injuries alone. However, ignoring compliance in OHM can have more than just financial implications.  While most people initially prioritise compliance for the potential savings from financial losses (which is fair given the importance of finances in running a business), it is necessary to recognize that the non-monetary benefits of compliance may be even more salient. To illustrate just how important compliance is, the UN reports that 7,500 people die daily from non-compliance with occupational safety and health standards. In this blog post, we'll delve into the significance of adhering to occupational health management standards, highlighting the potential hazards associated with non-compliance. We'll also discuss strategies for achieving and maintaining these standards, and provide practical tips for implementing policies and procedures that work. By the end of this blog, you'll have a deeper appreciation for the crucial role that compliance plays in occupational health management, and gain actionable insights for cultivating a safe and compliant workplace. The Risks Of Non-Compliance in OHM The potential consequences of non-compliance can be severe. That’s why it's essential for businesses to understand the risks associated with it. Below are some of the negative outcomes that may arise from ignoring OHM standards: Legal Action This is one of the most significant risks that businesses face when they are non-compliant. Regulatory agencies like OSHA and HSE have the power to levy fines and penalties for non-compliance and, in severe cases, even force a business to shut down.  Apart from regulatory action, businesses can also be sued by employees who have sustained injuries due to non-compliance. Such lawsuits can lead to significant financial losses, including legal fees, compensatory damages, and punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the business for its negligence, and can be substantial, depending on the severity of the violation and the resulting injury. In extreme cases of willful disregard or gross negligence, business owners can even face criminal charges and imprisonment. It is important to note that in the UK, cases that are taken forward by the HSE have an overwhelmingly high success rate; up to 94%. In some of these cases, those at the top —the executive management— are held liable, as it is their responsibility to ensure the safety of the people under their employ. As a business owner therefore, you should be at the forefront of championing safety practices in your business. Reputational Damage Non-adherence to safety regulation can have a detrimental impact on a company's reputation. Businesses that fail to comply with can be perceived as irresponsible, resulting in a loss of goodwill from both employees and clients. Additionally, this negative publicity can spread quickly through social media and other channels, leading to a tarnished reputation that the business may struggle to recover from. Unnecessary endangerment of lives According to the ILO, every 15 seconds, a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease, which equates to over 2.8 million worldwide deaths per year. When businesses prioritise profit over safety, they put their employees at risk of injuries that may have life-altering consequences. In the event of death, families are irreparably affected by the loss and might seek heavy compensation. Over the past few years the costs of payouts have been increasing, with the highest ever costing £5 million. According to the EHS Today, as of February 2016, new sentencing guidelines could see companies pay over £10 million in costs for the most serious health and safety violations, and more than £20 million for corporate manslaughter convictions. How Can You Stay Compliant to OHM Standards? Many of the risks we’ve discussed can be avoided if employers and their workers can take issues of health and safety in the workplace with the gravitas it requires. To stay compliant, our team of experts here at Meddbase suggests that you:
  1. Conduct a thorough analysis of the workplace to identify potential hazards and assess the risk associated with each one. This will help determine the necessary precautions to be taken.
  2. Develop and implement an occupational health and safety policy. This policy should outline the company's commitment to providing a safe and healthy work environment and include clear procedures for identifying, reporting, and addressing hazards.
  3. Provide comprehensive training to all employees on the hazards relevant to their roles.
  4. Regularly inspect and maintain equipment to ensure it is safe to use and in good working condition.
  5. Keep accurate records of any incidents or accidents that occur in the workplace and maintain documentation of compliance efforts. Use occupational health software.
  6. Conduct regular safety audits to identify potential hazards and address any issues that arise.
  7. Provide appropriate PPE to employees and ensure they are properly trained on its use.
  8. Encourage employees to report any hazards or safety concerns they identify in the workplace.
  9. Regularly monitor compliance with occupational health and safety policies and procedures to ensure they are being followed.
  10. Continuously improve occupational health and safety practices by incorporating feedback from employees, conducting regular reviews of policies and procedures, and staying up-to-date on industry best practices and regulatory requirements.
The Cost of Fines Is Higher Than of Compliance Investing and adhering to an occupational health management system may seem like a financial burden for businesses, but in reality, the cost of non-compliance can far outweigh the cost of maintaining a safe and healthy work environment. According to a study conducted in the UK in 2016, SMEs that invested in health and safety avoided fines £75,000 higher than the cost of complying with regulatory standards. The potential costs of fines, penalties, and legal fees resulting from non-compliance can be devastating to a business's finances, not to mention cause a decline in productivity and negatively impact its image. On the other hand, investing in OHMS not only ensures that you avoid financial losses, it also improves output from employees, boosts morale and can even open up avenues for new investments.

Protecting Your Workforce: The Importance of Occupational Healthcare Management Systems for Small Businesses
March 27, 2023

As small businesses adapt to changing market conditions, there has been an increasing need for them to invest in the health and safety of their employees. With the rise of remote and hybrid work, and the evolving contexts of wellbeing in the workplace, small businesses are faced with unique challenges in managing the health and safety of their employees. In 2021/2022, there were more than half a million employees involved in non-fatal workplace injuries in the UK, a majority which occurred in small businesses, seeing as they make 99.2% of all private businesses, and account for three fifths of the total employment in the country. It is also well documented that workers in small businesses carry a higher risk for accidents and occupational diseases. This highlights the need for business owners to prioritise the safety and well-being of their employees. By investing in an Occupational Health Management System (OHMS), SMEs take the first step in protecting their most important asset: their people. In the following sections, we will explore the benefits of OHMS for small businesses in detail and provide practical tips for implementing an effective program. Why is Occupational Healthcare Management Essential for Small Businesses? Having an employee safety protection program is crucial for any business, regardless of its size. For small businesses however, there are some bottlenecks that make it harder for them to invest, compared to their medium and large enterprise counterparts.  Often, small businesses have scant financial and human resources to dedicate to OHM programs. As a result, they may struggle to acquire the necessary equipment, sponsor training sessions, and employ personnel needed to create a comprehensive program. Compliance with regulations can also be a challenge. While they are subject to the same OHM regulations as larger organisations, they may lack the capacity to stay up-to-date with changing requirements. High turnover rates also make it difficult to maintain a consistent OHM program, as it can lead to gaps in training and knowledge, increasing the risk of workplace accidents and injuries. But this isn’t to say that it is impossible for SMEs to implement an effective OMHS. In fact, at Meddbase, we have had high success rates with small businesses that started their employee health management journey with us. Once the initial kinks are worked out, and the business owners and core staff are fully onboard, there are numerous benefits to be experienced. Here is why it pays to invest in an occupational health management system:
  • It reduces sickness absenteeism and associated costs, such as disability coverage and hiring temporary staff.
  • It creates a safer work environment. In addition to reducing accidents, it can also help prevent the spread of diseases both inside and outside the workplace, minimising downtime.
  • OHMS can provide legal protection against any potential liability claims by employees.
  • It gives employers insight into the overall health of their workforce, allowing them to make informed decisions regarding employee performance and wellbeing.
  • It encourages workers to become more engaged with their work, since they know that their safety is a priority.
  • It helps employers comply with any relevant occupational healthcare regulations at local and national levels.
In addition to these benefits, investing in OHM programs also demonstrates the company’s commitment to employee safety and health, which can help attract and retain customers who value ethical business practices.

Making the Transition to OHMS: Tips and Tricks

Starting out with an OHMS can seem daunting to many small business owners. While at first it could appear to be an expensive undertaking, the long-term benefits outweigh the initial strains by far. So what should you keep in mind when making the transition to OHMS?
  1. Establish a timeline - An organised timeline will help you stay on track and ensure that all aspects of the transition are completed in a timely manner.
  2. Set clear objectives: Establish specific goals and objectives for how you want the OHMS system to be used in your business before starting implementation and training. This will make it easier to track progress and measure success over time.
  3. Choose the right platform - Choosing the right platform is critical for the success of the OHMS, so make sure to research various options before deciding which one will work best for your business’s needs. We talk more about the components of an effective OMHS here and explain what you should be on the lookout for when shopping for a solution.
  4. Create an employee engagement plan - This is essential for any successful OHMS program, as it increases buy-in from employees, raises their understanding of workplace safety regulations, and ensures that everyone is included in making workplace safety decisions.
  5. Create a robust onboarding process: A well-thought-out onboarding process will help ensure that the OHMS system is used correctly and consistently across the business.
  6. Monitor usage - Once you have implemented your OHMS program, make sure to keep track of its usage (by both employees and managers) in order to ensure its success over time.
  7. Leverage data - Use the data provided by your system to optimise operations and health outcomes over time.
Solutions Available in the Market for Small Businesses Like other businesses, SMEs need solutions that are tailored to fit their budgets, timelines and objectives. Fortunately, there are a wide range of occupational health management solutions available in the market that can help owners protect their employees while complying with relevant regulations. Meddbase's OHM software, for instance, is an ideal solution for small businesses looking to streamline their workplace health and management processes. The software monitors employee health and provides powerful reporting tools to ensure accurate records are kept. It also allows businesses to track employee training and adherence to safety regulations – all through an accessible platform. The software provides access to comprehensive occupational health services that can be incorporated to meet the individual needs of each business – from pre-employment questionnaires to health screenings. This helps small businesses provide the necessary healthcare for their employees in a timely and cost-effective way. To ensure the safety of your workforce today and well into the future, take the proactive approach by investing in an OHMS now.

5 Components of an Effective Occupational Health and Safety Management System
March 24, 2023

A well-designed occupational health and safety management system is essential to ensuring the safety of employees and minimising the financial and legal liabilities that may stem from work-place related injuries. According to a study by OSHA, businesses that implemented an occupational health and safety management system saw a 20-40% reduction in the number of workplace illnesses and diseases, and were more adept at mitigating incidents when they occurred. However, OHM systems are multifaceted and involve a myriad of procedures, processes and policies to promote a safe and healthy work environment. After analysing our clients at Meddbase and their approaches towards occupational health management systems, we can conclude that a uniform solution does not apply to everyone. In this article, we will explore some of the essential elements of occupational health and safety management systems and how they can help organisations create a safer, more efficient workplace. By implementing these basic components effectively, businesses can mitigate risks, improve employee morale, increase productivity, among other crucial benefits.

Designing a Comprehensive OHM System

An effective OHM system should be tailored to an organisation's specific activities, processes, culture and environment. That being said, there are some key facets that should underpin any well designed OHMS. These include:

Risk Assessment

Conducting a thorough risk assessment is the first step to identifying potential hazards in the workplace. All stakeholders should be involved at this stage to ensure that the assessment is thorough and all-encompassing, and that it takes into account the risks that may be inherent to those with special needs. There are two main types of risk identification and assessment:
  • Traditional approach, which involves manually identifying hazards within the workplace, assessing their potential risks, and developing strategies to manage them.
  • Modern approach, which uses workplace health and safety software that includes sophisticated features such as predictive analytics that may help to identify obscure hazards. It can also provide real-time intelligence on the severity of a hazard, alerting businesses immediately if an event occurs.

Policies and Procedures

Establishing an industry-compliant safety strategy ensures that businesses operate under the guidance of set laws, and that their employees are always protected from hazardous conditions, supplied with appropriate protective equipment and receive training in their line of work. In addition to protecting employees, these policies may also include provisions to safeguard customers and communities near the workplace. In the UK, the HSE ensures that these policies and procedures are continuously upheld.

Training & Education

To keep employees up to date with the potential risks and safety measures in place, it is imperative that regular training is conducted. Also important is to integrate operational health and safety training to onboarding procedures. These training sessions should be designed to help employees learn about their assignments as well as any associated risks. Employees should also be enlightened on the identification, mitigation and response procedures in case of an emergency. This might include courses on first aid, fire prevention, ergonomics, hazardous materials identification, accident reporting systems, and so on. For compliance, employers should periodically test their employees to ensure they maintain a high level of proficiency in their roles vis-à-vis safety. This feedback is essential in examining the effectiveness of the training.

Safety Monitoring & Auditing

Analysing the performance of an occupational health management system is critical in improving its underlying processes. This involves monitoring the progress of the existing system, a comprehensive analysis of procedures and documentation and an examination of data compiled from inspections, incident reports and surveys. Measuring OHMS performance requires evaluating a range of factors, including:
  • The efficacy of implemented policies and processes
  • The accuracy of incident reports
  • How effectively hazards are identified and managed
  • Occupational injury/illness rates
  • Compliance with relevant legislation
  • Employee engagement in safety initiatives
  • Engagement with industry stakeholders
Because of the large datasets that need to be constantly analysed, EHS experts recommend the use of occupational health management software. Meddbase offers an all-encompassing solution for all your health and safety management requirements. Our OHMS software adheres to record keeping standards, advances implementation of clinical protocols and delivers information on an easy-to-operate platform. With Meddbase, your organisation is always fully compliant with all regulatory requirements.

Emergency Preparedness and  Response Plans

In addition to providing guidance during the occurrence of an eventuality, the preparation of an emergency plan offers several other benefits. For instance, you may discover the existence of potentially hazardous conditions that could exacerbate an emergency situation, and take steps to eliminate them. The planning process can also reveal any shortcomings, such as the lack of necessary resources, equipment, trained personnel, or supplies, which can be addressed before an emergency arises. Furthermore, an emergency plan demonstrates your organisation's commitment to the safety of its workers and fosters safety awareness. The absence of such a plan could have severe consequences, such as multiple casualties and even pecuniary losses in trying to mitigate the ensuing fallout. Therefore, it is crucial to plan for emergencies in advance, to avoid the confusion that arises from the urgent need for rapid decisions, shortage of time, and lack of resources and ill-prepared personnel. The implementation of an occupational health management system is a dynamic process. It requires a cyclical approach to ensure that new hazards are identified, potential loopholes addressed and changes in legislation are incorporated. Furthermore, the evolving needs of employees must be taken into account to ensure the success and sustainability of the system.

Unlocking the Power of Digital Healthcare: The Benefits and Features of Electronic Health Record (EHR) Systems
March 23, 2023

Manual handling of patient records has proved to be a cumbersome and unnecessarily arduous mode of operation for many modern practices, especially those with high numbers. This is why most of them have adopted EHR systems in their day-to-day, to handle voluminous records with ease.   An Electronic Health Record (EHR) System is a comprehensive digital record of a patient’s overall health. Although the term EHR is used interchangeably with EMR (Electronic Medical Record), the two have distinct scopes. The major differences between EHR and EMR is the context of their usage, their functionality and capabilities. While EHR presents a universal picture of the patient’s wellbeing, including lifestyle factors, past surgeries, immunisations, allergies, data from wearable technology and health tracking devices and relevant information like insurance and demographic data, EMR is limited to a patient’s medical history, diagnoses, medications and test results — information typically found on a paper chart. EMRs work well internally and are rarely shared outside a practice, while on the other hand most EHR systems are highly interoperable and travel well across practices and specialists.  

What Are The Benefits Of Implementing an EHR System?

To reap the full benefits of an EHR system, hospitals and clinics must incorporate comprehensive electronic patient record management models, where data is an essential component at all levels.  With this transition, clinicians and patients can benefit from:
  1. Streamlined workflows
  2. Improved efficiency and cost savings
  3. Significant error reduction
  4. Ease of transfer of patient data across the care continuum
  5. Enhanced patient privacy
  6. Increased patient participation in the care and recovery process
  7. Higher patient satisfaction scores

Types of Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems

These are the most prevalent EHR models in the market currently:
  • On-premise EHRs: These systems are installed and run on a healthcare provider's own servers, allowing them to maintain complete control over their data.
  • Cloud-based EHRs: These systems are hosted remotely on the internet and can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection. They are often less expensive to implement than on-premise EHRs and require less technical expertise to manage; they are one of the most preferred solutions.
  • Patient Portals: These are web-based applications that allow patients to access their own health information, such as test results, medication lists, and appointment schedules.
  • Personal Health Records (PHRs): These are similar to patient portals, but they are managed entirely by patients themselves. PHRs allow patients to track their own health information and share it with healthcare providers as needed.
  • Specialty EHRs: These systems are designed to meet the needs of specific medical specialties, such as paediatrics, cardiology, or oncology. They often include specialised templates and features that are tailored to the needs of the specialty.

How to Choose The Best Medical Record Keeping Solution

In a rapidly evolving and increasingly complex EHR landscape, where vendors are consistently creating highly advanced offerings, it can be difficult for you to choose the right package for your practice. However, there are some basic pointers that can help narrow down your choices. 

Here are the key factors to consider when selecting an EHR system:

  • Technological infrastructure: This includes considerations such as whether the EHR is hosted on-premise or in the cloud, and what types of hardware and software is required and the accompanying costs.
  • EHR Interoperability: The ability to integrate with other applications is critical for creating a unified, cohesive patient record from disparate sources.
  • Customizability: Healthcare providers have varying needs and workflows, so the ability to tailor an EHR to their specific requirements is imperative.
  • EHR Security and privacy: Protecting patient data is of utmost importance, so the EHR should include robust security and privacy features to safeguard against breaches and unauthorised access. One of the main issues arising from digital patient records is the possibility of leaks, so ensure that security features prominently in EHR features and functionalities of the solution you choose.
Additionally, you need to have an exhaustive conversation with your vendor of choice about their software, as part of your due diligence before signing a contract. For instance, you should ask about: Scalability costs: Find out how the cost of the platform/service will change as your practice grows to accommodate more patients. Termination costs: Should you want to back out of a contract before it elapses, are there any penalty fees you’ll be required to pay? Inflation: Your vendor should have a transparent and predictable cost model to show how their prices will vary over time. Integration with internal and third-party software: Will it cost you more? Updates: Ask how often they upgrade their systems, whether it comes with a financial implication and if there will be any down-time during maintenance processes.

How To Successfully Approach EHR Implementation

Implementing a new Electronic Health Record (EHR) system can be a significant challenge for healthcare organisations, requiring not only technical expertise but the ability to manage change and people effectively. Although EHR systems have the potential to revolutionise the way healthcare is delivered and managed, their success depends largely on how they are utilised by healthcare providers. One key aspect of implementing an EHR system effectively is ensuring that all stakeholders are involved and engaged. This includes your clinical and administrative staff and your patients.This way, you can find out early on whether the EHR system is adequate, and mitigate any potential issues or risks in good time. Another important consideration is the need for effective training and support. Implementing a new EHR system can be challenging for users, especially those who are accustomed to working with paper records, so it's important to provide adequate training to ensure that everyone across the board is adept at using the new system. Meddbase provides the best cloud-based EHR system that has been meeting the needs of practitioners and patients alike for almost two decades. The system can be accessed on any web-enabled device (including mobile phones) at no additional costs. This easy accessibility and portability is crucial in modern practices because it facilitates the mobility of healthcare providers in a highly unpredictable world. Click here for a free demo!

