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Medical Office Communication and Safety Improvements

Risk Management

By Jessica Vazquez - August 1, 2018

Improving communication and safety in medical offices play an important role in reducing patient dissatisfaction, injury and lawsuits.

Communication with hospitals, labs, and other healthcare providers is vital to evaluating a call’s priority by degree of urgency. Procedures for staff members who handle calls and reports should include how to:

  • Document and verify caller’s name, referral, and contact information
  • Communicate information to physician’s office for scheduling an appointment and record the call in the patient’s chart (including the date, time, and name of the person who received the call).
  • Develop a tracking system of patient’s records

In addition to communicating well with other healthcare providers, communication within the medical office is just as important. To improve communication and documentation, offices should put these procedures into place:

  • Schedule frequent staff meetings to build relationships and develop a better understanding of each person’s role
  • Document missed and canceled appointments as well as efforts to contact the patient
  • Ensure all physicians and staff know where to update and review patient records- especially allergies and medication changes.

Provide a safe environment for staff and patients and insure you have protocols in case of an emergency

  • Maintain a schedule for maintenance of equipment and report any malfunction
  • Have written protocols for managing medical emergencies and outside threats like bomb threats, intruders, and natural disaster.
  • Ensure all staff knows the location and use of oxygen, and drugs for emergent conditions

Improving office communication and safety is the responsibility of all staff and physicians. By implementing these procedures in the workplace, you can create a better experience for your patients.

For more tips or information, please see this article by The Doctors Company:
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