Leveraging Technology to Transform the VA Experience
Creating a best-in-class experience for our Veterans and their families
Spencer Draper, RN, Clinical Solutions Director, eVideon
From post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) to depression and anxiety, alongside physical traumas, medical needs and complications, US Veterans’ healthcare is a complicated matter leaving medical providers with unique challenges.
How can providers leverage innovative technologies to give Veterans personalized care that addresses their individual needs while supporting Veterans’ families in their care? How do medical centers capture and assess feedback, and implement improvements promptly and effectively? How do providers educate and communicate with Veterans to help them navigate their care once they leave the hospital or medical center?
VA hospitals nationwide are finding creative and effective ways to engage Veterans and create a best-in-class experience. Clinicians, administrators, and executives are eager to innovate to create supportive, meaningful experiences that lead to better outcomes. But how?
As the Clinical Solutions Director at eVideon, I have spent over 20 years partnering with hospital leaders to design interactive in-room technology that streamlines clinical workflows and optimizes the care experience for patients and care teams alike. I am also a military Veteran and I have the unique privilege of working closely with clinical and technology leaders at VA hospitals nationwide.
eVideon’s success with improving the VA experience is measurable. Many of our partners have enjoyed improved SAIL scores following implementation. For example, the Southeastern Louisiana Veterans Health Care System increased Care Transition scores by 7%,Patient Satisfaction Scores by 3%, and Overall Hospital Rating by 4.1%. And the Rocky Mountain Regional VA Medical Center increased scores for overall hospital rating by 11.1% and care transition by 7.7%. Veteran experience “pulse” surveys have played an integral role in the improvement.
Surveys provide real-time, actionable feedback that help staff make immediate improvements to the Veteran experience
Hospital staff can proactively measure quality and satisfaction initiatives like nighttime quietness or communication with clinicians. When an urban VA Medical Center learned on their SAIL scores that Veterans complained of noise at night, the group implemented a survey using eVideon to learn more from their Veteran patients. The survey helped them gather actionable data and helped them uncover that the noise was coming from the nurse’s station rather than from cleaning equipment, as they had suspected. They moved the nurses station and remedied the issue quickly.
VA hospitals nationwide have leveraged the surveys and feedback to improve satisfaction in real time. Dashboards give staff a complete view of their population’s feedback at a glance, and Veterans can use the in-room technology to request a variety of items and services. This means non-clinical requests go directly to the appropriate resource, streamlining workflows for nurses and letting them focus on clinical care.
Because ease of use and accessibility are key for Veterans, the services and feedback features are available on the Veteran’s TV. Feedback can be collected at anytime throughout their stay, and hospitals can prompt feedback with timed or triggered pop-ups notifications. It’s all incorporated into their care transition and discharge process, with each step documented along the way.
Advanced technologies in the Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) unit give control back to Veterans in a world where control has been taken away from them
Even Veterans with limited mobility can access education, relaxation content, and entertainment on their TV using voice control, sip-and-puff, or eye tracking technology to control the system. This is particularly useful in spinal cord injury units or other units where traditional manual controls aren’t an option. The Veterans have reported that having a modicum of control--even simply being able to change the channel on their TV--is something they so rarely get to experience. It’s a way to give control back to those who have had it taken from them.
Integration services to help further educate and engage Veterans in their care
VAs nationwide are also moving beyond traditional paper handouts to provide Veterans with a more tech-enabled education experience, helping them understand their conditions and ongoing care. Veterans now can start the education process on their own with high-quality videos that they can watch in their own time and re-watch as needed. In doing so, they have the chance to think about what they’ve learned and prepare questions for caregivers upon discharge.
It’s all possible via an integration with the VA’s proprietary EHR, VistA/CPRS and Cerner in the near future. It lets clinicians assign patient education from the tools they already use. Education can be assigned based on diagnosis, medications, treatment, procedures, and more. The system delivers content directly to the Veteran’s TV, and automatically documents completed EHR integration education back into VistA/CPRS--creating a seamless experience for Veterans and care teams alike.
Implementing Veteran experience technologies has materially impacted health outcomes. A recent survey showed that 72.8% of Veterans reported that they would change their behavior based on the education content they viewed via the technology.
At eVideon, we partner with the most innovative VA hospitals nationwide who are leading the charge in improving the patient and clinician experience. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you transform the patient experience.