The Top 8 Emerging Trends in Occupational Health Management
March 22, 2023

The field of occupational healthcare management has undergone a significant transformation in recent years, with new trends and technologies shaping the industry. This rapid change shows no signs of slowing in the near future, as today's dynamic business landscape requires organisations to evolve, adapt, and maintain effective strategies for safeguarding employees' health and safety in the workplace.  By closely examining current trends and breakthrough advancements, occupational health management professionals can capitalise on opportunities for improvement and anticipate the changing nature of worker well-being. In this article, we will discuss the emerging trends in occupational healthcare management expected to shape the future. 

Emphasis on Mental Health and Wellbeing 

Mental health has gained significant recognition as an integral component of overall worker wellbeing. Employers are becoming more aware of the role that mental health plays in determining productivity and employee satisfaction. Consequently, companies are starting to develop comprehensive mental health strategies that encompass awareness campaigns, training programs, and diagnostic tools. The introduction of digital mental health apps and telehealth platforms further enables organisations to tackle mental health issues effectively and discreetly.  By promoting a culture of mental health awareness and offering support and resources for employees, employers can improve employee engagement and job satisfaction. This can lead to reduced turnover rates and increased productivity as employees feel supported and valued in the workplace. 

The Impact of Telemedicine 

The advent of telemedicine has transformed how workers access cutting-edge healthcare services. Employees now leverage digital solutions to consult with medical professionals and receive diagnoses remotely. This approach not only expedites the diagnostic process but also minimises downtime associated with clinical visits. Organisations must adapt to this transformation by integrating telehealth technology into their occupational health management strategies.  Integrating telemedicine into occupational health can offer several benefits to businesses. For instance, it can reduce healthcare costs by minimizing the need for expensive in-person appointments and emergency room visits. It can also enhance employee satisfaction and retention by offering a convenient and flexible way to access healthcare services, especially for remote or geographically dispersed teams.   Telemedicine can improve productivity by reducing the time and resources required for healthcare-related absences and by enabling faster diagnosis and treatment of work-related injuries and illnesses.   Moreover, investing in telehealth technology can help businesses create a healthier and more productive workforce, which can lead to improved performance and increased profitability. 

Focus on Preventive Care    

Preventative care is an essential aspect of occupational healthcare management that cannot be overlooked. In addition to reducing the risk of serious health issues, preventative care can also help to identify health problems early on when they are easier and less expensive to treat. Regular health screenings, immunisations, and health risk assessments can play a critical role in preventing workplace injuries, chronic diseases, and other health issues.  By promoting a culture of health and wellness in the workplace, employers can create a positive and productive work environment that benefits everyone involved. 

Use of Big Data and Personalised Healthcare 

 In the era of big data, healthcare providers are embracing the power of analytics and artificial intelligence to inform decision-making and better understand workplace hazards. By examining vast datasets, occupational health professionals can identify previously unnoticed patterns or trends, leading to insights that can inform data-driven preventative measures. Moreover, access to extensive health records enables healthcare providers to deliver personalised care tailored to individual workers' needs and vulnerabilities.  It can help to identify high-risk areas and prioritise preventive measures to reduce workplace accidents, injuries, and illnesses, thus lowering costs associated with workers' compensation claims and lost productivity. It can also improve the accuracy and efficiency of medical diagnoses and treatment, reducing the time and costs of medical care.  

Integrating Wellness Initiatives into Corporate Culture 

Encouraging employees to take an active role in their own health is paramount. Progressive organisations are increasingly supporting a culture of wellness by offering health education, lifestyle coaching, and exercise programs as an integral part of the corporate experience. By emphasising prevention and proactive approaches to health, companies are fostering a climate where employees value self-care and personal wellbeing.  

Workplace Ergonomics and Design 

The future of occupational healthcare management will place a heightened focus on ergonomics and workplace design. Growing awareness of the impact of sedentary work, poor posture, and repetitive stress injuries has led employers to adopt measures aimed at preventing poor health outcomes related to workplace-environmental factors.   One such initiative is the integration of sit-stand workstations and ergonomic furniture, helping to mitigate discomfort and long-term musculoskeletal issues. This way, employers can guarantee increased productivity. 

 The Role of Wearable Technologies 

 Wearable devices, such as fitness trackers and smartwatches, are revolutionising the way people monitor their health. As fine-grained, real-time data becomes increasingly accessible, both employees and employers can leverage these digital tools to better understand individual risks and work-related health concerns. Consequently, occupational health management teams must brace for the challenges associated with wearable technology, such as ensuring data privacy while promoting employee health. 

Regulation Compliance and Data Privacy 

As occupational healthcare management continues to evolve, the importance of complying with regulations and protecting employee data becomes paramount. Organisations must stay informed about the various laws, guidelines, and best practices around employee healthcare while taking steps to safeguard sensitive health information.  The future of occupational healthcare management is both exciting and challenging. Trends such as mental health recognition, big data analytics, workplace ergonomics, wellness initiatives, and data privacy will pave the way for a new era for employee health and safety. By staying apprised of these emerging directions, industry professionals can ensure their organisations protect and advance the well-being of their workforce. 

How a Practice Management System Can Improve Patient Care Efficiency
March 16, 2023

Ensuring the safety and efficacy of patient information is indispensable for any medical facility. Administrators must be able to access sensitive data from appointment records, billing info, insurance claims, etc., quickly yet securely at all times in order to provide optimal care.  A well-organised record system can significantly enhance a hospital's operations and reduce errors and liabilities while greatly improving communication between practitioners, their patients, and the rest of the hospital or clinical staff.   In the past record keeping was handled manually, however, the digital revolution has spurred the automation of data handling in hospitals. The demand for Practice Management Software (PMS) has been so high recently, that it is estimated that the value of the market will increase by 8.5% annually until 2030. Another salient statistic is the 2020 survey by Black Book Market Research that found that 78% of medical centres are currently using some form of medical practice management software. 

What is a Practice Management System (PMS) and How Different is it From Electronic Medical Records (EMR)? 

Running a healthcare practice involves both medical and administrative aspects, which can be managed through two distinct software systems: Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and Practice Management System (PMS).   EMRs store patients' clinical data such as their historical diagnoses, prescriptions, allergies, lab results and other medical information. By providing real-time access to up-to-date information, these records assist healthcare providers in making informed treatment decisions while monitoring patient progress and treatment outcomes.  Practice Management Systems (PMS) on the other hand, facilitate the managerial aspect of healthcare practice administration. These systems efficiently streamline administrative responsibilities, reduce exertion on non-clinical staff and lessen the duration needed to carry out tasks manually. PMS software provides a platform for healthcare providers to regulate their patients' appointment schedules, generate invoices, process payments, and electronically submit insurance claims, ultimately mitigating errors and expediting the billing and reimbursement process. In most practices, these two systems work in collaboration to improve patient care. According to a study by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, one community hospital in the US adopted an integrated system and reported an average billable gain of $26/patient and enjoyed a $100K increase in revenue during the study period. 

Advantages of Adopting a Practice Management System in Your Practice 

Here’s how adopting PMS software can dramatically increase your competitive edge in the healthcare industry:   Efficient Appointment Scheduling  Your staff can easily view available time slots and schedule appointments without having to rely on manual paperwork or phone calls, saving effort and reducing time conflicts.  Improved Patient Record Management  You can input patient information into the system, and access and update records as needed. This improves the quality of care provided to patients and ensures that you comply with regulatory requirements.   Streamlined Billing and Claims Processing  PMS software can simplify billing and claims processing, resulting in faster and more efficient claim submissions and payments.    Enhanced Reporting and Analytics  With PMS software, you can generate reports on various aspects of your operations, such as patient volume, revenue, and expenses. These reports can help identify areas for improvement and help you make informed, data-driven decisions.  

Meddbase Offers Top-of-the-Line Solutions 

In today's fast-paced and competitive healthcare industry, your practice needs to stay ahead by providing optimised services to patients. As discussed above, Practice Management Systems (PMS) can help simplify your administrative and business tasks, while also improving your workflows.    At Meddbase, we understand the intensive efforts that go into running a successful medical practice. That’s why we provide robust systems that take the burden off your staff, so they can concentrate on providing the best care to patients.   With over six million patient records and counting, our cloud-based PMS provides both clinical and administrative interoperability for healthcare facilities across the UK and the globe. And we also take it a step further, offering unique branding templates to help provide all levels of support you need in running your practice on an efficient basis.  Don't miss out on unlocking the full potential of your practice. Contact us to learn more about how our innovative PMS can pave the way for your practice's success. Our team of experts is ready to guide you in optimising your healthcare management experience, equipping you with the tools necessary for scaling your practice and increasing patient satisfaction. 

Tomorrow’s Healthier Workplace: Strategies for Success in Occupational Health Management Systems
March 10, 2023

The importance of incorporating an Occupational Health Management System (OHMS) in your business operations cannot be understated. Although it is only recently that businesses have begun taking into consideration the overall well-being of their employees, especially in workplaces that have long-been considered low-risk, the overall integration of OHM systems into the core functionality of businesses has been dismal. In the UK for instance, there has only been a 0.8% growth in the OHMS industry in the last 5 years.

Since health is such a dynamic hot-button issue, even those businesses that have legacy systems in place may still have challenges in their implementation because of how rapidly the areas of focus shift. For instance, 10 years ago, businesses would not have had to factor in too seriously the mental health of their employees or taken nebulous issues like burnout into consideration. But in recent years, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic, and the increase of Gen-Zs in the workplace, there has been increased demands of accountability from employers.

As workplaces evolve, so do the practices and policies that support employee health and safety. In this post, we will explore some of the latest trends in OHMS and discuss future directions, including the role of emerging technologies such as big data. By staying up-to-date on these developments, we can create safer and healthier workplaces for your employees.

Forward-thinking Approaches in Occupational Health Management Systems

Mental Health in the Workplace

The overall health of a modern workplace includes both the physical and psychological well-being of its workers.

While discharging their duties, employees may undergo extreme psychosocial distress stemming from the demands of their tasks,  your company’s organisational structure and their interpersonal relationships. Although not immediately apparent, the hazards emanating from poor mental health practices in the workplace have the potential to impact your employee’s health and safety, as well as to reduce their productivity and cause other adverse organisational outcomes, which in the end impact your bottom line.

In many countries, including the UK, occupational acts have been amended to encompass psychological well-being in the definition of workplace safety and harassment. So on-top of ensuring that no physical harm comes to your employees, some legislative requirements compel you to protect their psychological wellbeing as well. These laws now recognize psychological health as part of the overall health and safety responsibilities in the handling of claims.

Working with your employees, you can create a comprehensive workplace health and safety program to achieve a psychologically safe workplace. Incorporating aspects such as stress management programs, teletherapy, and mindfulness training into your operational culture can have a significant impact on the wellness levels in your workplace.

The Role of Big Data in OHMS

Occupational Health Management Systems can leverage the power of big data to gain valuable insights into employee health and safety. By analysing large sets of data from various sources such as employee health records, safety incident reports, and environmental monitoring, OHMS can identify trends in employee health that may indicate potential hazards in the workplace.

A perfect example of the impact of big data in detecting risks is a study conducted in Europe utilising 20 datasets on physician reporting and compensation claims from 10 different countries, deriving trends in occupational disease incidence. The researchers considered the varying methods of data collection used in each country and concluded that the increased pool of information from data sharing had tremendous benefits in the detection of patterns.

The increased computerization of the workplace and the rise of occupational health compliance software over the last few years has been a key enabler of the accurate interpolation of risks and liabilities from past occurrences.

 

Diversity and Inclusion

OHMS are tasked with promoting and maintaining the health, safety, and well-being of all employees, regardless of their gender, age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or physical ability.

To truly address the needs of diverse populations, OHMS professionals must first acknowledge the unique challenges that different groups face in the workplace. This includes understanding the specific health risks and hazards that may affect workers from different backgrounds and adapting prevention strategies accordingly.

For instance, as of 2021, there were over 4.4 million disabled people employed in the UK. These workers may face challenges such as difficulties in being alerted to danger and mobility issues that could hinder their evacuation during emergencies like a fire. Therefore, special considerations must be made to accommodate these differently-abled persons in the case of an event.

One way to ensure that your internal systems are inclusive is to incorporate the perspectives and experiences of diverse communities into the development of workplace health and safety policies. When you engage and consult with employee groups that represent the interests of underrepresented or marginalised populations, there are reduced chances of discrimination.

 

Adoption of OHMS software

Implementing OHMS software can have a significant impact on the overall health and safety of employees, while also streamlining and simplifying the management of occupational health data. OHMS software enables companies to better track and manage workplace injuries and illnesses, reducing the likelihood of recurrent accidents and improving overall health outcomes for employees. It also provides a centralised database that can be easily accessed by relevant stakeholders, allowing for better communication and collaboration between health professionals, managers, and employees. This is especially important for the remote and hybrid work systems that have gained traction in the past few years.

Investing in workplace health management systems software can also have significant financial benefits for companies. By reducing the frequency and severity of workplace injuries and illnesses, companies can save money on lost productivity, medical costs, and compensation claims. Additionally, OHMS software can help companies comply with regulatory requirements and avoid costly fines.

Meddbase provides a comprehensive OHMS software package that provides a high return on investment by creating a safer, more productive workplace for employees, and a more efficient and profitable business for your company.

5 Steps for Buying a Medical Management Software – Make the Right Choice for Your Organisation
March 7, 2023

Medical management software is an essential tool for healthcare providers to streamline their operations, manage their risk, improve patient care, and maintain compliance. But with so many options available in the market, choosing the right software can be overwhelming; a survey from Gartner shows that more than three-quarters of customers found the process very complicated or difficult.   However, by following a few simple tips and being clear with your provider, you can make the process much smoother and ensure that you choose the right solution for your organisation.   In this article, we'll outline the steps to help you navigate the buying journey and make the right choice for your needs. 

Research & Assess Your Needs  

The first step in selecting the right medical management software is to determine what features you need. Are there specific functionalities required or do you need something more comprehensive? Make sure you research all available systems and compare them against your needs. This will help you narrow down your options and make an informed decision about which system best suits your organisation’s requirements.  

Discuss With Stakeholders & Staff 

It is also important to discuss any proposed changes with other stakeholders in your organisation as well as employees who will be using the system on a regular basis. Ask for their input on which features they think are most important and suggest any changes that could improve the efficiency of their workflows. By getting feedback from stakeholders and employees, you can ensure that everyone is on board with the chosen system before making a purchase.  

Test-Drive The System  

Before committing to any medical management software, it’s important to request a demo to test-drive it first so that you can get a feel for how it works and whether it meets all your requirements. This will give you an idea of how user-friendly the system is, how intuitive its interface is, and whether its features are adequate for your needs.  

Evaluate Security Features  

Security should be a top priority when choosing medical management software. Be sure to research any security measures in place such as data encryption or two-factor authentication and how those measures might affect other aspects of your organisation’s operations. Additionally, take into account any regulatory requirements that may apply such as GDPR compliance.  

Inquire About Training & Support Services  

Training is essential when introducing new technology into an organisation. Make sure that any solution you are considering offers robust training and support services so that your staff can quickly become comfortable using the system and feel confident in their ability to use it efficiently on a daily basis.   Ask about availability of documentation, on-demand videos, and one-on-one support from experts in case any issues arise during implementation or while using the system on an ongoing basis.   In summary, when buying medical management software for your organisation, it's important to take into account all aspects of the purchasing process including researching different solutions available on the market, evaluating security features carefully, and inquiring about training and support services offered by vendors. Making an informed decision will help ensure that you select a solution that meets all your organisation’s needs, both now and in the future. The right choice can save time and money while providing optimal results for everyone involved.  Meddbase is a healthcare management software provider that offers a full suite of features, including consultations, scheduling, patient analysis, document management, electronic referrals, pathology, and reporting. The system also includes a patient portal, automated appointment reminders, and a built-in telemedicine platform.   Whether you're a small clinic or a large hospital, Meddbase has the tools and support you need to streamline your operations and improve patient care. Here, you can get in touch to request a demo to see how we can transform your business.   

The Impact of Occupational Health Management Software on Compliance and Risk Management​
February 27, 2023

For occupational health leaders, managing compliance and risk can be a huge challenge. Compliance with occupational health and safety regulations is critical for organisations to avoid legal liabilities, maintain productivity, and protect the health of their employees. Even if it sounds complicated, with the help of comprehensive occupational health management software, organisations can effectively manage their safety programs, risk and maintain compliance with regulations.  Occupational health management software (OHMS) is a technological tool that helps manage and run occupational health programs efficently.  It doesn’t only support companies in managing employee health records, performing safety risk assessments, tracking safety incidents and accidents, but also maintains compliance with regulatory requirements. With an effective OHMS put in place, organisations can manage their safety programs by automating safety-related tasks and providing real-time data analytics to identify safety trends, hazards, and risks.  By harnessing this technology's power through quick implementation processes & automated programs, it’s easy to manage safety programs in various ways. Here are the main impacts of OHMS on compliance and risk management: 

Streamlined Safety Processes 

With occupational health management software, safety processes can be simplified and automated. This will not only create a more sustainably profitable and efficient business, but it will also give organisations the valuable gift of peace of mind; knowing that their staff is kept safe from hazards or incidents which could jeopardize productivity. 

Improved Efficiency Through Automation  

One of the biggest benefits of OHM software is that it automates certain processes to save time and effort. These processes include scheduling appointments, filing paperwork, tracking employee data, and filing claims with workers’ compensation providers. By taking care of these tasks automatically, the software makes life much easier for occupational health departments.  Using the right OHMS provides the perfect opportunity to grow occupational health services while sustaining high-quality care. Digitising processes can assist organisations in reaching more patients without increasing staff, streamlining workloads and ensuring smooth healthcare experiences for everyone involved. 

Easy Regulatory Compliance 

OHMS helps organisations maintain and demonstrate compliance with occupational health and safety regulations. The software can track regulatory requirements and provide alerts when compliance deadlines are approaching. It can also generate reports that demonstrate compliance with regulatory requirements, which can be useful during inspections and audits. 

Better Access to Data 

OHMS provides data analytics that can help companies identify safety trends, hazards, and risks. It generates reports that provide insights into safety performance, such as incident rates, injury rates, and compliance status. 

Improved Risk Management 

It can support occupational health organisations in identifying safety risks and hazards before they lead to incidents or accidents. With using the right software, organisations at any scale can easily provide risk assessments and suggest mitigation strategies to reduce risks. This proactive approach to risk management can prevent accidents and injuries, which can save lives and reduce costs associated with workplace injuries. 

