One of the first questions I ask hospital employees is, “What kind of phone do you use for your personal communication?” About 99 percent of the time, they name one of the latest smartphones. In other words, most people abandoned legacy-style brick and flip phones years ago. Yet in healthcare, the industry-standard wireless handsets continue to provide the same, old limited functionality: They only make phone calls.
Let’s take a look at what you’re missing with my David Letterman-style list, Top 10 Things You Will Never Do on a Legacy Phone:
10. Use a presence-based directory to see if care team members are at work and available.
9. Use Favorites or Search to find and contact care team members immediately.
8. Send text messages on a full keyboard to respond to requests quickly and quietly.
7. Work from an automatically generated and prioritized task list of alarms and texts.
6. Access EMR and record patient vitals at the bedside.
5. View and respond to alarm details in an easy-to-read format on a touchscreen.
4. Access drug identification and interaction reference tools and hospital-specific protocols.
3. Translate for non-English-speaking patients and family members.
2. Photograph and upload wound care documentation.
1. View a cardiac waveform in diagnostic detail.
By contrast, smartphones do all this and more. With a smartphone platform that can be customized for your hospital system and even for specific units, the list of ways caregivers can use a Voalte iPhone gets longer every day.
You upgraded your personal phone years ago. Isn’t it time to upgrade the communication tool you provide to your caregivers?