Automation in Healthcare: The Key to Scaling Operational Efficiency

Published Date

July 6, 2021


7 minutes

Written By

ACL Digital

The healthcare system is infused with a myriad of paperwork and administrative hassles. Be it new patient registration, medicine prescriptions, emergency admission forms, insurance claims documentation, sensitive patient records or medical reports, paperwork is a critical component of everyday hospital workflow. These manual workflows are not only repetitive; they are also time-consuming, expensive, error prone and bring down efficiency.

Let's take a bit of a deeper dive to understand how intelligent automation has been playing a key role to overcome these challenges, improve patient experience and enhance medical procedures in the healthcare industry.

Automation in Healthcare: The road to accelerated Digital Transformation

By embracing intelligent automation with disruptive technologies like AI and blockchain, the healthcare sector has been re-imagining its technological landscape by seamlessly automating complex operational processes, financial functions, administrative tasks, insurance claims and management. This has helped the healthcare industry reduce the amount of form-filling, approval burden, and time-consuming tasks from the daily workload on its workforce.

As per a report by Data Bridge Market Research, the global medical automation market is expected to increase from USD 44,864.14 million in 2020 to USD 93,734.64 million by 2028. Owing to the increase in the number of surgical procedures and pandemic outbreak of COVID-19 the growth is anticipated at Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 9.8% during the forecasted period.

Benefits of automation in the healthcare industry

Let’s examine some of the benefits of automation in healthcare.

Increase in overall productivity

Automation streamlines processes, thereby improving the speed and efficiency of the day-to-day work and boosting the overall productivity. For instance, electronic forms speed up data input and form-filling. Automated document generation creates documents with accuracy in seconds from any system of record.

Improved patient experience

Leveraging automation in healthcare reduces repetitive manual work such as data entry and other administrative tasks. This allows clinical staff to have more time on hands to focus on interacting with patients which eventually improves the patient experience.

Improved quality and consistency

Manual tasks are prone to human error. Automated processes provide greater accuracy over time. Timely and accurate patient information available when needed empowers the healthcare providers to consistently deliver better quality services.

Accurate and informative EHRs

Data generation and analytics is critical to the healthcare industry for improving the quality of care and patient experience. Automating update and maintenance of EHRs saves time and improves accuracy. Accurate and informative EHRs helps healthcare provider with better insight to deliver quality and consistency care and makes the daily workload of administrative staff easier and more efficient.

Data driven insights

Automation improves data analytics and helps to collect and analyze a comprehensive amount of big data to provide data driven insights. Such data driven insights ensure speed & precision in medical diagnostics by helping the healthcare systems predict trends, improve performance and prevent disease outbreaks.

Automation Use Cases in Healthcare

According to a study conducted by McKinsey, all the use cases of automation in healthcare put together is expected to deliver an annual value of $350 billion-$410 billion by 2025. Let’s look at some of the use cases of automation in healthcare.

Hassle-free Patient Scheduling

One of the most stressful, time-consuming tasks in healthcare is scheduling and managing the appointments based on the availability of the patients and doctors. Chat bots gather patient’s relevant medical data required for booking an appointment and share it with the doctor, enabling a seamless experience with minimal manual intervention. Once the appointment is booked, a slot is blocked in the database and both the patient and the doctor get notified about the same.

Improved Claim Management

The claim management process in healthcare is a huge responsibility. From data input, filtering, and storage to dealing with appeals and paying the claimants, processing claims manually or with any type of software makes the error correction and meeting regulatory compliance very challenging.

Automation of claim management eliminates the errors efficiently and speeds up the claim process. The bots provide the technical support for compliance management by automatically populating insurance claims fields and applying the relevant regulatory laws on the same.

Efficient Workflow Management

Patient’s old medical records stored in an excel sheet is not easy to extract and access in a limited time when needed. This delays the treatment and leads to poor patient experience.  Automation helps to capture and save all the relevant information of a particular patient at the time of registration. Using bots helps the hospital staffs to automatically gather and access patient medical histories quickly, improving the workflow efficiency. Benefits of workflow automation include:

  • Faster tracking of patients’ health conditions
  • Timely and effective treatments
  • Customized treatment plan for individual patients

Automated billing procedures

On an average day, the hospital staff is expected to prepare, calculate and evaluate numerous bills, including doctor’s consultation, test fees, wardroom costing, and several other costs incurred by different patients during their diagnosis and treatment. Manual account settlement is time-consuming and one error can disrupt the flow of various activities. Automation helps to automate the billing process in healthcare, thereby improving accuracy and reducing human error. The programmed bots precisely calculate the bill amount at a faster rate to avoid payment delays and miscalculated bills.

Inventory and supply chain management

Automation helps supply chain managers track the inventory, such as gloves, needles, syringes, medicines, or PPE kits, offering greater visibility, more accurate forecasting, reducing costs, and notifying about changes in demand and supply patterns.  Benefits of automating hospital supply chains include:

  • Streamlined inventory
  • Minimized waste
  • Enabling timely, data-based decision-making
  • Reducing supply, labor and operational costs

Automation for a personalized and intuitive healthcare ecosystem

Healthcare is evolving at an unprecedented pace to adapt to the changing needs of patients. The ongoing public health emergency during COVID-19 has acted as a catalyst for driving digital transformation at breakneck speed in healthcare. The healthcare industry has been increasingly turning to automation and artificial intelligence (AI) to automate burdensome tasks that clutter up the healthcare system, enabling the healthcare organizations to revolutionize the patient experience.

However, the healthcare system still has a lot of opportunity to make the right use of intelligent automation to overcome several other healthcare challenges. And embracing artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data science is the best bet to achieve more productivity and efficiency with ease in the digital era.

Why choose ACL Digital as your automation partner for healthcare?

As your automation partner, ACL Digital helps make connected healthcare a reality for healthcare organizations. We start by discovering and analyzing operational processes to identify the bottlenecks. Our automation solutions combined with our strong domain expertise helps healthcare provider enhance operational workflows, automate repetitive analyses and procedures, and create a seamless patient experience. Contact us to explore our customized automation solutions for healthcare.

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ACL Digital

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