Improved Employee Health 

OHMS can assist in managing employee health records, tracking occupational illnesses, and monitoring employee health. The software can generate reports that provide insights into employee health, such as the prevalence of chronic diseases or the effectiveness of wellness programs. It can help identify health risks and develop strategies to improve employee health, which can reduce healthcare costs and improve employee wellbeing.  In summary, occupational health management software can have a significant impact on compliance and risk management. It can help organisations create a sustainably profitable business, streamline safety processes, provide real-time data analytics, maintain regulatory compliance, improve risk management, and improve employee health.   By investing in Meddbase Occupational Health & Safety software, your business could remarkably reduce the cost of accidents and injuries on-site, which in turn also boost productivity and keep your organisation's reputation to a high standard. Contact us and see Meddbase in action to discover how it can transform your business. 

The Role of Technology in Advancing Occupational Health Management
February 20, 2023

With the rapid advancement of technology, it is now more important than ever to leverage the benefits of technology in managing occupational health. From tracking employee health to mitigating risks, technology has become an integral part of occupational health management. Here, we will take a deeper look into how technology can be used to enhance occupational health management and what data suggests about its effectiveness.

The Benefits of Technology in Occupational Health Management

When it comes to managing occupational health, there are many advantages that come with utilising technological solutions. For starters, technology can help automate repetitive processes such as tracking employee health and monitoring workplace safety. Automation reduces the amount of manual labour required for these tasks, freeing up time for more important work.

Additionally, automation ensures that data collection is accurate and consistent across all locations or departments within an organisation. This helps ensure that employees have access to accurate information regarding their health and safety at all times. Another way in which technology enhances occupational health management is by mitigating employee risk. Automating the process of managing the occupational health process massively reduces risk. With a purpose-built application like Meddbase, the mitigation of risks is already pre-built into the solution, along with support services provided by the vendor.

Further benefits also include:

Centralised Health Data Management: Occupational health management software allows employers to centralise employee health data in one place, making it easier to identify patterns and trends that may indicate a potential safety risk. With all health data in one place, employers can quickly identify workers who may be at risk due to factors such as chronic health conditions or medication use.

Increased Efficiency: Technology can help streamline processes, reduce paperwork, and save time. For example, electronic medical records can improve the speed and accuracy of medical assessments and ensure that all necessary data is recorded.

Better Employee Engagement: Technology can improve employee engagement and motivation. For example, wearable devices can track employee activity levels, encourage healthy habits, and provide personalised health coaching.

Cost Savings: By improving safety and reducing workplace injuries, technology can help employers save money on insurance premiums, medical costs, and workers' compensation claims.

Up-To-Date Data and Statistics on the Role of Technology in Occupational Health Management

The below findings suggest that investing in technological solutions can lead not only to improved worker safety, but also a healthier work environment and cost savings over time:

  • A survey by the Society of Occupational Medicine found that 58% of occupational health practitioners use electronic medical records (EMRs) to manage employee health data.
  • The same survey found that 57% of occupational health practitioners use online appointment booking systems.
  • A survey by Mercer found that 67% of UK employers use online platforms to deliver employee health and wellbeing programs.
  • The same survey by Mercer found that 42% of UK employers use mobile health apps to support employee health and wellbeing.
  • According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses has declined steadily over the past decade, due in part to the use of technology to improve safety and reduce hazards.
  • In addition, a study published by the World Economic Forum found that 81% of organisations believe investing in occupational health technologies will result in significant cost savings over time. It was also found that two-thirds of organisations felt they were able to reduce the risk associated with workplace hazards more effectively thanks to technological solutions.

The use of technology in occupational health management has numerous benefits, including improved safety, increased efficiency, better employee engagement, and cost savings. However, employers must also be aware of the challenges associated with implementing new technology, including cost, data security, technical issues, and employee privacy concerns. By doing thorough research and analysis, employers can choose software that aligns with their specific needs and requirements. The right software will not only help to reduce costs and increase productivity but also minimise risks associated with data security and technical issues. As with any significant investment, taking the time to carefully evaluate and select the right software can pay off in the long run, leading to improved occupational health management outcomes for both employers and employees.

This includes helping them understand the impact of the new system on processes, roles, and structure, and making sure that everyone is ready to embrace and adopt the changes that come with the implementation. By providing ongoing support and guidance, we can help ensure that we deliver the expected results.

Change Management Strategies for Successful Healthcare Software Implementation
February 14, 2023

By Will Temple, Managing Director of Meddbase

The rapid pace of advancements and transformations in healthcare puts continual pressure on providers to revamp their operations, and cater to the changing requirements of patients while incorporating the latest innovative technologies.

This article highlights the significance of change management in the healthcare industry and provides guidance on healthcare software implementation - as without a structured approach to managing change, developments can be hindered by a lack of uniformity and misunderstandings.

Organisational Readiness: Communicate Clearly and Consistently

Before any software implementation can begin, it’s important to assess the organisation’s readiness for change. This includes evaluating the organisational culture, resources available for the project, organisational structure and the processes that will need to be adjusted or changed, and any other factors that could influence success.

By understanding the “big picture” of the organisation before beginning a software implementation project, you can better align your strategy with organisational goals and objectives.

A key factor is to make sure that your team is aware of the reasons for the change, the benefits it will bring, and how it will impact their work. Keep them informed throughout the process, and encourage open communication to address any concerns or questions they may have.

Get Leaders to Support Change Management

Having executive leadership support is critical for any successful software implementation project. This means that top-level decision makers are actively involved in setting objectives, providing necessary resources for success, communicating progress throughout the process, and ultimately taking responsibility for outcomes.

Without executive level buy-in from leadership, software implementations are often destined to fail due to lack of resources or commitment from stakeholders who are not fully invested in the project and its success.

Prioritise Clear Communication

Successful organisations prioritise communication during their software implementations—both internally amongst staff members as well as externally with customers/clients/patients who may be affected by changes associated with the project.

Involve your team in the planning and decision-making process to ensure that their needs and concerns are taken into account. This can also help to build buy-in and commitment to the change.

Provide Training and Support

Additionally, having a comprehensive training program in place prior to launch ensures that all staff members have an understanding of how to use new systems effectively and efficiently when they go live. It’s also important that employees are given adequate time to become comfortable with new technologies before being expected to use them in their day-to-day roles.

Ensure that your team has the necessary training and support to become proficient in the new software. This may include in-person training, online tutorials, or ongoing support from the software provider, or an internal IT team.

Adapt to the Culture of Continuous Learning

Encourage your team to embrace the change and see it as an opportunity to learn and grow. Encourage ongoing learning and support to ensure that your team is able to continually improve and adapt to new technologies.

Implementing a new medical management software solution can be a challenging process, but with careful planning and support, you can ensure that your team is able to successfully adopt the new technology and realise the benefits it brings.

Change management is a critical component of digital transformation in healthcare settings. Organisations looking to implement healthcare software should consider each step of their change management strategy carefully—from assessing organisational readiness through to communication and training—in order to ensure a successful outcome for their projects.

When done correctly, these strategies help set a foundation for long-term success within an organisation by promoting user adoption rates and helping teams work together more efficiently towards common goals. With careful planning and execution of these change management strategies, organisations can gain greater control over projects while ensuring positive outcomes overall. ​

By staying up-to-date on best practices for change management, organisations can better prepare for upcoming projects and initiatives. This includes having a clear understanding of the existing infrastructure and organisational goals, ensuring that all stakeholders are included in the process, identifying key metrics to measure success, and creating user training programs to ensure that everyone is on board with the changes. Additionally, setting up a change control plan prior to any transitions will help identify risks and potential roadblocks early on while helping stakeholders stay ahead of any issues that may arise throughout the project lifecycle.

The Meddbase team will help prepare your organisation for the challenges of change management by providing training to your staff and working closely with them to ensure that they are fully prepared for the adoption of Meddbase.

This includes helping them understand the impact of the new system on processes, roles, and structure, and making sure that everyone is ready to embrace and adopt the changes that come with the implementation. By providing ongoing support and guidance, we can help ensure that we deliver the expected results.

Meddbase in National Health Executive Magazine
December 1, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in National Health Executive Magazine.

The Critical Role Technologies Can Play in Supporting Patients and Health Leaders at ICB Level

‘When you know better, you do better.’ We often say this in my family when our knowledge on a topic improves or changes, to remind ourselves that our behaviour should now be adjusted accordingly. After 19 years as a GP - and one who thrives on learning about innovation and systems management - I enjoy working with the technology around us to discover ways we can do better for ourselves, our colleagues and our patients. Since becoming the regional lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire in 2019 I have been focused on a topic that I believe to be an obvious area in which we could do better: patient recruitment to the National Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP). This nine-month behavioural intervention, either face to face or online, is aimed at adults in England at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. After running for three years, only 19% of those eligible had participated in the NDPP in our area, despite evidence that course attendance reduces your personal risk of Diabetes by 37%.' Read the full article at National Health Executive.  

Meddbase in Digital Health: Text message prompts boost engagement
November 11, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Digital Health. Read the full article on Digitalhealth.net

Text message prompts boost engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes

A pilot study from NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board (ICB) has revealed how powerful text messaging can be in increasing patient engagement in healthy lifestyles programmes. The pilot found that text message prompts to patients increased the number of referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) by over 1,000%. The study set out to explore whether the digital communications software managed at ICB-level is more effective than postal invites to engage patients in health programmes. It was supported by the ICB’s clinical technology partner, Meddbase. According to the study, using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to a:
  • 1,000% + increase in NDPP referrals
  • 331% increase in the number of patients who attend at least one session of the NDPP
  • 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period.
Meddbase software was used to enable the ICB’s engagement officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria and also schedule text message prompts for the patient. At the same time all this information is captured into the electronic patient record. Dr Tom Milligan, clinical lead for diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. “The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within general practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.”

Meddbase in News from the North: prompts to patients increase referrals
November 8, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in News From The North. Read the full article on Newsfromthenorth

Study: Text message prompts to patients increase referrals to NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme by 1000%+

A pilot study of 795 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging to engage patients with health intervention programs – after text prompts led to a 1000%+ increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. The study was conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, with support from its clinical technology partner Meddbase. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to:
  • 1,000%+ increase in NDPP referrals – from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month
  • 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) – with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study
  • 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period – with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16
The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report, ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37% – but it can only have the desired impact with patient participation. The study was conducted using software from Meddbase, an advanced clinical management provider. The software was used to enable the ICB’s Engagement Officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We’ve seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That’s the beauty of this solution – the untapped potential is huge.” Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach patients at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to patient communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.”  

Meddbase in Diabetes Times: Prompts increase referrals to NHS DPP
November 5, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Diabetes Times. Read the full article on Diabetestimes.co.uk.

Text message prompts increase referrals to NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme

A pilot study of 795 people with prediabetes has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging to engage individuals with health intervention programmes.  According to the findings, text prompts led to a 1000 per cent increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP). The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging people in healthy lifestyle programmes. The study was conducted by the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, with support from its clinical technology partner Meddbase. It found that using identification tools and automated text message prompts led to:
  • 1,000 per cent increase in NDPP referrals – from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month
  • 331 per cent increase in the number of people attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘milestone one’) – with the previous monthly average of 16 participants rising to 69 in the first month of the study
  • 181 per cent increase in the number of people attending sessions over a three-month period – with the findings showing an average of 45 participants reaching milestone one each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16.
The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report, ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers people at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Approximately two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37 per cent. The study was conducted using software from Meddbase, an advanced clinical management provider. The software was used to enable the ICB’s Engagement Officer to quickly identify eligible people, check them against criteria and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We’ve seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. “Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough people to start a group.” He added: “In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage conversions. That’s the beauty of this solution – the untapped potential is huge.” Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of people with pre-diabetes. “The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer individuals that would otherwise have been missed.” He added: “The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. “Given the current capacity challenges within general practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach people at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. “The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.”

Meddbase in Healthcare Newsdesk: prompts to patients increase referrals
November 4, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Healthcare Newsdesk. Read the full article on Healthcare-newsdesk.co.uk

Study: Text message prompts to patients increase referrals to NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme by 1000%+

A pilot study of 795 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging to engage patients with health intervention programs – after text prompts led to a 1000%+ increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. The study was conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, with support from its clinical technology partner Meddbase. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to:
  • 1,000%+ increase in NDPP referrals – from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month
  • 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) – with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study
  • 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period – with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16
The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report, ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37% – but it can only have the desired impact with patient participation. The study was conducted using software from Meddbase, an advanced clinical management provider. The software was used to enable the ICB’s Engagement Officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We’ve seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That’s the beauty of this solution – the untapped potential is huge.” Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach patients at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to patient communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.”

Meddbase in Health Tech World: Soaring patient referrals
October 31, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Health Tech World. Read the full article on Healthtechworld.co.uk.

Soaring patient referrals in diabetes prevention programme – thanks to ICB texting pilot

The NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme has seen a 1000% surge in patient referrals thanks to a study by Meddbase – using ICB texting over traditional postal invites.

A pilot study of almost 800 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging, more than doubling the number of pre-diabetes patients attending sessions over a three-month period. The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. It was conducted by Meddbase, an advanced clinical management system provider, and NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board. blank

It’s your GP texting

The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report: ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The study findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to: ● 1,000%+ increase in NDPP referrals – from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month ● 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) – with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study ● 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period – with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16

Pilot brings “phenomenal success” for diabetes scheme

The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37% – but it can only have the desired impact with patient participation. blank Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We’ve seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. “Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. “In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That’s the beauty of this solution – the untapped potential is huge.” blank Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, added: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. “The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. “The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” blank Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach patients at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. “The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to patient communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.”

Meddbase in NHE: Text prompts driving patient engagement
October 30, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in National Health Executive. Read the full article on Nationalhealthexecutive.com.

Text prompts driving patient engagement in diabetes care

A pilot study exploring the efficacy of ICB-managed text messaging to help pre-diabetic patients engage more with health intervention programmes has reported back very promising results. The study, which was conducted by Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, was designed to investigate whether some of the latest digital communications software – when managed at ICB-level – was more effective than traditional postal invites at getting patients to actively involve themselves in healthy lifestyle programmes. Key outcomes from the trial included:
  • Text prompts led to a 1,000%+ increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) – going from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month.
  • A 331% bump in the amount of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP – going from an average of 16 patients attending per month to 69 in the first month of the study.
  • A 181% improvement in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period – going from an average of 16 patients reaching Milestone 1 per month to 45 patients per month.
Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. “The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Ultimately, the findings demonstrate the effectiveness of digital technology when trying to encourage patient engagement and how it can drive participation in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. Also commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We've seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. “In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That's the beauty of this solution - the untapped potential is huge.”

Meddbase in Clinical Services Journal: Text prompts increase referrals
October 29, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Clinical Services Journal. Read the full article on Clinicalservicesjournal.com.

Text message prompts increase referrals to NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme by 1000%+

A pilot study of 795 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of ICB-managed text messaging to engage patients with health intervention programmes, after text prompts led to a 1000%+ increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP). The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at ICB-level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. The study was conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, with support from its clinical technology partner Meddbase. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to: ●  1,000%+ increase in NDPP referrals - from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month ●  331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) - with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study ●  181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period - with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16 The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report, ‘It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme’. The findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they don’t change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37% - but it can only have the desired impact with patient participation. The study was conducted using software from Meddbase, an advanced clinical management provider. The software was used to enable the ICB’s Engagement Officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, Senior Partnership Officer (Diabetes) at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We've seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That's the beauty of this solution; the untapped potential is huge.” Dr. Tom Milligan, a GP and the Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, said: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well, but in fact we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.” Erin Johnston, NHS Product Owner at Meddbase, said: “It has been exciting to work with colleagues at the NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on this pilot, which has achieved brilliant results using our innovative clinical management software to reach patients at-scale as part of an effective and efficient programme. The outcome clearly shows that a strategic ICB-managed approach to patient communications, supported by the right kind of clinical management software, can have a significant impact on uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes.” In addition to the whitepaper, the ICB will provide a free webinar on how to deliver a strategic ICB-managed approach to increase patient uptake in healthy lifestyle programmes.

Meddbase in Pulse: Ten-fold referral increase for diabetes prevention
October 28, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Pulse. Read the full article on Pulsetoday.co.uk.

Ten-fold referral increase for diabetes prevention when eligible patients texted, finds study

Texting patients to inform them of their eligibility to take part in the diabetes prevention programme brought about a ten-fold increase in referrals, according to a pilot study. Conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, the intervention saw the number of patients referred to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) rise from 32 referrals per month to 363 (1,034%). According to a study authors, the findings indicate how using technology at ICB-level can improve patient engagement without adding to GP workload. The ICB identified 795 patients across four practices who were eligible for the NDPP, and sent automated texts over two weeks in January 2022 informing patients of their eligibility. In addition to a spike in referrals, the study saw a 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme, rising from 16 patients to 69 in the first month of the study. This continued over three months, with an average of 45 patients each month attending their first session, up by 181% on the baseline 16 per month. The NDPP launched in 2015, and is typically accessed via GP referral, NHS Health Check or self-referral. It supports people with pre-diabetes to change their lifestyle, with data suggesting it can help cut a person’s chances of developing type 2 diabetes by 37%. The authors said that although it is common for patient comms to be managed at practice level, it ‘might not be the most efficient or effective’ means, given the time-cost and expertise needed. The study said: ‘Utilising technology to enable an ICB to invite patients from multiple GP practices at once also appears to have unlocked a number of efficiencies, saving GP practices time and money.’ It added that responsibility for the pilot sat with the ICB’s engagement officer ‘meaning that patients benefited without increasing the burden on GP practice staff’. It also suggested that the software it used – Meddbase – allowed the ICB to quickly identify and invite patients, while also mitigating against the risk of digital exclusion. Scott Walker, the ICB’s senior partnership officer for diabetes, said: ‘Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. ‘In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions.’ And Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and clinical lead for diabetes at the ICB, said: ‘This pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. ‘The result was far greater uptake as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. ‘Given the current capacity challenges within general practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.’ The launch of the diabetes prevention programme has led to a 7% reduction in the number of new type 2 diabetes diagnoses in England between 2018 and 2019, representing around 18,000 people, NHS England said earlier this year. The University of Manchester research also showed that completing the nine-month NHS programme reduces a patient’s chance of developing the condition by more than a third (37%), with patients seeing an average weight loss of 3.3kg. Unless urgent action is taken to reverse rising case numbers, one in 10 adults will be living with diabetes by 2030, Diabetes UK warned last year.  

