Nurses are the foundation of the healthcare system. They tend to be the closest team members to your patient or injured worker, and ultimately, are your true frontline. Whether you’re a payer, provider, or third-party administrator, leveraging nurses who are armed with technology can help your organization reach key goals.
The nurses who engage with injured workers, claimants or patients have the power to empower, influence, and transform. Your nurses can improve the patient experience, influence clinical outcomes, reduce the cost of care, and help shape things like return-to-work times or the amount of physical therapy required after surgery. This is why leading third-party administrators, payers, Fortune 100 companies like Microsoft and Amazon, and even tech start-ups, are leveraging nurses to help shape the solutions they offer and how they’re offered to beneficiaries.
So, why are so many healthcare organizations across the spectrum leaning to nurses to better reach their patient population? One word: trust.
Your Secret Weapon For Healthcare Digital Technology: A Nurse’s Trust
For 18 years in a row, surveyed Americans have voted nurses as having the highest amount of honesty and ethics from a wide-range of professions. According to Gallup, 85% of Americans say nurses’ honesty and ethical standards are “very high” or “high”. Comparatively, engineers are ranked second with just 66% of American’s deeming them to have high honesty and ethics. At the low end, insurance salespeople only have 13% of the population deeming them “honest” and “ethical”.
In other words, nurses blow any profession out of the water when it comes to the public trusting them. For this reason, if you’re a third-party administrator, employer, or insurer offering a digital healthcare solution for patients, nurses have a lot of power and influence when it comes to enrollment, adoption, and empowerment.
For instance, if an injured worker is offered a helpful digital healthcare solution to aid in their recovery by an insurance salesperson, they may be skeptical and never take advantage of the proven technology. However, when the same digital platform is offered by a trusted nurse case manager, they’ll have a warmer introduction and better chance of engagment.
Successful patient-facing technology adoption starts with your frontline management team.
Why Nurses Are Your Secret Weapon (When Rolling Out Technology):
- Patients Trust Them…The Most. Above any reported profession, nurses are the most trusted and ranked the highest for honesty and ethics. If your executive team and frontline understand the benefits of a patient-facing healthcare technology, leveraging this trust to encourage user enrollment is powerful.
- Bridge the Gap. First and foremost, nurses are trained to have a deep clinical understanding and work with patients. Your nursing team knows how patients operate, how outcomes can be improved, and what is required to make the ‘needle move’. Nurses can be thought of as the ‘middleman’ working for both the patient, decision-makers, and stakeholders.
- Drive Behaviour Changes. Through trust, medical knowledge, and communication, nurses are perfectly situated to encourage and empower real change with patients. If real change involves getting patients to take advantage of your chosen healthcare technology, nurses are trained to influence and guide patients toward necessary adjustments in order to better their condition, procedure, or outcomes.
- Built-In Rapport. Nurses are taught to build rapport with patients. Building open communication, empathy, and trust, are everyday skills for nurses. Understanding the best way to connect with a patient to empower them to get healthier, manage their condition, and fulfil organization goals is a delicate skill that your nurses are experts with.
How to Leverage Nurse’s Trust to Offer Patient’s HealthCare Technology
If you’ve found a digital healthcare solution that you believe in and you think your patients, claimants or injured workers would truly benefit, the next step is getting it in the hands of those who could benefit. This is something that you will rely on your frontline team of nurses and nurse case managers to really own.
Here are the 5 ways to empower your nurse case managers to really drive patient adoption of your digital solution.
- Get the Entire Team on the Same Page. It’s critical that executives, nurse managers, and nurses are all synched on why the digital healthcare solution is beneficial to patients and the organization. If everyone believes in the technology being offered, has the power to shape and iterate on the technology, and sees how patients will be more satisfied, have better outcomes, etc., then the solution can actually be helpful.
- Dedicated Team. Building a team around the technology you’re bringing on, creating ‘team leads’, and rewarding “star performers” that take on a bigger role in promoting the technology, sharing feedback, managing training, etc., really keeps the team together and all eyes on the prize.
- Understand the Technology Through and Through. As a team lead of case managers, nurse navigators, or administrators offering a digital health product for patients, you need to know how the solution works, who the ideal patient are, the true patient benefits, time commitment required, etc.
- Clear Instructions to Get Patients Set-Up. When the onboarding process for patients is clear and consistent across the board, the team is aligned. A defined workflow that indicates which types of patients should be invited to use the technology, how they are introduced to the solution, what user support they will receive etc., is critical.
- Measure Success. Keeping your frontline team or case managers enthusiastic about your chosen technology means defining success. The team that offers your technology will make or break the entire program. Nurse managers and the frontline team should work with organization decision-makers to understand overall goals and how success will be measured.