If you know a doctor or nurse who works in a hospital, there’s a decent chance you’ve seen them carrying around, and perhaps cursing, a device that is rarely seen outside the medical profession any more: a beeper.
In an age of smart phones, the pager seems somewhat antiquated. At least, that’s what the folks at Mutare believe and they’re out to do something about it. The company, a Carousel Industries partner, has recently expanded their portfolio with a solution called Vital Link that not only replaces the beeper, but goes a couple of giant steps beyond it in terms of functionality.
Why the Beeper Still Exists: Security
The reason people continue to use beepers in the medical profession and a few others, such as government and some businesses, is security. Health care professionals, for example, must comply with HIPAA regulations, so they have to be careful about how they communicate private patient data. A pager addresses that – because it doesn’t allow you to send any data at all other than a phone number.
But therein also lies its shortcoming: it’s not a very effective way to communicate. A doctor who gets beeped typically has no idea what the issue is until he makes a phone call to find out. Maybe it’s a legitimate issue that requires his attention, but often it’s something a colleague could’ve handled faster and better, or that could’ve been resolved with a simple text message.
The Business and Patient Benefits of Eliminating Pagers
With Vital Link, the folks at Mutare, who have a background in call center notification products, offer a far richer communications experience. Vital Link is a hosted service that can integrate with an existing user directory and other communications systems or databases on the customer premise. End users simply download an app for their device, whether an Android, Blackberry, iPhone or iPad and they can start communicating more robustly in a HIPPA compliant manner.
The benefits are many, including:
- Making Doctors and Nurses lives’ easier. Eliminating the need to carry an extra device, the beeper. Instead, users simply use the phone or tablet they likely already have, a welcome development in the bring your own device era.
- Improved patient outcomes and lowered risk. An age-old problem with pagers is you never know when the recipient will respond and there’s no way to know whether the beep was received. Vital Link, on the other hand, sends a secure message – ensuring HIPAA compliance – and allows an immediate acknowledgement with a single click. Vital Link also allows two-way communication, which means many issues can be resolved via text messages rather than phone calls.
- Improved productivity and efficiency. The system provides a complete audit trail of when each message was sent and how long it took the recipient to respond. Analytics capabilities enable companies to use that information to refine workflows and improve efficiency, such as to improve turnaround times in testing laboratories and even patient bed turnover.
- Lower expenses. Paging can get expensive. Customers pay a monthly rate and can get hit with charges for overages. Often they need nationwide coverage for personnel who travel, thus further increasing expenses. And there’s infrastructure to maintain on the premise, including servers and radios. With Vital Link, employees use their own phones and it works over existing cellular and Wi-Fi networks.
Because it’s a hosted service and uses employee-owned client devices, Vital Link is simple to install. In fact, Mutare guarantees you’ll be up and running in less than 2 days after agreeing to use the system. And of course partners like Carousel help make good on that promise.
To learn more about how Mutare Vital Link can help your organization get rid of beepers once and for all, contact Carousel.