Increasing Referrals to Diabetes Prevention Programmes with Meddbase
October 28, 2022

It was during a conversation with one of our diabetes clinical leads at Humber and North Yorkshire ICB in late 2021, that we recognised our ability to recruit patients onto the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) was one of the things that had suffered severely during Covid. We recognised the need to alleviate some of the perceived burden of referrals to the NDPP in a way that wouldn’t detract from the benefits of patient of the programme. The programme had been running for 3 years but our primary care colleagues understandably needed to focus on other areas during this difficult time. There must be an easier way, we thought - and we began to come up with a concept; we recognised that everything in our record keeping is done digitally, so why not remove some of the workload from an already overstretched workforce by using a digital solution for this aspect of our healthcare management. Through an opportunity with NHS Digital, we were introduced to Meddbase as a partner, to look at the potential to produce a digital solution to drive up referral volumes and improve the health of our patients. The pilot programme we ran with Meddbase exploited the changing attitude towards digital communications that happened during Covid, as people became used to interacting digitally; we all have phones in our pockets and we knew we needed to capitalise on that. We also knew we couldn’t achieve these things without a provider to share the expertise and tools to fully exploit the possibilities; we can be risk averse when it comes to trying new things, but programmes outside of the core NHS work, like the NDPP, allow us to be more innovative in our thinking. We worked with Care Plus Group on the pilot as they hold the GP Data Quality contract for the practices involved and were able to run immediate searches for similar list sizes and demographics, so we could compare like with like in the context of this pilot and better understand the real implications of “opt-in” and “opt-out”invitation campaign using  patient text messaging. Our NDPP delivery partner, Xyla, were also keen to adopt and adapt their care pathway as part of the efforts. What we have now is a closed loop solution, that creates a set of states. Patients go into it and what you get at the end of the process is a defined set of outcomes: a group of patients who will proceed, a group who have declined, and a group who have yet to respond but are still identifiable. Compared to a few hundred patients that nobody quite knows what’s going on with, that’s a huge improvement - and you can work with that data in future to help with the overall understanding in terms of what patients want for support. The vast majority of patients have a mobile phone number on their record, so it’s great: simple automated activity but with the right checks and balances in place to know we are doing it safely and doing it well. It’s important to know that while we have used this method for the NHS  Diabetes Prevention Programme, because we have a strong focus on it, these mechanisms work to support any programme where you are looking at bulk identification and referrals. It gives the most precious resource we have back to practice staff which is time. They can then focus on the key areas which place more immediate demands on them, for example Covid vaccination programmes. A quick conversation with each practice confirmed that for patients who were referred off the back of the pilot, real health benefits were seen and none of these patients would have been contacted otherwise due to the ongoing pressures and demands. This pilot has shown us the ease with which eligible patients can be invited and processed, and the fact that we are now poised to roll it out to the entire eligible pre-diabetic population across Humber and North Yorkshire population footprint fills me with great excitement. The potential improvement we can make to the overall health of the population and the opportunity for other programmes across England to share in this new opportunity is endless. We also learned that even with clear instruction and parameters, in this case text messaging, some people will misunderstand so in future iterations we are looking to integrate email and electronic postal solutions on future versions. We do need to acknowledge digital exclusion too – no solution is perfect, and we didn’t get to all the patients, but we got to a situation where instead of sending out hundreds of postal invites a practice sends out only a handful, so it’s more cost effective, and leads to huge time savings. With a 1.6 million total population of the region, if we extrapolate the figures that’s a lot of people’s whose lives can be changed and while we have a large footprint, but we are not as densely populated as other geographical areas who could see a far higher volume of patients in a much smaller area. Scott Walker will discuss the key learnings from the successful pilot study determining the impact of using technology to increase patient uptake of healthy lifestyle programmes such as the NDPP during a live webinar on November 22nd 2022. Register to attend this webinar to learn more about the project findings and the implications for your practice or healthcare setting. For more information about using Meddbase for your healthcare management requirements, call +44 (0) 207 482 6290 or email [email protected]  

Meddbase in Healthcare Leader: ICB-level text scheme boosts referrals
October 27, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Healthcare Leader. Read the full article on Healthcareleadernews.com

ICB-level text scheme boosts diabetes referrals ten-fold

ICB-level texts prompting patients to engage with health intervention programmes brought about a ten-fold increase in referrals to a diabetes prevention service, a pilot study has shown. Conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, the ICB-level intervention saw the number of patients referred to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) rise from 32 referrals per month to 363 (1,034%). According to a study authors, the findings indicate how using technology at ICB-level can improve patient engagement without adding to GP workload. The ICB identified 795 patients across four practices who were eligible for the NDPP, and sent automated texts over two weeks in January 2022 informing patients of their eligibility. In addition to a spike in referrals, the study saw a 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme, rising from 16 patients to 69 in the first month of the study. This continued over three months, with an average of 45 patients each month attending their first session, up by 181% on the baseline 16 per month. The NDPP launched in 2015, and is typically accessed via GP referral, NHS Health Check or self-referral. It supports people with pre-diabetes to change their lifestyle, with data suggesting it can help cut a person’s chances of developing type 2 diabetes by 37%. The authors said that although it is common for patient comms to be managed at practice level, it ‘might not be the most efficient or effective’ means, given the time-cost and expertise needed. The study said: ‘Utilising technology to enable an ICB to invite patients from multiple GP practices at once also appears to have unlocked a number of efficiencies, saving GP practices time and money.’ It added that responsibility for the pilot sat with the ICB’s engagement officer ‘meaning that patients benefited without increasing the burden on GP practice staff’. It also suggested that the software it used – Meddbase – allowed the ICB to quickly identify and invite patients, while also mitigating against the risk of digital exclusion. Scott Walker, the ICB’s senior partnership officer for diabetes, said: ‘Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say that we will have enough patients to start a group. In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions.’ And Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and clinical lead for diabetes at the ICB, said: ‘This pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so they could identify, invite and refer patients that would otherwise have been missed. The result was far greater uptake as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. ‘Given the current capacity challenges within general practice and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes to the NHS, the findings here could have a huge impact.’

Meddbase in Building Better Healthcare: Texts prompt increase in referrals
October 26, 2022

Meddbase's pilot study with NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB on using technology to improve Diabetes prevention referrals has been featured in Building Better Healthcare. Read the full article on Buildingbetterhealthcare.com.

Texts prompt increase in referrals to NHS diabetes programme

A pilot study of 795 pre-diabetic patients has shown the significant potential of text messaging to engage patients with health intervention programmes. The study was designed to explore whether using the latest digital communications software, and managing it at an Integrated Care Board (ICB) level, is more effective than traditional postal invites when it comes to engaging patients in healthy lifestyle programmes. Conducted by NHS Humber and North Yorkshire Integrated Care Board, with support from its clinical technology partner, Meddbase; the pilot led to an increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) of more than 1,000%. It found that using patient identification tools and automated text message prompts led to:
  • A 1,000%-plus increase in NDPP referrals – from an average of 32 referrals per month to 363 per month
  • A 331% increase in the number of patients attending at least one session of the NDPP programme (defined as ‘Milestone 1’) - with the previous monthly average of 16 patients rising to 69 in the first month of the study
  • A 181% increase in the number of patients attending sessions over a three-month period; with the findings showing an average of 45 patients reaching Milestone 1 each month, compared with the pre-study baseline average of 16
The results from the study and the key learnings for ICBs, including the importance of data quality and the need to facilitate patient choice, are explored in detail in a new white paper report entitled It’s your GP texting: Utilising technology at ICB level to deliver a tenfold increase in referrals to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme.

Patient engagement

And the findings demonstrate how utilising technology at ICB level has the potential to deliver huge increases in patient engagement in healthy lifestyle programmes, such as the NDPP. The NDPP was developed by NHS England and Diabetes UK and offers patients at risk of type 2 diabetes free support from an evidence-based lifestyle programme. Some two million people in the UK are classed as having pre-diabetes, meaning they are likely to develop the condition if they do not change their lifestyle. To date, one million people have followed the programme, with data showing that it reduces the chances of developing diabetes by 37%, but can only have the desired impact with patient participation. The study was conducted using software from Meddbase, an advanced clinical management provider.  
The Meddbase system enables ICBs to identify eligible patients and schedule text promptsThe Meddbase system enables ICBs to identify eligible patients and schedule text prompts

Capturing information

The technology was used to enable the ICB’s engagement officer to quickly identify eligible patients, check them against criteria, and then schedule text message prompts, while also capturing information to update Electronic Patient Records. Commenting on the pilot, Scott Walker, senior partnership officer for diabetes at NHS Humber and North Yorkshire ICB, said: “We’ve seen phenomenal success with this pilot, which was driven by user need. “Previously, we had to wait to achieve the critical mass required to make our diabetes prevention programme viable, but we can now confidently say we will have enough patients to start a group. “In fact, the success of the pilot has given us the confidence to bring in additional human resources to manage patient conversions. That’s the beauty of this solution - the untapped potential is huge.”

A huge impact

Dr Tom Milligan, a GP and the clinical lead for diabetes in Humber and North Yorkshire, added: “Before this study, I thought we were doing NDPP referrals well. But, in fact, we were missing hundreds of patients with pre-diabetes. “The software used for this pilot enabled the ICB to conduct advanced searches for the first time, so we could identify, invite, and refer patients who would otherwise have been missed. “The result was far greater uptake of the NDPP as well as significant time saved for clinical staff. “Given the current capacity challenges within General Practice, and the cost to the NHS of lifestyle-related conditions like type 2 diabetes, the findings here could have a huge impact.”

Is There A Perfect Release Day For Medical Software?
October 3, 2022

As Meddbase customers may already know, we update and release a new version of our Meddbase medical software every month like clockwork. You have probably guessed that an enormous amount of work and planning goes on behind the scenes to enable each and every new feature and upgrade we release. But here we want to talk you through the unseen planning and decision-making process that went into determining our release schedule.  How did we identify the perfect release day? It's not as straightforward as you may think. The process of releasing new versions of Meddbase is something which has taken a lot of forethought - and picking a perfect release day that will always suit our customers, month in, month out, is one of the seemingly small decisions which required a great deal of consideration. The timings and conventions around releasing new software versions may be a mystery to you, and you may wonder if it is really necessary to think about something as seemingly straightforward as which day to choose for software release dates - let alone write a blog post about it. However just like with any other aspect of running an online patient record system, nothing about our software releases can be left to chance and every possibility must be thought through and tested, to make sure our customers are always getting the most convenience possible from our service, and that patient care is protected from potential disruption.

Typical Software Release Rules

For a long time we followed the simple industry conventions and rules around software releases; we would wait until a release was ready, give our clients the correct amount of notice, and release on the day that made the most sense for that specific release. This would obviously vary from one release to the next, but we held to some fairly common sense conventions: Don’t release software on a Friday night This is to ensure that any potential instability can be remedied without delay, and that if a customer needs support when using a new feature, they don't have to wait until after the weekend. Don’t release software on a Sunday night Mondays often involve heavier workloads for our clients and we would not want you to start your Monday morning adapting to change on top of tackling your usual to do list. Account for public holidays We understand the healthcare sector is a 24/7/365 industry but holidays can still be disruptive for many reasons, and are best avoided for software releases, especially when it comes to medical software. This way of approaching Meddbase releases worked well for quite a long time, but as our company expanded and our customers' businesses grew, we recognised that putting a stringent process, with predictability and reliability, into the release schedule would create an improvement for everyone.

Picking a Perfect Release Day

A large amount of work and research was done within the Meddbase development team to make a new release schedule possible. Once we had the potential to release on a cadence of our choice, the question then became, what exactly should that cadence be? We understood that releasing too frequently means the pace of change becomes hard to keep up with for our customers, particularly in this space where change control is vital. But release too infrequently, and branch management becomes more of a concern, QA takes a prohibitively long time and the amount of change contained in any one release becomes an issue. To balance these extremes, we settled on a monthly release cadence. Once we’d made that decision we started talking about what the monthly calendar should look like.
Every month the Meddbase team:
  • Completes the development tasks for the upcoming release
  • Processes the changes into a QA environment allowing enough time to test all new features and functionality
  • Allows enough time to write release notes and other documentation to keep customers fully briefed on the changes they can expect to see
  • Communicates to customers, giving the correct notice period ahead of the release
We continued to take into account the release day conventions but wanted to identify a single ‘release day’ to give customers as much certainty as possible  - and we quickly realised that finding the perfect release day includes all sorts of extra variables to factor in. We had to make sure as far as possible we could release on a regular cadence, and that we could be confident that all of the tasks above could happen in that release period. We settled on releasing on the last Monday evening of every month. Let's talk you through why we did that. Why don't we release on the same date every month? This doesn’t work because the date can fall at any point during the week - often that date would be a weekend or a day of the week that wouldn't work for us or our customers. Why don't we simply release as close as possible to that set date, but on a day of the week that meets all of our known needs? We found, looking across a whole year, that this would lead to a lot of variability on the timing of our release, and additionally would create a lot of overhead figuring out exactly when that would be each month - when so many deadlines hang off a single date it helps to have that date be as consistent as possible. So we decided we should explore pinning release day to a certain day of the week. This way we can always be sure of the day of the week that we’ll release, and can plan a year ahead to organise our calendars, and set a nice rhythm for the release processes that is safe and predictable. Why did we choose Monday as release day? This comes down to practicality; Mondays are the best day of the week for us to release. That day matches up well with our internal processes and means that we can be on hand for the remainder of the week for anything that might be required as a follow up to the release. All we has to do was come up with a strategy for dealing with bank holidays, which was that we would release the following day in the case of a Bank Holiday, and we could then guarantee our staff and customers a set release date for the entire year ahead.

Introducing Medication Delivery by Meddbase
July 27, 2022

As a pharmacist, like many of my colleagues and other clinicians, I have first-hand experience of the frustration caused by poorly integrated or inaccessible technology; I know how it feels to struggle to get the information I need to safely care for my patients.  Seeing technology hamper rather than facilitate patient care is one of the reasons I chose to work at Meddbase. From the outset, Meddbase was founded to provide an integrated and easily accessible yet secure cloud-based electronic medical record (EMR) solution - an unusual concept back in 2005 when Meddbase was first deployed.  Of course digital-first health innovations have, over the last 10 years, been at the forefront of healthcare here in the UK and internationally, whether that be within large hospital groups or small private practices [1,2], and we have all witnessed the way in which the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the drive to provide effective virtual healthcare. The latest innovation to be built into the Meddbase application, Medication Delivery, helps do just that.  Meddbase Medication Delivery is a new totally paperless prescribing feature within Meddbase. This feature offers straightforward integrated dispensing of prescriptions, with a free delivery service. This ground-breaking feature builds on our company mission to foster healthier lives, and ensures healthcare remains as accessible as possible through digital innovation by ensuring patients receive the medication they need. Using the Medication Delivery feature prescriptions are created electronically without the need to follow up with a paper signature. They are then fulfilled and dispatched straight to the nominated address on a same-day delivery basis, at no extra cost. Through our partnership with Signature Pharmacy, we have already run a successful pilot of the new service with several of our clients and the functionality has been extremely well-received, with clients commenting that the feature is simple to use and ensures patients safely receive their medication when they need it, making clinicians and patients lives easier, and helping mitigate barriers and delays to treatment.   In a world where technology is at our fingertips, and is a crucial part of our day-to-day lives, the delivery of medication and the creation of online prescriptions may seem straightforward. However, with any healthcare provision security and safety is paramount from a data and operational perspective. The Meddbase Medication Delivery functionality is therefore fully compliant with legislation including The Human Medicines Regulations 2012 [3] ensuring it is a secure healthcare solution you can easily incorporate into your organisation.     So, what’s the catch? Digital innovation when not implemented well and integrated into existing workflows has been well publicised in causing disruption and barriers to care, providing a solution to one problem but creating several problems for clinicians and caregivers to solve. [5] This includes evidence suggesting digital-first video consultation solutions can increase GP workload by up to 25% [4]. It is widely recognised that seamless integration and user experience are key when adopting new technical solutions to avoid situations of clinician burnout and increased workload.   When developing the Medication Delivery feature, as with our video consultation (Telemedicine) feature, we followed a pragmatic approach to facilitating a seamless user experience. We worked closely with our users to design and introduce this extra functionality to the product and into clinical workflows avoiding unnecessary clicks. When asking a recent pilot customer what they thought of the feature they commented that it is “a seamless process, and it integrates with Meddbase really well, so you prescribe, you get a view of what the prescription will look like and then it’s a click and it’s done.”  As a pharmacist and and health informatics professional, I welcome this move toward safer, more streamlined and more effective patient care. The Meddbase Medication Delivery feature is now available to all new and existing UK clients. If you have any questions regarding the Meddbase Medication Delivery feature or wider Meddbase configuration questions, please do not hesitate to contact our client account management team via email or our support team via our helpdesk ticketing system.  If you’d like to join the thousands of clinicians and medical staff all over the world who use Meddbase, get in touch with our sales team at [email protected] or call +44 (0)20 7482 6290. 
References:
[1] https://www.longtermplan.nhs.uk/publication/nhs-long-term-plan/ [2] https://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/banks-healthcare-will-become-digital-first-2022-zoom-healthcare-lead-says [3] https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2012/1916/regulation/219/made [4] https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/550866/Wachter_Review_Accessible.pdf [5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7327596/

Customers’ Top Five Config Tips – Get More out of Meddbase in just 5 Minutes
April 28, 2022

One of the things we hear often hear from customers when talking about Meddbase is just how configurable and bespoke the system is.

Just like when choosing an important piece of clothing, buying off the peg may be a quick fix but being measured up by a tailor, and getting something that's bespoke and of the highest quality will last you for many years to come.

A software system like Meddbase can be tailored to suit your needs too - and we have done so for multiple clients over the years. So with the help of our account managers and clients we've compiled our top 5 most popular config tips for Medbase users - these are small, fast and easily actionable changes which have a big impact on your workflow and efficiency every day.

These often overlooked pieces of configuration can make a big impact on system usability. The team have picked these from their implementations experience.

