Ramsay Australia is embarking on a “new era of technological sophistication,” organised around three themes: doctor connectedness, improving patient experience, and supporting business performance, according to CIO John Sutherland.
The vision for the road ahead is outlined in the organisation’s first Ramsay Technology Report. Sutherland said the new technology report reflected on some of the key innovations introduced in 2018.
The themes are evident in activities such as telemedicine services, the rise of robotic surgery and other medical technology, real-time bedside meal ordering, and a mobile-friendly patient portal to manage hospital admissions.
“We’ve been increasing our consumer connectedness, resulting in an acceleration of our digital footprint,” Sutherland said.
“Patients can conveniently find our hospitals and doctors from their smartphones, discover our services via the major search engines, book services directly online, and engage with us via social media. We are also helping doctors to improve their digital presence.”
For example, the number of Ramsay patients using online admissions has increased from about one in six people in 2014 to one in four people in 2018, he noted.
Ramsay CEO Danny Sims said over the next year the organisation will continue to accelerate its technology and innovation agenda.
“This includes growing our investment in the latest medical technology, introducing new ways to help our employees go about their work more effectively and increasing our focus on the consumer.”
Some of the plans include: implementing a seamless, integrated referral process for patients admitted to Ramsay day surgery centres; simplifying informed consent and online payments; and removing the need for patients to repeat the same information prior to admission, at admission and during their hospital stay.
Other initiatives involve allowing next of kin to follow patients’ surgical progress online and stay connected over high-speed, secure and reliable WiFi; and digitally closing the care loop from the hospital to the admitting and referring doctors.
“Technology is a critical part of our success and we’re working hard to modernise the workplace, give better information to make decisions and make the tools of technology easier to use,” Sims said.
“Technology is a journey, a ‘long game’, and I thank all of our employees, doctors and other stakeholders for your ongoing support of our efforts to become more digitally advanced.”