For as long as they’ve existed, corporations from every industry have endeavored to paint themselves in a noble light. They minimize talk about the money and maximize talk about the greater mission. Sometimes it feels disingenuous, sometimes it feels sincere -- but with most businesses, the only real way to tell is to look at their track record and assess whether their values align with their actions.
The healthcare industry, however, is usually a different story. No matter which company you look at, the industry as a whole boasts arguably the noblest mission any business can have: contribute to the health and wellbeing of our society. This mission aligns well with their business needs: keeping patients healthy and happy creates loyal customers.
Of course, virtuous as their philosophies may be, healthcare companies are still businesses, meaning that they have all of the operational requirements that traditional businesses do. Operations, marketing, purchasing, hiring, maintaining patient paperwork -- depending on the industry sector, there’s so much going on behind the scenes that patient care is just the tip of the iceberg. It’s easy for these administrative tasks to pile up and slow down the care cycle, but they can have a profoundly negative effect on the patient experience. And if patients feel they’ve been relegated to the sidelines, they’ll start searching for new healthcare practitioners that are able to deliver better, more personalized experiences.
To be quite honest, healthcare patients don’t want to feel like they’re dealing with a business at all -- and in our opinion, they shouldn’t have to. Administrative tasks like paperwork and signature collection should blend seamlessly into the patient experience, not interfere with it.
Ironically, by focusing more on streamlining current healthcare business processes now, healthcare professionals can focus less on the business aspect of their job in the long run and more on the foundational values of their industry: keeping patients happy and healthy. Fortunately, we live in an era where the technology required to elevate patient care to the next level not only exists, but is easily accessible. Enter Salesforce and e-signature.
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Salesforce and E-Signature: A Perfect Match For Healthcare
Salesforce is an exceptional tool for both healthcare providers and patients. Their Health Cloud gives healthcare providers a detailed view into their patients’ health, valuable analytics and insights, and data management and storage solutions. On the other side, patients can connect to their health profile at any time, from any device, to track and manage their health goals in a way that fits their schedule. By using Salesforce, healthcare professionals spend more time on personalized care, and patients feel more like valued members of their healthcare organization.
Electronic signature solutions are the next step on the way to seamless patient experiences. While collecting signatures may seem like a trivial part of the business cycle, it’s actually one of the most important aspects of the healthcare journey in particular. Healthcare companies of all kinds need to process hundreds of forms that require signatures every day; they’re an unavoidable part of the patient experience and the day to day lives of healthcare professionals.
Although Salesforce can greatly improve other aspects of the care cycle, it doesn’t take much to throw everything off track: small snags in the system can have a big impact. If outdated signature procedures slow down any part of the patient journey, this roadblock will be remembered, no matter how fast and modern the rest of the experience was. It doesn’t make sense to be a forward thinker for most of your patient care, yet remain a laggard when it comes to this critical business process. Patients expect a seamless experience; there’s little room for error.
Because of strict regulations, healthcare companies also need signatures to be securely obtained and stored more so than other industries. Growing patient expectations, higher data security needs, and a faster-moving business world all make one thing clear: wet ink just doesn’t cut it anymore.
Salesforce E-Signature Solutions Create Seamless Patient Experiences
Like we mentioned before, patients expect a seamless experience across the entire care journey, and small hiccups along the way can derail the whole effect. Think about it: if you’ve had several great interactions with an organization, and one not-so-great interaction, which of those is more likely to stick in your mind? The unfavorable occurrence, of course, because it stands out -- and we’re more likely to remember negative events than positive ones.
We’re not saying that signing a form with a pen is itself a horrible experience -- but pen-and-paper signatures slow down the entire care cycle because they take longer to collect and process, which can compound other issues and frustrate healthcare professionals and patients alike. What’s worse, they represent an outdated way of doing business; an unfortunate blip in an otherwise modern experience.
Implementing an e-signature solution on top of Salesforce for healthcare fills in the gaps in the patient journey, creating truly seamless experiences. Patients can initiate a relationship with their healthcare provider, receive top-notch care, review their progress online, and sign forms on an as-needed basis without missing a beat. E-signature is the missing link that allows the entire journey to progress in a smooth, intuitive, modern way. In a time where the patient experience is everything, the gaps can’t be ignored. Salesforce e-signature for healthcare helps to ensure that you have all of your bases covered.
Salesforce E-Signature Solutions Keep Patient Data Secure
The healthcare industry is regulated by some of the strictest data security laws in the United States -- most notably the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH). As more and more healthcare data is transitioned into electronic health records (EHRs), the need for robust data security policies continues to rise.
Wet ink signatures are not exactly champions of data security. They’re subject to physical limitations like being misplaced or damaged. They take longer to collect and store, which makes these events more likely to happen. Additionally, since they don’t capture information like intent to sign or verifiable time and date, they’re easier to falsify.
Electronic signatures fill in all of the gaps that wet ink signatures leave open. They’ve had the same legal validity as wet ink signatures since the ESIGN Act was passed in 2000, and they’ve only grown more reliable and secure since then. Today, they’re among the safest methods for signature collection in existence, which makes them a great fit for the security-conscious healthcare industry.
E-signature applications require signers to express intent to sign and can use two-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security. E-signature solutions also record every event from document creation to signature, making it easy to get the full picture should a dispute occur. Finally, they can be automatically tracked and stored in Salesforce (if you’re using the right application). Although HIPAA does impose certain regulations on the usage of e-signatures, you can rest assured that the best solutions satisfy them all.
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Salesforce E-Signature Solutions Make The Day-To-Day Easier
E-Signature solutions for Salesforce create better patient experiences and are far more secure than paper signatures -- but they also make healthcare professionals’ daily lives much easier. They streamline otherwise slow paper workflows, potentially accelerating document processing time from days to just seconds. They speed up the purchasing cycle for medical equipment, getting professionals the tools they need when they need them. They keep patients happy by contributing to a seamless experience, which keeps professionals happy in turn. Finally, they allow professionals to be confident in their company and brand, knowing that it employs modern solutions and is serious about delivering great patient experiences.
Here’s the bottom line: the healthcare industry’s mission is honorable, but it’s no small task. In the modern world, the right tools are required to uphold the values that the industry was founded on. Treating healthcare like a business and focusing on finding the right solutions to optimize for efficiency is the way forward towards better patient care. Electronic signatures might seem like a small part of the healthcare world at first, but when you look a bit closer, it’s easy to see that they’re actually vital components of the modern day industry, and play their part in the greater mission as a whole.
It’s clear that e-signatures are the way to go, but choosing the right solution can be tricky. Searching for “e-signature” on the Salesforce AppExchange will yield around 40 results. Which solutions are HIPAA-compliant? Which solutions are easiest to use?
Look no further than native apps like our e-signature solution S-Sign. Native Salesforce applications are built on the Salesforce platform, meaning they are compliant with the same security regulations as Salesforce out of the box. They also mirror the look and feel of Salesforce, meaning they’re easier to use and take the meaning of seamless to a whole new level. Without much configuration at all, they can also do things like write critical patient data back to Salesforce and run Salesforce validation rules. They can also be easily automated, allowing professionals to spend even more time on what really matters.
Ready to start closing the gaps in the patient experience with a secure solution that’s purpose-built for Salesforce? Contact us to schedule a personalized S-Sign demo today -- leave us a message or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll be happy to hear from you!