Calling on all of our discussions with clients who have successfully implemented the system, we have collected 5 Top Config Tips that take under 5 minutes. Each is tried and tested and has come recommended straight from our customer-facing team:  

1. Customise Your Meddbase Home Page

Meddbase Homepage Customised You have the option to streamline the tile options on the Meddbase Start Page removing those tiles that are not needed for groups of users or certain roles. You can also move less frequently-used tile options behind other tiles to achieve a simpler home page layout. Create new tiles and add these to the homepage to minimise the number of clicks a user needs to complete an action in the system. You can also add hyperlinks to tiles. Useful hyperlinks may include those to company policies, our knowledge base or training material such as videos. For more information on how to configure start page layouts on the home page please refer to this knowledge base article on our helpdesk. If not in use at your organisation you can also disable the messaging feed on the right hand of the screen by navigating to Admin>Configuration>Application and disabling the following checkbox: Show message checkbox  

2. Customising Page Layouts

For patient, appointment, clinician and company records. Much like the Start Page tiles, you can reorder, remove and add to the layouts of Meddbase, including patient and clinician records (and anywhere you see the following in the top left of the screen: Layout Button Screenshot ) Removing sections can help simplify screens and eliminate data entry in fields others may not reference, whilst reordering sections can help facilitate workflows and ensure the right information is shown to the right person at the right time. For more details regarding the adding and reporting of custom fields see the following knowledge base article on our helpdesk. The dimensions of sections can also be edited to eliminate scrollbars on menus such as the patient details page as shown below. Lengthening the height of sections will reduce or eliminate scrolling making all options immediately visible. Edit Section Screenshot  

3. Email from your organisation’s domain

As part of your day-to-day clinical care and operations, you are likely to need to email patients and/or employees. We understand that you would like to use your organisation’s email domain or have emails appear as they come from your organisation. There are two ways you can do this using Meddbase: Email Settings Screenshot
  1. Our advised and preferred method is for Meddbase to be configured using your SMTP settings. This means adding your email SMTP details (which you can obtain from your IT team or email provider) to Meddbase via Admin>Configuration>Email>SMTP shown above.
  2. Using the Meddbase company SMTP and asking your email provider to make SPF changes is the other method. This method works by spoofing Meddbase emails to appear as coming from your email, this is less preferable. More details of this method can be found in this knowledge base article.
If you are looking to use your domain/email address then you need to add the email address into the Sender fields under Automated email and Manual email as described in this knowledge base article Running reports via URLs  

4. Running reports via URLs – Microsoft Excel and other platforms

There are a wealth of reporting possibilities using our built-in Meddbase reporting feature. Reports can be built by users via a supported UI meaning your data is quickly and easily accessible. Data accessed via Meddbase reports can then be extracted using unique URLs via various platforms from Tableau to Microsoft Excel. For a quick guide to simply pull report data into Meddbase into Microsoft Excel reference this step to step knowledge base article.
 

5. Medical history PDF Previews

Research shows that clinician decision-making with incomplete patient medical history presents significant clinical risk and can lead to patient harm. In turn, we understand that time is precious and efficiently reviewing documents during a consultation is a difficult task. This is why Meddbase can now preview PDF documents in the Medical History section of a patient record. This allows clinicians to more efficiently review documents uploaded to a patient's record. Documents such as third party discharge summaries and letters may not have data directly entered into Meddbase and therefore, once uploaded, previewing these documents helps ensure clinicians can quickly review a more complete patient record. To enable this tick the check box shown below and found in Admin>Configuration>Document>Medical History. Medical History PDF Preview Checkbox

Looking For Other Healthcare Software Config Options? Get In Touch!

Meddbase remains highly flexible and in turn configurable to your business needs. I hope the above 5 tips help you to make high impact improvements to the user experience of all your users in turn helping with change management and system adoption. For more guidance regarding Meddbase configuration check out our knowledge base which contains hundreds of articles at your disposal. The account management and training teams at Meddbase are always on hand to facilitate your business growth and clinical care using Meddbase, and for those of you who are not yet using Meddbase we hope you allow us to show you how Meddbase can help you. If you have any questions regarding the functionality detailed within this blog post or other configuration questions about Meddbase, please do not hesitate to contact our support team via our helpdesk ticketing system. If you'd like to join the thousands of clinicians and medical staff all over the world who use Meddbase, get in touch with our sales team at [email protected] or call +44 (0)20 7482 6290.

Favourite Features of Meddbase: The Billing Rules Date Sensitivity Upgrade
March 29, 2022

We recently made some upgrades to the Billing and Contract Management System in Meddbase, an area of the application that's always been of great benefit to our customers in a multitude of ways, allowing the configuration of some exceptionally complex billing rules.
In fact I’ve seen customers find both expected and unexpected ways to use the features to build automations and time saving mechanisms, some of which I couldn't have imagined myself - even after seven years of logging into the system and working on it as a Product Manager every day. The Billing Rules System has always been one of my favourite Meddbase features, as it allows customers to save time during the booking workflow, meaning users have longer to build a rapport with and care for their patients, as well as ensuring that every booking follows the rules set out by the clinic automatically, meaning that fewer appointments need to be rescheduled, cancelled, or written off. Perfection is a journey, not a destination But the fact is, no matter how great something is, it must continuously evolve to remain relevant. We came to realise that prices and booking restrictions change over time. Contracts get updated yearly, promotions or clinical drives can be seasonal, subcontractor arrangements expire – the list goes on and on. That’s why I'm so excited to have been involved in scoping and rolling out the 'Date Range Applicability Billing Rules'. Maybe not the catchiest name but the functionality is a game changer. This simple configuration option allows our customers to be able to set effective start and end dates for the billing rules which make up their contracts, allowing seamless transition of prices and rules as time passes, without the need set a reminder to make those changes, or to set aside precious time out of hours to make sure that bookings can proceed correctly when things do change.
This is a great example of how we work collaboratively with our customers to pinpoint improvements that we can make to allow them to continue to expand their businesses and streamline their processes, while we improve and evolve the Meddbase product, meaning we can all help more patients. This is timely reminder, quite literally, that the product we’re building, and have been building for 17 years, incorporates insight from our customers every step of the way, because when our customers' businesses grow, we grow with them.

Statement Regarding Cyber Security Risk Mitigation During Ukraine Crisis
March 7, 2022

Medical Management Systems' Statement Regarding Cyber Security Risk Mitigation, 7th March 2022

 

Due to the conflict in Ukraine and the heightened threat level towards countries supporting Ukraine, the UK's National Cyber Security Centre has asked all UK companies to stay alert and closely monitor their cyber security space. This statement addresses data security measures we are taking in light of the current situation.

What does this mean for you as a Meddbase user?

With regards to the use of Meddbase, and the security and backup of your data, nothing has changed.

Medical Management Systems runs the majority of operations from within the UK including UK customers' data hosting - with additional hosting in the Republic Of Ireland, Canada and the USA serving customers in those geographical markets. Currently there are no specific threats to UK organisations, and Medical Management Systems is highly unlikely to be the target of any direct threats.

As an ISO 27001-certified provider, business continuity and data security is integral to our operations at all times and preparing for unforeseen circumstances is a standard element of our Infosec planning process.

How are we mitigating the heightened security risk?

Whilst we consider it highly unlikely for Medical Management Systems or our Meddbase product to become a specific target of cyber attacks, we are aware that services and infrastructure provided by our suppliers could potentially be disrupted. This includes business critical services such as internet service providers and data centres, which underpin the provision of Meddbase to our customers in the UK and overseas.

We would like to assure all our customers that we are closely monitoring the situation, are committed to following official guidelines and have policies in place to ensure continuity of operations based on several eventualities.

If one of our critical suppliers becomes unavailable, we have procedures in place to switch to a secondary provider with minimal interruption.Additionally, if one of our offices becomes unavailable, we have a secondary location acting as a 'warm site', which can be made fully operational within a few hours. Employees have the hardware and software capability to work from home whenever necessary.

We are aware that the current crisis is volatile and subject to change, and we are prepared to respond accordingly.

Meddbase - Key Security Facts

We have outlined a set of key points to pre-empt specific questions and concerns about the company, the product, and your data security at this time.

Backups
All client data (including but not limited to patient records, medical records, appointments, documents) continues to be replicated across our two Tier-3 data centres in close-to-real time. We take additional backups of data and systems' configuration daily, encrypt them and store all data at separate locations ensuring failover options should an emergency situation arise.

Anti-malware
Our anti-malware solution is deployed to all endpoints on our network and scans all devices in real-time.

Firewalls
Our firewalls come with Unified Threat Management capabilities and include intrusion prevention and detection, web and application filtering, data loss prevention, network discovery among other precautions.

Vulnerability Assessments and Patch Management
All of our servers are regularly scanned for vulnerabilities. Outputs of these are analysed and fix roll-outs are prioritised based on criticality.

Monitoring
We have a range of network and hardware sensors with pre-defined thresholds that alert our Incident Response Team when any suspicious activity is spotted, or the moment any of our critical systems are down.

Please feel free to contact us
Should you have any further questions related to this statement or if you believe you have noticed something suspicious, please raise a ticket for Support Team as soon as possible via existing client communication channels.

We are committed to continuing to support our customers and we are always on hand to assist and respond to your concerns.

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Will Temple
Managing Director
Medical Management Systems Ltd

Learn more about Meddbase Security Policies

Is Your Healthcare Business Ready – or Resistant – To Change?
January 13, 2022

For the first blog post of 2022 we want to cover something that's topical, and indeed typical, for people and businesses to contemplate in the month of January - the desire for change. While humans aren't renowned for their appetite for change, the New Year offers a unique chance to re-evaluate how we do things and ask ourselves if certain habits, processes and solutions are actually still working for us - or if they ever did. Whether in a personal or business setting, now is the time to make far-reaching changes that can revolutionise and overhaul the way our lives and businesses function and succeed. And as the hectic packed calendars that typify the run-up to the holiday period subside, the New Year usually offers the perfect time to schedule in these changes in practical terms too.

6 Quotes On Change That Will Inspire You To Embrace It

When you stop to think about it, Change is a concept that has inspired all the great thinkers, and 1001 famous quotes, including;
- Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change - Wayne Dyer - When you're finished changing, you're finished - Benjamin Franklin - The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change - Bill Clinton - Change is the law of life - John F. Kennedy
And possibly the most famous of them all:
- Be the change that you wish to see in the world - Mahatma Gandhi
But for our purposes, to look at how attitudes to change fit in with upgrading your healthcare software, let's take our inspiration from possibly the oldest known quote on change in existence.

- The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new

Socrates is said to have uttered these words over two and a half thousand years ago, yet they are startlingly relevant to changing software systems today. It seems that underlying human nature hasn't altered since the 5th century and change can still be associated with things people fear they are losing rather than the long-term gains. Helping you to understand the huge gains on offer when updating your patient records system and optimising your business processes is what we do, and have been doing for over 17 years. Our implementation team will help you use our software to build a new, safer, more streamlined and efficient healthcare business of any scale, from one to 1000 users. We also understand that you and your team will be continuing to manage your day to day workloads during the building phase, and therefore have limited energy and resources for the change in processes; we will help you channel your available time and energy as efficiently as possible, and build new systems and pathways designed to enhance your operation. The number of quotes that exist to persuade people that change is good is testimony to just how much persuading we all need at the outset. When it comes to the process of change in business applications, especially in a healthcare setting, the reticence can be especially hard to overcome. We understand that an Electronic Healthcare Records system like Meddbase inherently involves most of a customers' teams - from Accounts and Finance to Administration, Clinical, Customer Service and Governance. Closely managing business changes to a crucial aspect of multiple departments' working lives must be handled with strategy, security and consideration constantly at the forefront.

If Change is Scary, Change Management Can be Scarier

Change management is defined as 'a collective term for approaches to prepare, support, and help individuals, teams, and organisations in making organisational change.' This makes it clear that change management is focused around the journey people are taken on during the adoption of any new systems or practices. Those who aren't familiar with the phrase 'change management' may find the idea even scarier than the concept of change itself. But when it comes to moving over to Meddbase, we prefer to define Change Management more simply as 'helping to make the process of change as easy as possible for you, using our resources and experience' which, let's face it, sounds far less scary - and actually something to welcome rather than avoid. We know that most people either fear, avoid or resist change in many aspects of life, and going through the process of change in business applications, especially in a healthcare setting, must be managed extremely carefully as it such a high impact change. Business productivity, patient safety and staff morale must all remain uncompromised and that's where the expert management of change is the key.

Where There’s A Will, There’s A Way

So, there are plenty of sayings about change, but the old adage ‘Where there’s a will, there’s a way’, is probably more famous than all of them put together. Psychologists have identified the fact that change actually requires both the will and the way in order to work successfully. Studies show that it takes less energy for your brain to use the areas related to habits and instinct than to run the more complex decision-making and problem-solving areas and that leads to people being resistant to change at a biological level.  But the final old adage we will quote in this post is the most overused phrase of them all: insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. If something is not working for you or your business, it won't fix itself. If you've now got the will to make that change happen, Meddbase can show you the way. If you’d like to join the thousands of clinicians and medical staff all over the world who use Meddbase, get in touch with our sales team at [email protected] or call +44 (0)20 7482 6290.  

How Meddbase Serves Occupational Health Software Users
December 7, 2021

Occupational health means different things to different people, depending on their role and their industry. Something that we’re always thinking about when building out the Meddbase software platform are the needs of the user. These needs can best be summed up by asking ourselves the following three questions:
  1. Who are our users?
  2. What do they need to do?
  3. Why do they need to do it?
In our experience the more detail you have around those three questions, the better equipped you are to create a software solution that your users will be happy with, and that will meet or even exceed their expectations. Thinking specifically about occupational health, the needs of the users we serve using our Meddbase EHR software can vary considerably, and that’s because in an occupational health setting you are trying to serve many different user types, including, but not limited to;
  • HR Business Partners
  • Line managers
  • Health and Safety Leads
  • Employees
  • Governance Heads
And the list goes on, and continues to grow, particularly as we see increased focus on occupational health as a result of the need to respond to the challenges of Covid. Thankfully, as a software provider you don’t need to worry about all of these user types all the time, because they often access different parts of an EHR software system due to their roles being so different. Often we find that these roles can be split between companies in heavy industry, where health and safety often leads the occupational health effort, and office-based industries which are often lead by their HR business partners. Health and Safety-led occupational health users tend to be more interested in:
  • Assessing and monitoring the health of their at-risk workforce through health surveillance programmes to ensure that job roles aren’t affecting employees' health negatively
  • Handling a large volume of care requirements with efficiency, ensuring booked clinic days are utilised fully with the highest priority cases
  • Reporting on up-to-the-minute accurate datasets which describe and, if possible, even predict the future health status of employee populations to ensure high levels of compliance are maintained
HR-led occupational health users are interested in;
  • Monitoring the health and wellbeing of their workforce to keep morale and engagement high
  • Ensuring a high level of care provision for each employee engaged with occupational health, to get the most out of each referral
  • Utilising Case Management referral programmes to prevent absence and handle it deftly when if does occur
  • Ensure a high digital engagement with the employee to correctly capture consent and other critical details during the course of a referral
These paint very different pictures of who our user is, what they need to do, and why they need to do it, so it’s important that the software we develop serves each of them, is aware of these nuances, and correctly accounts for them. With many years of experience in the sector, working alongside key strategic clients, Meddbase has a successful track record in solving a myriad of common and unique problems for all of these types of OH user. This has allowed us to grow with our customers, and continue to help them to tackle new and emerging challenges they may face, as a partner and using a problem-solving mentality, rather than merely as an out-of-the-box software provider. If you'd like to join the thousands of clinicians and medical staff all over the world who use Meddbase, get in touch with our sales team at [email protected] or call +44 (0)20 7482 6290.

7 of the Best Things About Meddbase – As Chosen By Meddbase Staff
November 1, 2021

  To mark Meddbase's 17th birthday this week we asked our staff to name their favourite things about the Meddbase application; here we share the top 7 answers - from speed to security, via pathways and patients, our team have a few features that stand out as making Meddbase the best EHR platform available.

1. Superior Speed

'I love how fast the Meddbase application generally is. We always get comments saying “is it really that quick?” - and yes, is it. And it stays fast even with a vast amount of data. Seeing how snappy the main side by side diaries are for our largest customers' data load always impresses me. None of our competitors ever come close to it.'

2. Right Data, Right Place, Right Time

'The best thing about Meddbase is the application's ability to put the right information in front of the right person at the right time using the pathways system, referrals and task management, which all allow data to be shared and moved between the people that need to see it, while remaining safe and secure. We let clients manage those data flows as they need to which accomplishes all sorts of goals and aligns with our own philosophy and values.'

3. Secure Document Sharing

'Meddbase's secure document sharing is a simple, elegant solution to a common problem that might otherwise lead our customers to spend a lot of money on a standalone solution  - or even take the easy way out and do something less safe and secure. Meddbase document sharing makes collaboration easy and ultra secure at the same time.'

4. The Flexibility of the Cloud

'Being a cloud-based system is the biggest plus for me when I compare Meddbase to other software systems I have used when working overseas. The last few years have made this benefit even more valuable, but the ability to configure a system that allows practices to be informed at all times and not be limited to being in a single location, ultimately provides better care for their patients. It’s also an extremely flexible system that allows clients to customise the application to suit their needs, and not be limited to out of the box designs.'

5. Perfect Pathways

'These are a smart and powerful way to drive process forward in a consistent and quality-assured way.

Meddbase pathways offer functional breadth in enabling a wide range of actions from sending a questionnaire, through uploading a document to booking a process. Control in defining the relative timing of when tasks should be done. Wide engagement in being able to allocate tasks to roles, patients and employer managers. All of this is capable of being elegantly wrapped together within a single workflow.'

6. Pertinent Patient Questionnaires

'Meddbase allows patient questionnaires to be automatically triggered by appointment bookings, streamlining an otherwise manually-initiated task. The appropriate questionnaires can be matched to a specific appointment type, ensuring that the right questions can be asked in the right appointment context.

This enables the patient to take control of answering questions at a time to suit them and forms part of a smooth information flow on completion to become part of the patient record available for clinician review. In other words convenience for the patient, and convenience for the doctor.'

7. Superb Slot Finder

'When booking an appointment, the Meddbase slot finder provides a simple tool with a compact set of steps to facilitate making an appointment booking.

Even within this procedural simplicity, it still offers a superb set of filters to help find the best appointment slot for the patient - meaning speed and thoroughness are both achieved.'

Of course these 7 superior features of the Meddbase electronic EHR are just a small selection of the impressive functions on offer. Each of our customers have their own hero Meddbase features that save them countless hours of administrative time, help them give better care to their patients, and facilitate their business processes.   If you'd like to join the thousands of clinicians and medical staff all over the world who use Meddbase, get in touch with our sales team at [email protected] or call +44 (0)20 7482 6290.

