Allen Technologies’ Site-Wide Notification Feature Simplifies and Speeds Hospital Communication
Allen Technologies, the leader in interactive patient engagement solutions, has launched an innovative new module that enables hospitals to push out instant messages site-wide through its interactive patient engagement system.
Through Allen’s new site-wide notification module, clients can quickly and easily provide real-time updates such as weather alerts, emergency notifications, patient and visitor information, or special event details – the applications are endless. Messages can be delivered across the entire hospital campus, or to specific units.
“With 24×7 operations, hospitals must be able to communicate quickly and efficiently. Having an ability to get messages immediately to patients, visitors and staff is important,” said Allen Technologies President and CEO Jerry Folsom. According to a report published in the Clinical Biochemistry journal, hospital staff members are interrupted up to 11 times an hour by pagers, telephones, intercom, and faceto-face encounters in a normal operating day. These frequent interruptions distract health care workers from effectively completing tasks or care, and could result in errors, the report noted. Another study, in 2014 by the Ponemon Institute, estimated that 65 percent of the time spent in admitting a patient was due to inefficient communications.
“This new tool gives hospitals a seamless, fast way to notify patients, and staff, of important information – be it something as simple as a change in the hospital restaurant’s hours, or information that patients need to read upon admission, to alerting patients and staff to severe weather,” said Folsom.
At El Camino Hospital, for example, the site-wide notification feature was instrumental in communicating flu visitation alerts during California’s challenging influenza season, during which four flu-related fatalities were reported in the San Francisco Bay Area in January alone. In order to protect patients and employees from exposure to the flu viruses, El Camino Hospital routinely implements restrictions on hospital visitors during the flu months. During the 2014-2015 flu season, the hospital used Allen’s sitewide notification to push out flu visitation policy updates quickly and efficiently.
“The Allen Technologies team was very quick to respond and implement a solution that was exactly what we wanted,” said Hijinio Reynoso, manager of digital media at El Camino Hospital. That solution was a message awaiting the patient on the in-room TV, explaining the seasonal visitor restrictions. Within 48 hours of learning of El Camino Hospital’s challenge, Allen’s digital messages were live on all 316 in-room televisions across the hospital.
“We used the interactive patient system messaging as part of our overall communications efforts,” said Reynoso. “It was one of many tools we use including tent cards, messages on our website home page, social media and signage – but it is the fastest, most targeted, and easiest to implement and manage.”
Similarly, when Mercy Hospital Joplin opened in Joplin, Missouri, earlier this month, it implemented the Allen site-wide notification module as part of its comprehensive emergency response planning. The 300- bed, state-of-the-art hospital replaces the former St. John’s Regional Medical Center that was ravaged in May 2011 by an EF5 tornado. Through the deployment of Allen Technologies’ alert system, Mercy Hospital Joplin now can quickly notify patients and staff across the entire facility of changing weather conditions and other important updates.
“The dynamic nature and around-the-clock activity of hospitals makes communication across all shifts, patient rooms and public areas a real challenge – particularly in emergency situations, where time is critical,” said Folsom. “The site-wide notification module brings yet another tool to hospitals as they look for ways to educate and engage patients, and enhance operational efficiencies.”
About Allen Technologies
Allen Technologies, the pioneer of interactive patient engagement solutions for nearly 40 years, transforms the way hospitals engage, educate and empower patients. Allen helps hospitals impact patient outcomes, improve patient satisfaction and achieve operational efficiencies. Allen’s multiplatform interactive patient engagement system, delivered via television, tablet and bedside monitor, is a robust patient-centric portal for customized patient education, in- room comfort control, and entertainment. Allen’s E3 Patient Engagement Solutions integrate seamlessly with electronic medical records and system platforms including HVAC, housekeeping and food service systems. Learn more at www.engagewithallen.com, at facebook.com/allentechnologies or on Twitter at @allen_E3.