So They Say Patient Care Is A Team Effort

The Presumption Of It Takes A Village To Care For A Patient Is A Valid One, But Materializing That Concept Needs A Next Generation of Healthcare Delivery Logistics

Illumination publication initially publicized this article on Medium!

Photo by Mimi Thian on Unsplash

Most of us familiar with the "It takes a Village to do something" idiom use it in collaboration amongst individuals towards a common goal. The subject is a rhetorically driven tagline that intends to bring a group of people together for the sake of one task. Healthcare and patient care, in particular, also needs a village. Indeed, given the current circumstances taking care of a patient doesn't start and end with entering and exiting the clinic exam room. It neither ends, leaving the facility as a whole. Today, medical care holds numerous points of care (POC), and those POCs often follow the patients away from the traditional village or the community that is typically stationary in medical facilities awaiting periodic patient check-in. Today we have a new generation of millennials who seek more options and convenience. Modern patients want more and more engagement in their self-care and are more than ever taking the role of decision-making partnership with their doctors than simply being passive participants. Quality and value-driven medical care (irrespective of who and what the determinant of that value is) are the fundamental elements in the modern healthcare village—given the overall care value is the upshot of the sum of values delivered by its village constituents. A patient-driven village is personalizing care through patient engagement. Collaboration between the healthcare village is the essence of such "engagement." Nevertheless, the key to creating a harmonious village atmosphere that can satisfy collaborative workflow while maintaining patient-centeredness requires the next generation of digital logistic infrastructure and strategy. Trust, communication, and leadership are necessary for effective teamwork in the healthcare village. The new generation logistics also accommodate the unique medical facility structure and operation style. Those hybrid work models and associated tools help staff deliver value to patient care. Suppose one anticipates extending the POC service to patients' homes, like telehealth, remote blood pressure monitoring, or heart rate analysis. In that case, they must also be able to ensure employees and clinicians have the opportunity to connect meaningfully with patients. A robust hybrid work model facilitates collaboration amongst all stakeholders and allows seamless remote and on-site patient care workflow without the disconnect from reality that often accompanies recently introduced remote encounter systems. Creating a Village to care for the patient with the logistics of a collaborative hybrid health city is the next generation of patient care. There are other elements in a collaborative health village that one must never cease to consider, like policies, procedures, and protocols. Infrastructure, as it implies, is the foundation of such a village. Personalization of medicine and healthcare seems to be inevitable and, indeed, demands a village that is both virtual and physical. However, since patient engagement requires flexibility, transparency, and accountability, one must ensure the proper culture of logistics adaptability. That will, in turn, confirm patient understanding, compliance, satisfaction, and medical staff efficiency, fulfillment, and contentment.

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