Over the last year, hospitals across the country have been operating on low resources, whether PPE, staff, capacity, or vaccines. Healthcare leaders implemented strategies and tools to ease this strain, producing key learnings that apply to care delivery outside of the pandemic. Digital health tools such as conversational virtual assistants played a vital role in understanding patient needs and automating countless hours of valuable staff time spent on care navigation.
GYANT Chief Integration Officer, Paige Heaphy, and Tracy Donegan, Chief Information and Innovation Officer at Martin Luther King Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH), discuss how Mia, MLKCH’s virtual assistant, leverages their existing investments to reach more patients in less time and improve and staff efficiency.
What you’ll learn in this webinar:
- Using a digital front door to adapt to immediate patient needs
- Acting on engagement data to inform resource allocation
- Understanding the role of the digital front door moving forward
Martin Luther King Community Healthcare (MLKCH), a non-profit healthcare organization that serves over 1.3 million patients per year, is one of the few healthcare resources located in downtown Los Angeles. With 131 beds and built to manage 45,000 encounters per year effectively, MLKCH’s actual numbers reach above 110,000 encounters per year. And that effectively equates to a shortage of 1,200 physicians.
When the time pandemic hit, MLKCH had the highest percentage of hospitalized COVID patients within a 15-mile radius. With 120% of hospital beds occupied by COVID patients, MLKCH was the “epicenter of the epicenter of the pandemic,” and was forced to treat patients in gift shops and hallways.
Capacity was such a big issue and managing resources, specifically space and people, was crucial and MLKCH needed a solution to accommodate COVID or suspected COVID patients.
Understanding that technology could help mind the gaps in these current operational challenges, MLKCH worked in partnership with GYANT to launch their virtual assistant, Mia.
Acting as the digital front door for patients, Mia immediately addressed resource challenges by reducing the burden on MLKCH’s call center and switchboard. Able to answer patient questions quickly and accurately from any mobile device, Mia provided accurate and up-to-date information about COVID to MLKCH patients and visitors throughout the pandemic. Mia also helped divert non-urgent patients away from the hospital and triage them to the appropriate venue of care.
Tracy Donegan, Chief Information and Innovation Officer at MLKCH, shared another vital challenge Mia was able to address – visitation. When the pandemic hit, severe restrictions prohibited family members from being able to visit patients. Because Mia was able to take the load off the call center, healthcare workers had more time to provide family members with patient updates.
Additionally, when comparing the data collected from Mia to city data, MLKCH was able to better predict where there might be a surge in COVID cases.
Moving forward, MLKCH looks to integrate telemedicine and asynchronous care with Mia to improve access to care and increase efficiency across all service lines. Patient follow-up, including patient surveys, will also aid in chronic disease management.
As MLKCH continues to expand its portfolio of technologies and tools, Mia will be there to help close operational gaps, learning and growing along the way.
Want to learn how a digital front door can improve patient engagement and loyalty for your health system?