Care management

Healthcare CRM 101: How it Drives Population Health Management and Saves Time

Abhinav Shashank
Fri 24 August 2018

“It’s nearly the end of the day, and I am not even halfway through.” This was the reply I got when I asked my old friend, Shawn, about his work.

Shawn is a care manager at one of the finest clinically integrated networks in the nation catering to over 600,000 patients. He manages a team of care coaches and makes sure that the patients with chronic health conditions are touched. On a non-busy day, he would himself contact around 10 to 12 patients manually after scrolling through an exhaustive list.

Imagine how hectic it could get for Shawn to keep track of all the patients, their health conditions, medications, appointments, and many more on his busy day. The life of every care provider is similar— one lapse and the day becomes a quest to reach the target.

Time is slipping from providers and care teams’ hands!

From long spreadsheets to the overwhelming task of searching data— every process is riddled with inefficiencies. Providers, care managers, and other members of care teams spend too much time shuffling through excel files and putting information together. The story doesn’t end here. Later comes the time wasted in reviewing records, searching for dropped codes, making exhausting manual calls to ask the same question, and a lot more.

Striking a balance here is very important. The problem is not that providers and care teams are too busy. It’s that they are not able to utilize the time doing what they want to— providing care to patients.

How healthcare CRM fits into the picture?

Healthcare CRM, like any other Customer Relationship Management solution, helps to organize, automate, and synchronize healthcare procedures, primarily to enhance the patient experience and simplify providers’ tasks. Healthcare CRM weaves together multiple sources of data to provide a holistic view of patients’ habits and activities.

It empowers providers to perform a multitude of activities, including:

  • Improve patient engagement with targetted outreach
  • Analyze patient population to identify at-risk patients
  • Establish a better communication environment
  • Get a deeper insight into the patient’s needs, and many more

Dealing with the main antagonist of the story with CRM- Patient Data

The most ironic situation here is that the hero and the villain of this time struggle story are the same— data. With proper data, care teams can do marvels in providing care, but this data is also the reason they have to struggle throughout the day.

Providers spend most of their precious time in extracting patient information through age-old EHRs, hopping from one system to another. Healthcare CRM technology provides the ability to segment out-patient information such as psychographics, demographics, social, behavioral, and many others. This ensures that providers are able to target each patient with the right information. With the right CRM in place, providers can have a comprehensive view of the patient’s journey.

Once providers have exact information of how the patient traverse through the care continuum, they can target specific segments and take necessary interventions without much hassle. They could then save the time spent earlier in understanding the medical condition of the patient because they would then have every record that they need right in front of their computer screen.

Healthcare CRM- The key to drive right patient engagement

Patients, undoubtedly, are the most important stakeholders of the healthcare. The prime focus of providers is their patients. The less time they spend in reaching out to patients, the more time they can spend on treating them.

The CRM implementation in hospitals covers two main facets:

  • In Patient CRM: It consists of all those activities which a patient avails from hospital facilities while receiving the treatment.
  • Out Patient CRM: It consists of all those activities which a patient avails once discharged from the hospital. It helps in maintaining and strengthening relationships with patients.

Healthcare CRM provides the right tools to analyze and understand patient preferences. It helps in assisting providers to stay in constant touch with their patients to get the exact idea about their habits, needs, and other preferences. CRM systems can facilitate open communication between patients and providers, giving providers the ability to be proactive about their care delivery.

With right CRM techniques, providers can function as a forecaster of patient needs, enabling them to make strategic decisions based on insights received with enhanced patient engagement. In addition to that, engaged patients can assist in driving better outcomes concerning their health and provider’s performance.

Minimizing the chances of patient loss with efficient CRM

Patients receive care across multiple settings in the network, and multiple physicians and care managers are involved in the care processes. However, providers waste a lot of time in aggregating these records to prevent letting patients get lost in the entire procedure.

The key to eliminating this problem is to follow the 3-R’s— ‘provide the right data to the right person at the right time.’ Healthcare CRM systems can assist providers to improve the care coordination process since the entire patient data is centralized for enabling an easy access. It can also simplify the sharing of data for patients who switch between multiple care facilities. With providers having complete information right at the point of care, they can know what is missing in a patient record and how those looming gaps in care could be bridged.

Hey there! We are on the flight to future

The goal of healthcare is to provide efficient and effective patient care, but not at the cost of exhausted providers. Providers have been putting in a large number of working hours, but the difference they could make in the lives of patients is still not enough. What they need are refined strategies to effectively manage their time and assist in joining the broken pieces of healthcare, and CRM can prove to be an efficient tool. It is time we focus on empowering providers with a little efficiency, and perhaps change their perception of care delivery.


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