Employee Health Record Solution Secures £2.25m Investment to Expand Online Platform
October 8, 2021

London, October 8th 2021

Employee health record solution secures £2.25m investment to expand online platform

Medical Management Systems (MMS) will use the funding from the independent asset manager BOOST&Co to develop its online platform and secure new contracts with international organisations. Medical Management Systems Ltd (MMS), the software company behind the UK’s leading online employee health record solution, Meddbase, has secured a £2.25m investment from the alternative lender, BOOST&Co. Beginning its journey with a single office in north London more than 20 years ago, Meddbase now operates globally, allowing healthcare professionals to securely carry out patient-led services using any web-enabled device. To date, the software has processed more than 16 million patient records and in 2021, holds over 900 million patient appointments, processing more than £1 billion in revenue for its customers. The investment from BOOST&Co will enable MMS to continue to develop its practice management and patient record system, as well as expand the online platform’s capability to secure contracts within new geographical markets and verticals. Alongside this investment, the product has also been named as a finalist for Healthcare Technology Provider of the Year in the 2021 Health Investor Awards. BOOST&Co has chosen to invest in MMS due to its superior product and extensive track-record with reputable customers such as UnitedHealthcare, Bupa, and the NHS. It is also anticipated that several development roles will be generated within the business, as part of this investment in growth. Oliver Reece, principal at BOOST&Co says: “We’re delighted to be able to provide this support for MMS and are excited to work with the team through this next chapter of their journey. MMS represents a great example of how investment can accelerate growth and we are pleased to support the business as it expands internationally and pursues a strategy that is clear and well thought through.” Will Temple, Managing Director at MMS says: “Since 2004 we have been pioneering the development of cloud-native systems capable of managing every aspect of medical businesses securely online. Our mission to join up healthcare processes, using our market-leading platform Meddbase, has been built on continuous innovation. There is always more work to be done to remain at the forefront of technological advances in healthcare, and this investment from BOOST&Co will enable us to continue to expand the product offering and further grow the business.” About Meddbase and Medical Management Systems Medical Management Systems Ltd is a British software house which began work on Meddbase, its pioneering cloud-native patient record management system, in 2004. The company is fuelled by the simple vision of revolutionising healthcare technology using a SaaS delivery model, and over the last 16 years has created an industry-changing product. Meddbase is the first new entrant to the UK's NHS GPIT Futures Framework in over 12 years, and the only online supplier on the catalogue. For more information on Meddbase, visit Meddbase.com. About BOOST&Co BOOST&Co is a leading provider of growth capital for innovative, fast-growing UK SMEs. The independent asset manager, which offers loans of £2m to £10m, covers all sectors, with a strong track record in TMT (technology, media and telecommunications). The lender has offices in London, Manchester, Bristol, Cambridge and Cape Town, with additional dealmakers in Birmingham, Reading and Leeds. It manages funds on behalf of large institutional investors, including insurance companies and pension funds. For more information about BOOST&Co, visit boostandco.com  

Meddbase on TechRound: Top Tips for Startups on How to Approach PR
August 10, 2021

Meddbase Head of Communications Jaillan Yehia has been quoted in a feature on Tech startup website TechRound, covering on the best way for new startups in the technology industries to approach their PR.  Read the full article on TechRound.
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PR Secrets Revealed: Top Tips for Startups on How to Approach PR

“Not all tech companies have the budget or the bandwidth to hire a dedicated PR agency in the start-up phase, but that doesn’t mean they can’t approach their own PR with the same professional mindset – and basic toolkit – an agency would use. Firstly, never underestimate the number of times you will field the same questions about your technology product or service. However small and busy your team is, make an effort to write a set of key messages that define your points of difference, as well as the answers to all the obvious questions you expect to be asked in your first years of business. Doing this up front means you can reach for the same carefully crafted answers whenever a PR opportunity arises. Secondly, remember how important it is to state the obvious. Create a boilerplate about your organisation and add it to any corporate communications; not unlike an elevator pitch this is a short statement summarising your company and offering, so you don’t leave anyone guessing. Spending time on these PR basics in the start-up phase will save countless hours of work later and define your brand from day one, ensuring a clear and consistent message which can be finessed as your business grows.”

Jaillan Yehia Head of Communications, Meddbase

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Choosing A Webcam For Telemedicine: Our Top Tech Buying Tips
June 21, 2021

Given the additional reliance we have all placed on tech devices since the start of the pandemic, your thoughts may well have turned to tech upgrades for your practice or home-working setup. The huge spike in remote working means that webcams have become a highly sought-after tech accessory across in all industries, selling out and being subject to surge pricing in the early days of Covid-19. Within healthcare the importance of a reliable high-quality webcam that enables your patients to feel comfortable and connected to you, as if you were in the consultation room with them face to face, has become even more pronounced. Our customers often ask us for recommendations for a specific webcam that will work well with our Vidyo Telemedicine integration, so we thought today we would offer some general tips on choosing a webcam that is suitable for telemedicine and to help demystify some of the surrounding jargon. After all, we know you have plenty more important tasks than researching frames per second, or screen resolution during your working day. When it comes to selecting a new webcam, there are two key numbers that are going to be thrown around in the specs, whether you're shopping on online or in store, and those are FPS (Frames Per Second) where you'll see numbers like 24, 30 or 60 listed, and Resolution which is slightly more confusing, as the format of this number changes and options include 480 and 720 to 1080 through to Full HD (1920 x 1080p). These days you can get 4k too - that's not much use for consultations, and designed more for professional content creators, but if you're running webinars, a YouTube Channel or sharing your expertise online it could be an option. 

Choosing A Webcam for Telemedicine: Consider FPS

This is how many individual pictures your webcam processes and displays every second. Put simply, the higher number is going to be better, and will result in a smoother video stream; the last thing you want is looking like a slideshow or freeze during your patient consultation. 
Frame rate/fps  Notes 
24  Supposedly the highest that the human eye can distinguish, in our experience it’s a good minimum to set, anything less is not good enough 
30  Many webcams fall into this realm, and it will work for most use cases 
60  Pretty high end for a webcam, if you’re looking for a professional experience and are willing to spend the extra, this is what to look for 
60+  You won’t get much benefit from anything over 60fps, unless you’re planning to use your webcam for creating high quality video content as well as consultations
 

Choosing A Webcam for Telemedicine: Research The Resolution

Resolution  Notes 
480p  This is the resolution in which DVDs were originally released. Today this would result in you feeling in need of a consultation - with an Optician  
720p  Was once called ‘HD’ – now it’s a barely decent minimum resolution for webcam and most built-in laptop cameras are at this resolution 
1080p  Also known as Full HD this is a ‘premium’ choice but fast becoming the accepted standard
4k  You won’t get very much benefit from spending the extra to get this feature when it comes to consultations 
'This doesn't apply to me, I recently upgraded my laptop / desktop computer, so I don't need a separate webcam' you may think. Well, the surprising thing about webcams is that even the most up to date PC, Mac, laptop or Macbook isn't guaranteed to have the webcam quality you would expect - many carry specs that haven't been updated for a decade.
For example even if you invested in the latest Macbook Air  - one of Apple's best-selling devices - you will still be stuck with a less than ideal 720p built-in camera. To put that in context, this flagship laptop has a sub-par built-in camera when compared to an iPhone 11, iPad Pro, or even Samsung's previous generation Galaxy S20 phone. In 2021 you could easily be using the same camera technology in your brand new laptop that you would have been using if you were innovative enough to run virtual consultations on your old laptop back in 2011. Windows users are in the same boat, with most PC's and Microsoft laptops sporting mediocre camera technology from the era before Zoom and Teams calls were a common feature of the modern world. This is easy to rectify by upgrading, and selecting a webcam by one of the respected webcam manufacturers, such as Logitech or Microsoft - though many other manufacturers are competing in this growing market. And while you're comparing refresh rates, and resolution, remember to also consider these other factors: Sound: You can have the best picture in the world but if the sound on your consultation is echoey, tinny, or difficult to decipher, you are going to run into problems, and unhappy patients. Depending on your exact working set-up, you maybe want to consider a webcam with a built-in microphone, ideally with ANC  - active noise cancellation - so you can achieve a natural and distraction-free sound quality. Working Hours: Many webcams struggle in low light, meaning if you specialise in after hours appointments you may have a very grainy picture. Outdated webcams can also suffer, offering blurry images. Screen Placement: When using a built-in webcam, the angle of your computer screen dictates the angle of your camera - this may not necessarily be the ideal angle for both note-taking and seeing your patient properly. A separate webcam, perhaps with a tripod, could give you far more flexibility. Wide Angle: In some circumstances, especially where multiple participants are involved in a consultation, you will have more options if you choose a wide-angled webcam. Plastic vs Glass: Look out for a glass lens as this will always be better quality, produce crisper images and be more durable than a plastic lens which is a telltale sign of a budget product. Patient Privacy: Accidentally leaving your web cam on could be potentially embarrassing for most of us, but in a medical setting the importance of a secure and foolproof method of ensuring your webcam is off when you think it is, cannot be underestimated. An LED indicator that lets you know when the webcam is active is optimum, and some devices offer a built-in cover meaning it would not be physically possible to record, which is ideal for those running a combination of Telehealth consultations and in-person patient appointments from the same physical office. Internet Speeds: Even the best resolution and FPS on the latest webcam will become irrelevant if your internet connection - or that of the patient you are video calling - is poor.

Do You Actually Need A Webcam For Telemedicine?

And finally - just because you need a webcam, doesn't mean you actually need to buy a device labelled 'webcam'. That's because modern mobile phones, GoPro's and various other camera-ready devices are already equipped with the high-end camera tech needed to run virtual consultations, you often just need the software, or cables to connect them to your existing setup.

About Meddbase Telemedicine and Vidyo

Meddbase's partner, the VidyoConnect service, supports Telemedicine calls at a resolution up to 4K (3840 x 2160) though that is always based upon various specifications, such as available bandwidth, device computing capability, and device display resolution as well as third party compression and devices.
If you'd like to see our Telemedicine Software in action, or learn more about our web-native Practice Management Software, book a demo, or call our sales team on 0207 482 6290.
   

Why We Value User Feedback: Implementing UserVoice In Meddbase
June 17, 2021

In this blog post Meddbase Product Owner Sam Wood Explains why we value user feedback - and the story behind Meddbase's decision to implement UserVoice to gather more direct feedback from our customers. User feedback is important for any software company and for healthcare software such as Meddbase, that feedback is especially important. Hearing directly from our users is one of our most crucial sources of information, helping us to shape and drive the direction of our product. We value user feedback because it helps us to ground the decisions we make about which features and functions to prioritise in the development process in real world experience felt by our end users. There are lots of ways that we use the feedback we get from customers, and user feedback helps us to add context and detail to evergreen questions that remain front of mind as we work on adding features and finesse to our platform. Those questions are:

The Value of User Feedback: Who Uses Meddbase?

It’s very easy for a software company to make assumptions about who their users are, and it's also very dangerous. User feedback is an important part of making sure we don’t fall into the trap of taking our own assumptions at face value. Identifying exactly who your users are is critically important when developing software; the more accurate and detailed a picture we can build up of who our users are, the better informed we become about which features to develop, in which order, and how those features should look and feel to make that specific audience feel comfortable. By actively soliciting user feedback directly from customers we can get a far more accurate and three-dimensional sense of who they are and what roles they are performing within our client's organisations.

The Value of User Feedback: What Problems Are Our Users Facing?

Perhaps just as obvious a question on the surface but getting pinpointed user feedback lets us know which areas of the product and precisely which processes, our users are having issues with. We can take this further with more feedback as this enables us to pick out patterns and underlying issues that are much easier to spot from a high-level vantage point than when you are at the coal face of developing a product, and focused on the finer details. Often, we can uncover small inefficiencies that no individual person or user would ask us to make changes to correct, but by crowd-sourcing the wisdom of your wider user base some necessary changes become glaringly obvious. This result is only really possible if feedback is democratised to the point that anyone can give feedback if they are motivated to do so, and the barriers to doing so remain very low. Getting feedback directly from users gives us visibility on problems that customers are facing which we might not otherwise be aware of. As the world of digital healthcare changes, we of course try to keep abreast of all the changes that we should react to within the product, but there is simply no substitute for hearing directly from the mouths of those who are living with those changes day to day.

The Value of User Feedback: Why Are Users Choosing Meddbase?

Healthcare is a sector which is still relatively uncomfortable with technology when compared to other industries. This is definitely changing and currently that change is happening apace - and it is documented that a sea-change in attitudes to technology has been accelerated by Covid-19. With this fast-moving aspect to the health-tech industry it can be surprising which workflows and processes our users expect our software to automate, streamline, solve or facilitate, so we need to keep a close eye on which features are resulting in customers coming to us. To give a very straightforward example, the users choosing Meddbase due to our Telemedicine offering spiked in March 2020, but not all reasons for users choosing your product will be as easy to document as a global pandemic resulting in the need for remote consultations.

When It Comes To User Feedback, You Don't Know What You Don't Know

There is a particular set of intangible information that it’s hard to specifically ask people to give us information on; the things we don't know are an issue. Often the things that come up in customer feedback surprise us, and things that seem so mundane as to be almost invisible to the people using the software can, when pressed, be the areas in which they most wish to see change. Direct user feedback is a great source of both qualitative information and quantitative data that we can mine, to make sure we understand what our users are asking us to help them with. We want to make clear and informed decisions about the direction of the product and we don't want to work blind and guess which business challenges to solve next with our software - and more importantly - in which order. Sometimes we’d be right, but often without user feedback we’d find ourselves releasing features which don’t solve the problems that really matter, or worse, which create new problems. Ultimately, a good product owner will take on board a combination of these user equations - the Who, What and Why. And to complete the narrative, we need to involve two more variables in the feedback loop: When and How.

When and How Does User Feedback Matter?

When is an easy one; all feedback has a shelf life, and some is incredibly time-sensitive (for example feedback around our Covid Screening programme) but taking a snapshot of feedback and then closing the doors is of very little use. We need to constantly be asking for the most up to date problems, wants and wishes of all our users to keep the compass pointed North and make sure we’re up to date with the industry in general and our customers specifically. How has historically been the hardest question to answer, and getting it right is a constant work in progress. Ultimately, any interaction with a user is an opportunity to gather feedback and it’s always useful to gather that ad-hoc feedback when the opportunity presents itself. We’ve tried lots of ways in the past of gathering feedback and storing it internally, keeping it up to date with diligent note taking and curation. These initiatives always had limited scope and usefulness though because they relied on so many things happening in order to make them work properly. Having more steps required ultimately leads to more potential ‘leakage’ of feedback from the system. In a bid to remove steps from the process, and therefore opportunities for the feedback to get lost in the system, we’ve moved to a direct, open and democratic method of gaining, sharing and prioritising user feedback: UserVoice. Since launching UserVoice to our customers in May 2021, we have already heard from users that we wouldn’t normally hear from, and gained insights into problems that they are facing that we might not have known about by gathering feedback via traditional routes. Going forward, we are making our UserVoice platform a core pillar of our Product Backlog Prioritisation process and will be working to build engagement with our users through this platform to give them insight into what direction we are taking the Product, and how we’re using their feedback to help shape that direction. If you're a customer who would like to leave any feedback, please sign up to Meddbase UserVoice. If you'd like to read more from our product team, check out Sam's blog post on Case Management.  

Leading UK Healthcare SaaS Provider Meddbase Expands Into Canada
May 24, 2021

London, May 24th 2021 - Meddbase, the UK's leading cloud-based EHR platform, has signed ELNA Medical’s Medicentres clinics as its first Canadian client, adding the largest group of primary and specialty care clinics in Canada to its growing healthcare customer portfolio. Meddbase has been offering a pioneering cloud-native software package to private healthcare businesses for over 16 years, and increased demand for its product in the UK and overseas is now leading to international expansion into new markets and territories, including Canada. ELNA Medical is a network of 56 primary, specialty and occupational health care clinics, leveraged by advanced technologies. More than 800 medical professionals provide high-quality care in person and through telemedicine to more than one million Canadians and 1,500 organisations each year. Its clinics outside of Quebec, including their occupational health clinics are under the Medicentres banner. The Meddbase system has been implemented in the latter’s occupational health clinics. Will Temple, Managing Director of Medical Management Systems, the company behind Meddbase, comments: 'We are delighted to begin our expansion into the Canadian market by working with ELNA Medical, who share many of our own core values, and embody our vision to deliver first rate joined-up healthcare services seamlessly through technology across multiple locations. We welcome the opportunity to build on the Meddbase product with additional data hosting locations such as our new Quebec data hub, as well as increased international functionality such as multiple time zones and language support. We look forward to continuing the positive working relationship we have built with the team at Medicentres.' Wayne Samuels, General Manager of ELNA Medical’s Medicentres clinics adds: 'Our objective as an organisation is to persist in providing convenient and quick access to high quality care to our patients and corporate clients across the health spectrum, including personalised and preventive medicine. When seeking the ideal software suite, we turned to Meddbase and have found the implementation of the system to be excellent. Their experienced team has been flexible, organised, and well-prepared and we are excited to continue the rapport we have built with Meddbase as we work on further functionality and roll-outs.' About Meddbase and Medical Management Systems Medical Management Systems Ltd is a British software house which began work on Meddbase, its pioneering cloud-native patient record management system, in 2004. The company is fuelled by the simple vision of revolutionising healthcare technology using a SaaS delivery model, and over the last 16 years has created an industry-changing product. Meddbase consists of 15 million lines of code, holds over 900 million patient appointments, and has sent over 20 million appointment reminder texts. Meddbase is the first new entrant to the UK's NHS GPIT Futures Framework in over 12 years, and the only online supplier on the catalogue. About ELNA Medical ELNA Medical is a Quebec-based company that brings together the largest network of medical clinics in Canada, with over 800 medical professionals in 56 primary and specialty health care and occupational health clinics. Active since 2016, it provides primary and specialty health care covered by public health care insurance plans. True to its mission and innovative spirit, ELNA is committed to making a meaningful contribution to the health and well-being of every patient by providing personalised, easily accessible and exceptional-quality medical services, all supported by leading-edge technologies. ELNA Medical is associated with CDL Laboratories, a leader in the private laboratory industry in Quebec.  

Meddbase Named A Finalist at the HealthInvestor Awards 2021
May 19, 2021

London, U.K., May 19th 2021 - Leading online practice management system Meddbase has been named a finalist at the HealthInvestor Awards, in the category of Technology Provider of the Year.

