How SMART OPD technology can help avoid queues at hospitals
New Delhi: You can now get away from long queues, overcrowding and waiting time at Hospital Out Patient Departments (OPDs) and clinics. A health tech start-up mCURA has introduced an integrated mobility platform, SMART OPD , to help patients avoid queues in hospitals. While the technology was put in place this week, it is yet to be adopted by hospitals.
The technology, which will be available through a free app, will enable patients to bypass long queues at registration and billing counters, labs, pharmacies and doctors’ chambers. Hospitals, meanwhile, will have to install digital tablets outside doctors’ rooms and consultation cabins.
Through SMART OPD technology, patients will be able to access ready information on their mobile phones or can check the tablets installed outside each consultation cabin on the inflow and outflow of other patients.
At the registration counter, patients will be given near-field communication (NFC)-based “Tap & Pay Card” (registration + cash card) and will be prompted to download a patient app, which stores all the medical records, medical bills or payment transactions. The app will also check the doctor’s availability, and give a real-time token broadcaster to help doctors as well as patients at investigation or diagnostic counters and pharmacies.
Non-smartphone users can use the Tap & Pay Card to access records, and can book appointments from the tabs or devices installed outside every doctor’s chamber and at all investigation counters.
Patients can also use “Tap & Pay” cash card to pay for hospital services easily. They will simply have to recharge it from the hospital itself and tap the card at the counter to pay doctors’ fees, investigation bills and medicine delivery.
It will also instantly calculate the wait time and provide the required information that one needs to have before going through various lab tests such as the requirement of having an empty stomach before a test.
“Labs, Pharmacy, doctors and even patients are integrated fully into the IT infrastructure through mobile devices. This helps facilitate faster filling of prescription, reduction in misreading of doctors’ handwriting, lowered waiting time for test results and automatic medicine intake reminders to patients. By automating everything, redundancy can be avoided and manpower can be optimized,” said Madhubala Radhakrishnan, founder and president of mCURA.
“This technology will also help the patients who need a family member to take care of them at the billing counters, labs and pharmacy. This will help and ensure smooth entry, consultation and exit of aged persons as there is no need of cash management at billing counters. The patients only need to carry the SMART OPD card to experience smooth flow at hospitals and clinics,” said Radhakrishnan.
Recognising the fact that doctors using technology at the point of care is a big challenge, mCURA also provides a clinical information executive to each doctor who is equipped with smart devices to support doctors for accessing patients’ prescriptions digitally. This also helps preserving doctor-patient relationship as the doctor would only be listening to the patient’s problems, without diverting his/her attention on computers.
Besides, catering to medical records in a chronological order through a single-view case-sheet, it will help doctors to review and enter their current findings immediately. Delivering customizable pre-defined templates for common ailments frequently seen in OPDs, it reduces doctors’ time per patient and helps improve patient intake. Moreover, by storing lab views of wounds and comparing it across time frames, doctors can measure treatment progression or regression.
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