Dentist Appointments Will Resume As Usual. Public Health Processes Will Not.
When the dentist calls to schedule my routine cleaning, I usually cringe. With so much to do in-between work and home responsibilities, lying back while someone uses high-pitched tools on my teeth isn’t exactly how I want to spend my free time.
This cleaning, however, was different. I had missed my last appointment because of COVID-19 shutdowns, and most of Florida was still closed. So when the hygienist called to say they were reopening, I actually felt relief! So much so that my wife, son and I all scheduled our appointments for the same time and went together. Who knew going to the dentist could be such an exciting family outing!
As most states begin to phase back in, you may also find yourself looking forward to the routine habits that, at one time, seemed like such a chore. Or, due to social distancing efforts and increased concern for public health, you may find yourself going about the same-old chores in a better, more efficient way.
We know this to be true for many government agencies who have leaned into remote operations the past few months and, now, notice that increased mobility means constituents and government staff are equally more productive and on-the-ball with their responsibilities.
For Public Health Departments, however, digital transformation was the only way to mitigate the pandemic and, ultimately, save lives – they were forced into a hasty adoption, which usually requires an adjustment period and a lot of “coming around to it.” So when Michigan’s Ottawa County Public Health Department (OCPHD) jumped in willingly with both feet, I was astounded. Within just the first few cases of Coronavirus in their state, the OCPHD stood up an OnBase-built Patient and Contact Tracking Application that not only automated much of their nurses’ manual work and provided epidemiologists (still learning how to fluidly pronounce this) with up-to-the-minute data, but this mold-breaking rapid response tool recycled more than 2,800 hours back into patient care. In other words, medical staff could focus more on the human element of caring for those who needed urgent attention and less time note-taking and weeding through scattered paper case files.
Recently, I was honored to see a demo of their application. One of the OCPHD nurses exclaimed, “we can use this for so much more than COVID-19!” And, let me tell you – she was right. As the curve continues to flatten and we start to resume some sense of normalcy, Public Health Departments applying this tool to their day-to-day operations are rising exponentially above their previous averages – increased visibility, expedited collaboration with colleagues and external agencies, faster data collection, stronger analytics and five-star patient care.
Graciously, the OCPHD put together a webinar further detailing the ins-and-out of this application. Yes, some things will never go back to their previous “normal.” But, in the case of digital transformation, we’ll soon come to see that change is propelling us into a more inter-connected, all-around stronger world.
Wishing you lots of fun and good health as we ease into a summer of family vacations, friendly barbeques, patio dinners and, yes, maybe even routine dentist appointments.
Forms – How a Good Idea Became a Disastrous Concept
I read a recent statement issued by Florida’s Department of Transportation (FDOT) saying that, in an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, it is leading the coordination of DOH and the Florida Highway Patrol to implement Executive Order 20-86. As a result, more than 8,000 traveler forms have been collected at the I-10 and I-95 checkpoints. The statement went on to say that FDOT is also coordinating with public use airports, DOH and law enforcement, and has already collected more than 15,600 traveler forms at public use airports across the state.
That, my friends, is a lot of forms, especially for one state agency to process!
The Public Health Agency’s Remedy for Ailing Point Solutions
As the world prepares for a “new normal,” public health agencies will be challenged to afford and implement processes that serve faster-paced, mobile day-to-day needs, as well as keep them prepared for future outbreaks. As we’ve learned to do with “all things government technology,” we turned to Former CIO, and now Government Consultant, Paul Gorman for insights. Tune in as we discuss how to marshal resources in preparation for the public health agency’s future technology needs, mobile testing and data gathering, how being equipped today mitigates tomorrow’s hurdles when responding to emergencies, and how to prepare for all prospective contingencies.
Your Exclusive Opportunity with the Mold-Breakers at Michigan’s Ottawa County Department of Public Health!
When the first few cases of novel Coronavirus started plaguing Michigan, Ottawa County’s Department of Public Health (OCDPH) knew it needed capabilities and reach far beyond what hand-written notes, inaccessible Excel spreadsheets and temperamental log-in systems could offer.
Through a multi-department collaboration, the OCDPH established a team that combined knowledge and experience from past implementations of OnBase solutions in seemingly unrelated programs. The team pulled on experience from the Environmental Health department and their Application Specialist Marshall Boyd, and were able to stand up a digitalized, end-to-end patient and contact tracking application within just a few weeks.
- More than 20,00 surveys were administered thanks to integrations with Michigan’s public health record database and ESRI
- With a 91 percent response rate, over 2,800 hours were saved from manual work and recycled back into patient care
- Real-time reporting dashboards increased visibility and patient monitoring
- A scalable system that adjusts to evolving needs and can now be used in day-to-day operations
And so much more! Really, this article explains it all.
But we don’t want to just tell you about this revolutionary application – we want you to see it for yourself and have all your questions answered. Check out the recording of our webinar, “One Patient and Tracking Application. Thousands of Hours Cycled Back into Public Health.”
What Can We Do For You?
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