The cloud-native software platform has been shortlisted on the basis of its ground-breaking work on an NHS-compliant integration designed to enable public and private sector healthcare organisations to share digital patient records for the first time. The award nomination highlights Meddbase’s unique vision for interoperability within healthcare technology, and commitment to capturing all aspects of the patient journey within one secure online platform. Meddbase’s Chief Information Officer and NHS Programme Lead Rebecca Trewinnard explains: ‘We have worked with NHS Digital to integrate some of Meddbase’s most exciting and pioneering private sector functionality with NHS public health, and create a breakthrough in integrated care records which is an absolute industry first. The development of this solution, offering independent GPs the ability to view their patients’ NHS records, will facilitate a more joined up approach to patient care.’ She continues: ‘Phase Two of our work allows independent GPs to access, read and act upon the NHS patient record and crucially to send information and documentation directly back to the NHS patient record itself. To see this achievement acknowledged with a HealthInvestor Award nomination provides welcome recognition of our team’s collective hard work, tenacity and determination to drive the industry forward via improved technology.’ Speaking about the full spectrum of Meddbase's project work with the NHS Meddbase Managing Director and Co-founder Will Temple comments: 'We believe that facilitating digital healthcare transformation is vital if we want to see advancements in technology translate from private healthcare to public healthcare.  As a healthcare technology provider we are committed to designing and building integrations to enable the joining up of healthcare data. Being named as a finalist for HealthInvestor's Technology Provider of the Year is an honour shared by the entire Meddbase team, as well as those working alongside us at the NHS.' The award winners will be announced at an event at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on 13th September 2021. For more details about the awards and finalists visit the HealthInvestor Awards website.

About Meddbase and Medical Management Systems

Medical Management Systems Ltd is a British software house which began work on Meddbase, its pioneering cloud-based patient record management system, in 2004. The company is fuelled by the simple vision of revolutionising healthcare technology using a SaaS delivery model, and over the last 16 years has created an industry-changing product. Meddbase, consists of 15 million lines of code, holds 900 million patient appointments and has sent over 20 million appointment reminder texts. Meddbase is the first new entrant to the NHS GPIT Futures Framework in over 12 years, and the only online supplier on the catalogue

Meddbase and the NHS: Supplier Update Q1 2021
April 15, 2021

Meddbase and the NHS: Our NHS Programme Updates  As you may be aware, here at Meddbase we have been working with NHS Digital for a number of years on a variety of projects to integrate some of Meddbase's functionality with NHS public health records. These projects include the development of a fully compliant solution offering independent GPs the ability to view their patients' NHS records, facilitating a more joined up approach to patient care. We've also been working on a follow-up phase to this work which will allow independent GPs to send information and documentation to the NHS patient record, as well as advancing our Meddbase Lite offering, and continuing to test NHS adaptors, to facilitate interoperability. Here we will update you on the progress of each of these projects, and summarise their aims and benefits as well as their timelines. GP Connect Update The development of the Meddbase GP Connect service, connecting private GPs with NHS primary care providers, is set against the backdrop of the CQC report on Private Hospitals that highlights the need for independent GPs to be able to access their patient's NHS records. This is key to improving clinical safety  - especially in relation to prescribing and allergies. We are happy to announce that this project is on track and we will be ready to pilot phase 1 in Spring/Summer 2021.  Phase 1 functionality allows a private GP to view their patient's NHS record within Meddbase, once consent from the patient themselves has been gained. We are also working behind the scenes to build on this work with a Phase 2, which we call the ‘Send Document’ phase. This will allow the GP to send any documentation, in PDF form, to the patient's NHS GP. This information can then be stored within the patient's NHS record and accessed when needed by their NHS primary care practice. blank Meddbase Lite Update We are also finalising the compliance process with NHS Digital on our Meddbase Lite product, which should be available on the NHS Buying Catalogue in July 2021. This will make Meddbase the first new entrant onto the catalogue in over 12 years, and the only cloud-native supplier. Meddbase Lite offers NHS organisations access to any patient's medical record on the Spine, offering the flexibility to provide care to patients who are not registered with your practice or who have not previously received care from your organisation.  Access will be via soft token smartcards. NHS-compliant access to the 'SPINE' means you can review the patient's medical record, and notes can be taken during the consultation and saved directly into the patient record. Safeguards are in place, as all activity is fully audited. This enterprise appointment solution also offers a sophisticated telemedicine component which has been piloted successfully with our private sector client base. We are continuing to work through the NHS's rigorous capability compliance process and have so far gone through compliance for two of the capabilities, those centred around resource management and referral management, and have passed. As we look forward to the rest of 2021 we will continue to work alongside the NHS to fulfil the various capabilities.
National Adaptor Integration Test Partner Programme Update
As part of Meddbase's ongoing NHS Programme we are continuing to work as one of the National Adaptor Integration Test Partners. This is a research and development programme which is aimed at addressing the issue of legacy technology and APIs used by the Spine, and the challenges faced by new market entrants who are looking to integrate with the Spine and offer services to the NHS. Meddbase is one of only two national test partners who are laying the groundwork by testing these adaptors, thereby unlocking the potential for new market entrants to access the NHS APIs and help diversify the market and facilitate digital healthcare transformation. This work is on track and due to end in April 2021. For more information on the work Meddbase is doing alongside the NHS visit the NHS page of the Meddbase website, read our news section and Meddbase blog, or book a demo.  

Meddbase on Netsuite.com: 5 Questions for Tech B2Bs Considering the Subscription Model
February 16, 2021

Meddbase's Managing Director Will Temple talks to Oracle Netsuite about the increased demand for and benefits of subscription-based software, and takes a look at what makes a product subscription-worthy. Read the full article on the Netsuite website.

Will Temple, Managing Director, Meddbase, talks about the Logistics of the Subscription Model

'Meddbase started in 2004 and found its subscription niche relatively simply. The opportunity was the custodial ownership of data for healthcare. In the UK, that’s a huge inherent risk — and health organizations consequently do not want to own the processing nor storage of data. Meddbase processes, manages and stores this health data and deals with retention, deletion backup and other tasks specific to data in the industry. “Health organizations want [external] companies to deal with [the processing part of the data], so we got into that quite early on,” said Temple. “... We take it off of the organization and do it for them, so it’s a very obvious service we’re providing. There’s no way you would look at it and think that you would buy it once, because it’s a continual service.” When asked to name just one best practice for companies beginning a subscription offering, Temple answered concisely: Invest in the customer and their loyalty throughout the lifecycle.' blank    

Managing Director’s New Year Message 2021
January 8, 2021

Managing Director's New Year Message 2021

It has been 10 months since I wrote an open letter to you, as we all entered the unchartered territory of lockdowns for the first time and as leaders of large and small businesses up and down this country and around the world addressed their clients' new concerns.

I could not have imagined that I would be writing a similar statement at the start of 2021, to reassure you of our continued commitment to support your businesses and patients in these difficult times.

As a cloud technology company specialising in clinical solutions to serve healthcare organisations across the globe, in private, corporate and NHS medicine, the Meddbase team have been focused on assisting our clients and their patients in a number of ways since March 2020.

We have scaled up our telemedicine solution and increased our staffing levels to support change and additional demand. We have also integrated a unique Covid AG screening programme into Meddbase as a direct response to the pandemic.

These programmes and initiatives, we are proud to say, have made a real difference to the organisations and individuals with whom we work.

Given the continuing demands across the sector, especially for remote working solutions, we are confident that we are well placed to continue with all our workstreams uninterrupted in 2021 irrespective of lockdown status, and can offer 'business as usual' even in such unusual times.

My message for January 2021 is simply a renewed commitment, on behalf of every member of the Meddbase team, to always offer you practical, tangible and actionable solutions and advice, backed up by our specialist knowledge, and to be your trusted partner in overcoming the latest challenges.

Best wishes for a happy, and above all a healthy, New Year.

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Will Temple
Managing Director
Medical Management Systems Ltd

Learn more about Meddbase

Meddbase Portfolio Delivery Manager Joins Faculty of Clinical Informatics 
December 10, 2020

Meddbase Portfolio Delivery Manager Rob Nobrega joins the Faculty of Clinical Informatics 

Ahead of the Faculty of Clinical Informatics' AGM on December 15th 2020, Meddbase announces its Portfolio Delivery Manager Rob Nobrega has been accepted as a member of the well-respected professional body for informaticians in health and social care.

The faculty shares the Meddbase vision to support safe, effective and efficient health and social care through excellence and innovation in clinical informatics, as well as advocating for the inclusion of clinical informatics in core clinical training. As the industry tackles the challenges of recovering from the pandemic, improved design, development and delivery of health and care information systems will become even more vital.

Rob Nobrega comments: “I am delighted to be accepted as a member of the Faculty of Clinical Informatics, especially at a time when informatics has been called upon to play a pivotal role in overcoming the biggest health challenge of our lifetime. I am certain the faculty will continue to make a positive impact and I welcome the opportunity to be involved with the work of the FCI encouraging further advances in the health informatics sphere.

Rob adds: "I look forward to attending the Annual General Meeting on December 15th 2020 and very much hope the insights gained here at Meddbase, alongside my pharmacy background, will allow me to contribute to the work of the faculty going forward.”

About Meddbase and Medical Management Systems

Medical Management Systems Ltd is a British software house which began work on Meddbase, its pioneering cloud-native patient record management system, in 2004. The company is fuelled by the simple vision of revolutionising healthcare technology using a SaaS delivery model, and over the last 16 years has created an industry-changing product. Meddbase consists of 15 million lines of code, holds over 900 million patient appointments and has sent over 20 million appointment reminder texts. Meddbase is the first new entrant to the NHS GPIT Futures Framework in over 12 years, and the only online supplier on the catalogue.  

Meddbase in Management Today: Is Business Trip Culture Gone For Good?
December 8, 2020

Meddbase's CEO Hossein Noshirvani speaks to Management Today, along with cross-industry business leaders, to reflect on the changes to business travel brought about by the pandemic. Read the full article on the Management Today website.

HOSSEIN NOSHIRVANI, CEO, MEDDBASE

'While don’t miss every flight - and I’m happy to avoid the jet lag - I do miss the return flights home from business trips, because they provide the perfect thinking time and environment to reflect on and digest the developments resulting from the trip itself. 

Those flights offer a completely unique time out from day-to-day life; when else do you have hours on end to work on pitches, strategize or just edit your meeting notes in complete silence, with no phone calls or interruptions?

Plus, it’s clear to clients just how much we value their business when a meeting warrants taking a transatlantic flight - and now that those journeys are so rare, I'm finding I relish them all the more. So no, I won't be tearing up that frequent flyer card just yet.'

Meddbase in Management Today

Meddbase on Jump.Work: 7 Interview Questions To Ask Employers During Covid-19
November 25, 2020

Meddbase Head of HR Sarah Cape has been quoted by Jump.work about the way candidate questions have changed during COVID-19.

“What impact has Covid-19 had on the Company?”

When entering a new role, it’s important you understand the condition that the company is currently in.

Especially if you end up being successful in more than one position – if you’ve got the choice between a company that’s struggling and one that’s booming as a result of Coronavirus, this will likely be a massive factor in your decision making process.

Of course, this is a great question to ask (it made it onto the list right?) However, you can make it even greater.

If you’re really looking to stand out, think of this question as the baseline, and mould it to relate specifically to the job you’re applying for.

“A lot of candidates have asked: ‘how has your business fared during Covid-19?’ The question was interesting initially, but it started to feel very generic after a while.

My advice would be to hone in on the sector and consider the challenges and opportunities which might have arisen in that particular environment.”

Sarah Cape HR Director, Meddbase

  meddbase quote on Jump.Work

Meddbase in Think Digital Partners: Women In Digital – Christine Hart
October 12, 2020

Meddbase's CDO Christine Hart is profiled by Think Digital Partners as part of a series focusing on the career progression of leading women in technology.  

WOMEN IN DIGITAL: CHRISTINE HART

We speak with chief delivery officer at medical practice management software firm Meddbase, Christine Hart, about her life in the military, being the only woman in her work environment for many years, and why she moved into healthcare.

Did you enjoy school? I grew up in a big family of five kids – our house was a pretty loud place – and my dad is a mad scientist type so we all grew up focused on learning and feeding curiosity at home as well as school. It wasn’t uncommon for science experiments and dinner to be cooking in the kitchen at the same time. This gave me the ability to connect academic learning with everyday life and I still do this now with my own son: we often add a science lesson to baking, gardening or taking care of the dog. What qualifications do you have? I don’t find my experience and qualifications are traditional, but I’ve definitely taken the steps to grow and develop to where I am now. I spent 15 years actively deploying technical solutions to hazardous environments, beginning my training in the US Navy followed by time in the Defence Intelligence Agency, growing my experience leading teams and driving larger projects. As a result, I spent many years overseas in very non-traditional environments and working with diverse groups of people. Has your career path been a smooth transition, a rocky road or combination of both? I think my version of smooth or rocky is often different than others’, but it’s definitely been a combination of both. I’ve had a very unorthodox career path for most in my life. Working for the US government I provided technical support that grew into more robust technical projects like building data and operational centres, so I’ve always been focused on delivering IT solutions and leading teams. The work placed me in some very dynamic environments, but also gave me a global view of politics, and a better understanding of world issues and the impact on humans from these strategic decisions. The advantage for my roles in healthcare has been the ability to keep in mind how decisions can impact clinicians and patients. I’ve never been one to back down from a challenge or hard work, I always look at my career and am thankful for the opportunities that have been provided. Of course, there are periods of time that were so exhausting that I look back on them and immediately want to take a nap, but I also know that those are the times where I overcame the most. I spent over half of my career the only female engineer, or the only female full stop, and often delivering to very male dominated groups. There were definitely hard days, but I found that if you are willing to fulfil your role, work hard and be part of the solution, not the problem, then respect will be earned, and respect is key. I never expected to fall into healthcare, but after working for the military, the connection to humanity is similar and the missions are very alike. I need that connection with helping the greater good with a direct, positive impact on people, especially the most vulnerable – our patients. That is who I believe those in the healthcare industry truly serve. I think that we all have hurdles and as a woman, we often have different challenges that don’t translate onto our CVs, but I also know that I wouldn’t be the leader and mother and person that I am without them. If it took a few rocky roads to get me to who I am today, then I’m good with that and embrace it, scars and all. What’s the best career advice you can give to others? I have a few things… Your dedication is a direct reflection of how much you care. It’s much easier to be dedicated and work hard for things that your integrity can get behind. You might not always love your job, but loving what and who you are serving will get you through the rough times. ‘Can’t’ is an excuse to not try harder. Ask yourself how bad you want it, if hard work discourages you, then you don’t want it bad enough. I stopped choosing jobs for money a long time ago, but instead I choose jobs that excite me and the money follows. If you had to pick one mentor who has had the biggest influence on you, who would it be? I don’t know if have had one mentor that stands out, but I’ve been really blessed that people have cared and respected me enough to give me advice. I feel that if they care enough to share their honest thoughts with me, then I need to listen. Advice doesn’t always come from people that you admire or consider to be someone to aspire to, sometimes it comes from subordinates, strangers and even your kids. I think to truly learn from others, you have to be willing to be humble and open minded. perspective. From where do you draw inspiration? I was taught a hard lesson to not overlook life’s little gifts; smell the flowers, enjoy those messy moments with your family, the friendliness of a stranger or time with a pet. By embracing humanity and nature, I’m better able to look past the complexities in our world and focus on the fundamental shared needs of all of us. This gives me focus I need and reminds me not to get distracted by things that aren’t truly valuable. What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced to date? I spent 15 years in war zones, so every day that I get to go home, cook dinner and hang out with my son is, to me, the definition of a good day. I’ve had a lot of really bad days, so I try to keep my bad days in perspective and not let them effect my attitude or how I treat people. What qualities do you feel makes a good leader? Being honest and transparent with your teams, being someone with integrity that they can trust. Embrace your humanity, teach that failure is real and we use it to improve. Set high expectations, tell people that you have faith in them to meet those expectations and teach them how to do so. Don’t be a good leader on only good days. A good leader is a good follower, don’t let your role step on others’ voices or their authority to make decisions. My last thought is to laugh with your teams; you don’t have to be a comedian, but a bit of levity allows them to know that you’re approachable and not always in ‘boss’ mode. From a work viewpoint what has 2020 been like for you so far? Exhausting! Healthcare has made a dynamic shift in focus and delivery within a very short time. Throughout that time of transformation there hasn’t been a way to segregate our family lives from our work lives. As a single mom with a child at home all day, managing online schooling and intensely working through such a stressful time has been exhausting, but I also know that the outcome and improvement in clinical and patient care will change how the world views IT healthcare. Give us a fact about you that most other people wouldn’t know I don’t find that these are things that really come up in conversation but… I’ve been to Formula One and Nascar racing school, and I also went to hand to hand combat and defensive driving school for one of my jobs. I was the engineer manning the systems for the first ever Iraqi and US Cabinet meetings that George Bush attended in his surprise visit to Baghdad in 2005. I once bribed a tour bus driver to drive me (and my team) from Athens, Greece to Skopje, Macedonia, the day after the US announced it was at war with Kosovo. His key concern was that he didn’t have Macedonian currency for the tolls… but I did. I was one of the technical advisors to the current US Embassy in Baghdad while it was being built. I provided technical support to nine different locations in Afghanistan for a year; six of the sites had zero females allowed on compound and I didn’t work with another female for 11 years of my career. I bred, raised, and trained Border Collie dogs as a teenager for money. My first time on an airplane was to go to US Navy bootcamp in Great Lakes, Illinois at 18 years old. blank  

Caring About Case Management
October 8, 2020

The Meddbase team are releasing a set of changes in the latest system update on October 12th 2020. This includes some big improvements to the way we deal with case management  - along with other referrals from managers in the Referral Portal into Meddbase. The key change for Meddbase users is that every Referral from now on will belong to a case, and that case’s name will be made visible to everyone that needs to interact with it  - from managers and administrators to clinicians. Of course we have published technical documentation for customers which covers in detail how the new feature will work and how it can be configured and used in Meddbase, but here I'd like to talk about why we’re going down this route, and where we think these improvements to case management will take us all in the future.

Why I Care About Case Management

For a long time, we’ve known that our case management workflow, while powerful, was slightly divorced from the working reality of clinical and administrative staff in a couple of ways. Most importantly, although we technically assigned each appointment conducted to a case, there wasn’t really any way for the referring manager to view that, and it didn’t really impact the workflow at all.  This meant that follow up referrals were almost completely unconnected from the referral that they were following up, and it was more difficult than it should have been for a manager, or even a Meddbase user, to see the entire lifetime of a case. Back when I was a Meddbase customer I must confess this irked me, so now I'm on the other side of the fence and am a product architect I’m very happy to have the opportunity to help change this feature based on my own previous real world experience as a user.

How Occupational Health Can be Helped

The fundamental challenge I see with Occupational Health in general, and particularly with Occupational Health software, is making it easy for managers and employees to engage with the service, and these changes to Meddbase are just one part of the overall plan we have to facilitate that engagement. While it’s all well and good to explain the myriad benefits of Occupational Health, if the processes and software used aren’t easily grokkable  - that is if they're not intuitive for the user without extra explanation - then people just won’t use them and those benefits simply evaporate. To that end, we wanted to make sure that the processes we asked people to follow when using the software matched the real-world processes as closely as possible What we hope this will mean for our customers is higher levels of engagement from their clients' staff, with less effort required to drive that engagement. And we want to build on that mantra going forward:

"software should be supporting the processes and people involved in Healthcare, not putting barriers in their path or dictating artificially complex workflows for no benefit."

This also marks the start of a renewed commitment to Occupational Health as a sector on our part here at Meddbase - and with Meddbase being such a process-driven application, Occupational Health has always been a good fit for our product. Looking forward I can see a lot of areas where we can do even more to help improve the health and wellbeing of the workforce as well as providing time and effort-saving solutions to administration and clinical teams.
If you'd like to read more from Sam, check out this blog post about Meddbase implementing user feedback in the form of UserVoice.

Meddbase Named As A Finalist in the HTN Awards 2020
September 30, 2020

London, U.K., September 30th 2020 - Leading online practice management system Meddbase has been shortlisted for an HTN Award.    

The SaaS software product has been named a finalist in the 2020 Health Tech Newspaper Awards in the category of Most Promising Pilot, with a telemedicine project carried out for client HCA Healthcare UK.

The virtual consultations pilot phase saw Meddbase provide the capability for HCA doctors to continue to work remotely in the early months of the pandemic.

“We couldn't be more proud of our team for the hard work and focus that was put into delivering this crucial project under extremely challenging circumstances and to exceptionally tight deadlines,” said Managing Director and Meddbase co-founder Will Temple.

"Being named as a finalist gives much deserved recognition to the dedication of our team, as well as to those working alongside us at HCA Healthcare."

The award winners will be announced in a virtual awards evening on October 22nd 2020. For more details about the awards and finalists visit the HTN Awards category page.

About Meddbase and Medical Management Systems

Medical Management Systems Ltd is a British software house which began work on Meddbase, its pioneering cloud-based patient record management system, in 2004. The company is fuelled by the simple vision of revolutionising healthcare technology using a SaaS delivery model, and over the last 16 years has created an industry-changing product. Meddbase, consists of 15 million lines of code, holds 900 million patient appointments and has sent over 20 million appointment reminder texts. Meddbase is the first new entrant to the NHS GPIT Futures Framework in over 12 years, and the only online supplier on the catalogue.  

3 Things To Think About Before Changing Healthcare Software Provider
September 28, 2020

So you’ve decided to update or upgrade your EHR software, or to finally move away from pen and paper and digitise your patient records.

Perhaps your goal is to streamline your back office functions and administration processes – especially given the additional complications created by the sudden rise in remote working brought about by the pandemic. Your main focus may be on improving patient care in ways that are specific to your practice. Both are equally valid reasons for considering a software move, and both are goals we are equally committed to here at Meddbase. Changing software in any industry can be somewhat disruptive to your staff, and to your organisation as a whole, and in a healthcare context it’s vital that the process is expertly managed to avoid common pitfalls. As a software house we of course want to promote the benefits of moving to our software, but we always advise that it’s done for the right reasons and in a carefully considered manner. This is about long term success: it’s a marathon not a sprint. That being said the first thing I want to give you, which may seem odd coming from the CEO of a software company, is a key reason NOT to switch software; and that reason is frustration. At some point every client will have some frustrations with their current service providers. Short-term frustration alone is no reason to switch: no software solution is a magic bullet, and few products will ever do everything you want, the exact way that you want it, right out of the box. But if you believe your frustration marks more than just a speed bump in an otherwise smooth road, or if you’re experiencing a consistent lack of functionality with your current provider - or if you have simply outgrown your current solution - then you know it really is time to prepare for transition. The 3 Points To Consider Before Changing Your Healthcare Software

1. Prepare your PEOPLE

The most successful Meddbase implementations are championed by the people involved. When you’ve got commitment from your staff and leadership to see the project through to completion, when you know it’s not necessarily easy to implement new software, but you’re aware that the short term pain will produce long term gain, when you can identify team members who will be internal leaders, and when there’s a person or a team within your organisation who can gather the necessary data, and be catalysts for change - then you know you are ready as an organisation to upgrade your software.

2. Take your TIME

Figure out when the best time to change software would be for YOUR business. For example if your business is cyclical, consider timing the go live date to tie in with the natural slowdown. Changing software is a process that’s best planned ahead of time to minimise disruption. As part of the planning stage, and right at the start before you even set a timescale, check if you are under contract with your current provider, and make sure you give yourself enough time to switch. Depending on the complexities of the conversion to Meddbase and the amount of consultancy you need, the process may take anything from weeks to months, so knowing your previous contract end date will help dovetail the transition.

3. Clean your DATA

Changing software is also a good opportunity to clean up your database, remove duplicate files and examine and streamline your workflows; don’t waste that unique opportunity to redesign the way your business operates. And finally here’s a simple exercise to leave you with:

Define Your Current and Future Software Needs

Make a list of what you like and don’t like about your current provider, along with a list of what you believe you’ll need most from your practice management software in future. This part is key because changing software is about future-proofing your organisation so that your capacity to serve patients and build your business is propelled rather than curtailed by your software choice. If this all sounds daunting, feel free to contact us anytime - our team can sit down with you to help. We understand that you may already have a detailed road map for your business, and we are happy to help you navigate.    

Meddbase in HTN Health Tech Newspaper: Health tech experts reflect and share learnings
September 23, 2020

Meddbase's Managing Director Will Temple speaks to HTN along with health and tech experts from across the industry to reflect on key learnings this year. Read the full article on the HTN website.

Will Temple, Managing Director, Meddbase

The last few months have taught us to balance ideals with reality, and we learned just what our teams can accomplish when faced with a historic challenge. At Meddbase we’ve been working on complex and highly nuanced healthcare development projects for over 15 years but Covid has highlighted the truth in the old adage ‘perfect is the enemy of good’. Tasked with scaling up our telemedicine solution virtually overnight we had to stop asking ourselves ‘what’s the perfect way to do this?’ and instead ask ‘what’s the fastest way to do this – without losing our passion for quality?’ Not being able to wait for the right moment or the ideal way to deliver a project forced us to focus on one goal: simple, secure, swift delivery of the service being asked of us.   blank

Meddbase in ValueWalk: 3 Popular Questions During A Virtual Interview
September 9, 2020

Meddbase Head of HR Sarah Cape has spoken to ValueWalk.com to share her views on preparing for virtual interviews during COVID-19. Read the full article at ValueWalk.com

What are your biggest weaknesses?

Sarah Cape, Head of HR for Meddbase, shares her tips; “If you’re worried that you’re not qualified enough for a role or have some technical gaps, then steer your response towards your passion for self-improvement and professional development. Prove your commitment to learning by drawing on an example from a previous role where you bridged a knowledge gap.  We all have weaknesses but if you can convey a willingness to succeed, then you can create a positive impression from a fairly negative question. Meddbase in Value Walk

Patient Engagement And Online Medical Portals in 2020
August 27, 2020

Patient engagement in healthcare is a buzzword you probably heard lots about in the industry over the last few years and thought of as something you wanted to learn more about and invest in - one day, when you had the time and budget. With the Coronavirus Pandemic that day was thrust upon us all very suddenly, making the importance of online patient engagement a hot topic on everybody's lips, even those with no special stake in the healthcare industry at all. So what does the post-Covid emphasis on patients being involved in their own healthcare decisions mean for your business? And what can you do to improve your own practice's patient engagement and online offering? An engaged patient can make more informed decisions about their healthcare options and in turn expects care providers to engage them in the decision-making process. Many patients have been faced with a poor experience from the outset - an unexpected struggle to find the right healthcare provider compounded by finding the simple task of booking an appointment online to be a bigger hassle than they would have liked. And even once connected to a healthcare provider, after care is often doled out offline-only, meaning it's left up to the patient themselves. But the younger generation's expectations from service providers are completely digital, and recent lockdowns have forced even the most reticent of the population into taking care of every aspect of their life online, including their health. We all expect everything to be available online and for any service to be delivered in an instant with the tap of a finger, so booking a doctor’s appointment and accessing our medical records is something people are becoming more and comfortable with. There are many reasons to be named for the initial slow adaptation - worries about security risks, the lack of standardisation in the industry - but the expedited need for patient access created by Covid has led to a paradigm shift among healthcare providers who are now desperately trying to catch up with other industries. As more and more patients are offered access to online portals to book their appointments and access their medical records the mentality that patients can completely serve themselves needs to change; it’s important that the online tools we offer come with clear guidance which outline the benefits for the patient themselves. Digital tools like patient portals offer real opportunity for healthcare providers to engage with their patients beyond the appointment booking process. Offering additional services could contribute to helping create a more engaged patient and better transparency when it comes to their healthcare. Examples of complementary services include intelligent notifications to take medication, clinic finders with smart filters, the option to fill out pre-appointment questionnaires online, seamless video consultations, online test results or prescriptions, as well as giving full access to a patient's own medical history. Meddbase has worked with some of the largest healthcare providers in the world to develop just such a portal, and in collaboration with these providers our aim has been to create an optimal experience for patients and clinicians alike, throughout the entire medical journey.

Meddbase in Metro Newspaper: Bringing Staff Back Into The Office
June 23, 2020

Meddbase has spoken to Metro Newspaper giving an experts' view on the issue of bringing staff back into the office post-covid versus continuing with remote working. Read the full article at Metro.News

Progress: Bring staff back into the office or continue with remote working? The experts’ view

In the short term, some firms will have staff who cannot come back to an office space because they are vulnerable, shielding or caring for children, while others will be anxious about returning and would prefer to be at home.

Meddbase, a technology company that provides remote working software to doctors, is one company that says it wanted its own staff members to make up their minds about returning. ‘We’ve giving all our staff the choice of working from home until further notice, it’s entirely up to them. If their kids aren’t in school, we don’t expect our employees to come to the office, it’s that simple,’ says Christine Hart, Chief Service Delivery Officer. blank  

Meddbase in Forbes: Health-Tech’s Big Data Prognosis 
May 22, 2020

Meddbase has spoken to Forbes.com about the timely topic of wrangling Big Data within a healthcare context. Read the full article on Forbes.com

Health-Tech’s Big Data Prognosis

Data architect at Meddbase (Medical Management Systems Ltd) Matthew Braunschweig notes that conservative estimates place current global healthcare data at around 25,000 petabytes, with a compound annual growth rate of 36 percent through 2025.

“This makes the significant interest in big data for healthcare increasingly problematic. Unless everything is held in a single system, you’re left wrangling a wild herd of data which includes, but is not limited to, data construction, standardization, interoperability, ingestion and proper handling, across thousands of use cases and providers,” said Braunschweig. He contends that data of this size gives an entirely new meaning to the term big data (a term we typically use to express data that doesn’t fit into standard databases with any kind of ease). Further, Braunschweig reminds us that pharmaceutical data adds an extra layer of difficulty because it rarely ‘stands alone’ i.e. it’s essential to know and trust the precise details of a patient's new prescription, but what about their comorbidities, diet, economic status, or that recent visit to the ER? If we further track in and attempt to ingest data on patient location demographics (e.g. neighborhood grocery v. fast food, or concentration of liquor stores) then data ingestion fast becomes data indigestion. “So we can see that ingesting Health-Tech big data needs to accommodate for the fact that it is more than a single drop of quality data; there’s always a pool of data for describing a patient. Even if the big data is sourced in a perfect storm of creating, sharing and processing, the information available may not represent the whole truth. And if your database’s big data is not the whole picture, then what exactly do you have? The good news is that however jagged, giant and bitter the pill of health-tech big data may actually be, when administered properly it does have the power to change patients’ lives,” said Braunschweig. Meddbase in Forbes full quote

A word from our Managing Director
March 23, 2020

I hope you are keeping well during this unprecedented time. I would like to update you on the steps that we have taken to ensure the continuation of an uninterrupted service to our clients during this time as well as ensuring the safety of our staff.

Following government guidance, all of our staff are setup to work from home and will continue to support our customers. As a cloud-based software company with an existing home working policy in place for all staff, we are exceptionally well placed to continue with the same level of high service our clients have come to expect. We have moved all in-person meetings and training to take place via Teams and WebEx until further notice. Our Support and Service Delivery teams remain available and fully contactable in the usual way.

During this time, we are working closely with NHS Digital to provide a number of new integrations and remote working solutions. We plan on releasing these over the coming weeks and expect them to benefit all clients in the private and NHS sector. These updates and features are aimed specifically at helping administration and clinical staff work more efficiently when working from home and when using a personal device.

We understand this is an extremely demanding time for many of our customers and supporting you is our top priority so please do not hesitate to get in touch with us if there is anything we can do to help.

Best Wishes

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Will Temple
Managing Director
Medical Management Systems Ltd

Learn more about Meddbase

Why video appointments aren’t a silver bullet for increasing capacity in your practice
December 2, 2019

Video appointments, also known as telemedicine, are being touted by some as a silver bullet for solving capacity issues in the health system. Increasing capacity is critical to ensuring the ongoing viability of the system as greater demands are placed on stagnating numbers of GPs

Adoption for this method of appointment is growing quickly, signalling its importance and popularity with both patients and clinicians. The number of appointments delivered by video has increased by 400% in the past five years and will no doubt keep on growing. 

It’s easy to see why video appointments have become a popular option, especially for patients. Speaking to a clinician face-to-face via an app or web browser is far more convenient than travelling to an inconvenient location (the surgery) at an inconvenient time (whatever slot is available). Rather than being at the beck and call of random appointment schedules, patients can take more control of their health. Instead of having to fit appointments around varying employment schedules and/or childcare, patients can access healthcare professionals far more easily. Plus, clinicians get an increased amount of flexibility – less commuting, while still delivering high quality care to their patients. 

What’s more, by moving patient appointments to other service channels, there are numerous ancillary benefits, such as:  

  • The spread of infections is reduced 
  • Physical infrastructure and resources are reserved for those needing it most 
  • Reduction in the number of patients that would have reverted to urgent care centres. The cost of one or two patients visiting A&E currently amounts to a whole year of GP care, meaning video appointments help stop significant value leaking out of the system. 

It’s clear that video consultations are clearly a fantastic innovation...but what if we were to look at another angle? 

A small shift in perspective leads to a whole different story. 

The truth is, an unnecessary GP appointment is unnecessary whether it's delivered in person or via video. 

And depending on which practice you speak to, somewhere between 25% and 50% of GP appointments should have been dealt with through other means. Like visiting a practice nurse or going to a pharmacy. 

In reality, video consultation are only part of the equation to unlocking the value of digital technology. The real opportunity lies in using technology to increase capacity in your practice by directing people towards different care channels, when appropriate, before the appointment is booked. 

But how does that happen? And is it really that much more effective? 

Well, yes. Because there are other variables you can include to deliver a higher level of efficiency. In addition to video, patient portals are an effective way for surgeries to evolve how they deliver care in the future. By giving patients secure access to their medical record and prescriptions, patients can feel more in control of their care. Coupled with personalised content based on their known health profile, patients become more active in care and can make smarter decisions armed with the right information. 

Companies in sectors like Financial Services are seeing in excess of 50% of their customers choosing digital-only options to manage their accounts. Although healthcare has its own unique needs, physical interaction remains a critical component of care, but we recognise that needs are changing. Just like in other sectors, we fully expect this trend towards digital self-service to impact the healthcare industry just as much as it has others. 

Having a smart triage system on your website is another way to reduce requests for appointments – sometimes by up to 40%. By asking a clearly defined set of questions and directing patients towards the most appropriate place based on their responses, resources can be diverted efficiently. To begin with, think about the common reasons a patient books an unnecessary appointment. Then consider how resources could be used more efficiently to address these issues before patients book an appointment. This is not about cutting costs and reducing the standard of care but examining how digital tools can help improve the standard of care, without driving up budgets. 

Another thing to note is the demographics you are trying to serve and how best to fit care into their needs. Which patients are more likely to adopt newer tech and which ones show more reticence? And if there are low adoption rates, it means the benefits of these new care options are not being communicated clearly or regularly enough for it to be a compelling option. 

Ultimately, it is important to recognise that telemedicine is only one part of the puzzle. Offering a wide range of tools that address patient needs before the actual appointment is booked can help alleviate resources while ensuring patients get a high standard of care. Patient portals and digital triage tools are key assets in ensuring that patients are engaged, active, and in control of their health. This ensures that patients across demographics are given accessible and personalised information while balancing practice resources and budgets. 

Medical Management Systems receives investment
March 21, 2019

Miami, Florida and London, U.K., March 20, 2019—Today, Compiler VC (CVC), an investment fund based in Miami, Florida, announced it has invested $4M in London, UK based, Medical Management Systems (MMS) an international leading provider of electronic health records (EHR), patient scheduling and revenue cycle management (RCM).

MMS and CVC have a shared vision to create health IT solutions that support clinicians and improve patient experience and outcomes. CVC’s investment will ensure continued growth and development of new products and services and the hiring of top talent.

“As the fastest growing EMR provider in the UK, we were approached by several investors”, said Managing Director and co-founder Will Temple. “In CVC, we found both an investor and a partner who invested money and time. As we expand into the public sector in the UK and move on to the NHS IT Future Framework while simultaneously growing our US presence, having an accretive investor was a priority.”

“We are trying to make London a hub of healthcare innovation and Meddbase is currently leading the way in delivering SaaS EHR to some of the largest private providers and insurers in the world,” says Adam Wolman, managing partner of CVC. “CVC invests in innovative companies that are at the top of their field, helping them to achieve their potential. MMS is a natural fit for us, and we are thrilled to support them as they continue to advance and develop world-class EHR that impact patients throughout the world by helping physicians to offer the highest level of care.”

CVC is known as “the entrepreneurs behind the entrepreneur,” and has had a successful track record of investing and building organizations. Its founders, Adam Wolman and Hossein Noshirvani, have helped private companies attain their growth objectives by tapping into a set of resources, knowledge base and network of relationships designed to help companies scale. 

“The synergies between MMS and CVC will allow us to continue investing in our people, our product and our sales to solve important healthcare challenges,” said Paul Louth, CTO and co-founder of MMS. “Our focus for the past 14 years has been on developing new, innovative ways to support the needs of our customers. Partnering with CVC will allow us to continue focusing on both current and new customers and developing more effective and efficient solutions to meet their needs.”     

Founded in 2004, MMS employs approximately 40 individuals in London and Washington D.C. .