Search
Close this search box.
Search

Employees are the best source of information. A simple survey allows to find out which processes can be improved, what fears and hopes dominate in relation to digitization

How Can A “Worst-Case Scenario” Exercise Support The Digitization Projects?

Implementing digital health solutions requires building a culture of innovation, recognizing and addressing the needs of the staff in relation to the new technologies. But how should it be done?

Transformation, not technology

The first step in the digitization of the processes carried out in healthcare institutions is to learn the basic mistakes made when implementing other IT systems and to find ways to avoid them. When something goes wrong or not according to plan, software is most often blamed because it is too slow, because some errors appear, or because it is unintuitive. However, many case studies show something completely different. The most common reasons for the failure of an IT project include incorrect management of risks and of the digitization process, budget miscalculations and failures of the training plan. The computers on which doctors and nurses enter data and the structure of the IT system is usually of secondary importance.

Besides, technology alone is not enough. If we want to see real change, we should look at the big picture and introduce a culture of innovation. Transforming old work rules, habits and patterns is not easy and naturally encounters resistance. It will also not happen overnight. It requires us to work hard and work together. Good communication with all employees and transparent actions are also a must.

Visualization of failures

Digitization is a very complicated process, especially in healthcare institutions, where medical data interlocks with administrative data. The variety of professions (medical and administrative) and, thus, the variety of expectations, can lead some groups to engaging in conflict, sabotaging new solutions or even demonstrating considerable resistance. Everything cannot be expected to go swimmingly.

Furthermore, digitalization is a change process, and each change causes a natural disruption in previously established organizational procedures. Even if these procedures were not perfect before, it will take time for the IT system to streamline them, so it is very possible that, at the very beginning, the procedures will function even worse than before.

Digitalization is a change process, and each change causes a natural disruption

The transitional period between the launch of an IT system and the complete implementation of the planned way of its functioning is the most difficult. Frustration and dissatisfaction grow, employees feel stressed and lost. If such a situation lasts for a few weeks or even months, there is a high risk that the negative attitude will remain for longer, even forever. There are several ways to deal with this. The staff must feel constantly supported and understood by the management. System issues must be removed on an ongoing basis (hence why supervision is such an important stage of post-implementation). Regular meetings are used to gather opinions and respond quickly, if necessary. Moreover, staff should be informed of even the smallest successes.

What can go wrong?

The most important thing, however, is to be prepared for every circumstance. Most of them can be foreseen. It doesn’t matter if the organization makes first steps in digitalization or plan to expand already existing solution with new features. What will help is a conversation with those who carried out a similar project, and a short survey to learn what the staff is afraid of when it comes to digitization and what they think may go wrong. The exercise consists of visualizing worst-case scenarios. Imagine an expensive digitization project at a healthcare institution that turns out to be unsuccessful a year after its implementation. What could have been the reasons for this, what went wrong? Could this have been prevented, and, if so, how? Answers will help not only identify concerns but, above all, will help to prepare for many worst-case scenarios.

It’s one of the easiest ways to recognize the fears of the workers and to monitor the general approach to the digitalization. Medical and administrative staff should be also regularly surveyed. What makes work difficult? What kind of problems the doctors and nurses have to face and how – in their opinions – IT could help? What slows the work? Where are the bottlenecks in patient flow?

The results might be both surprising and inspiring.

Whixx

ICT&health World Conference 2024

Experience the future of healthcare at the ICT&health World Conference from May 14th to 16th, 2024!
Secure your ticket now and immerse yourself in groundbreaking technologies and innovative solutions.
Engage with fellow experts and explore the power of global collaborations.

Share this article!

Read also
Navigating Digital Maturity in Healthcare IT
Digital maturity vs. Reality. How to rethink the IT staff role in a hospital
Online health care icon application on smart phone
End-users of mobile health apps expect far more than a good design
Mayo Clinic started with its innovations for its ten million patients and demonstrated that its model worked, and that data could be ethically and responsibly used to drive innovations.
John Halamka: 'Create the Fear of Missing Out'
Balancing regulatory compliance with seamless adoption, healthcare navigates the integration of AI solutions.
A guide to implementing AI in healthcare amid the EU AI Act
AmyWebb-Stephen-Olker
Futurist Amy Webb claims that wearables will evolve into "connectables"
Digital health solutions empower patients to better manage their health and integrate care into their daily lives.
How to improve Digital Patient Engagement to streamline workflows
For people with diabetes, inaccurate blood glucose measurements can lead to errors in diabetes management, including taking the wrong dose of insulin, sulfonylureas, or other medications that can rapidly lower blood glucose.
Smartwatches measuring glucose level: Harmful but easy to buy fake innovations
How to introduce innovation and AI in healthcare organizations if there is no business model for prevention and quality – Our interview with Professor Ran Balicer, the Chief Innovation Officer at Clalit Health Services and founding Director of Clalit Research Institute.
I see no legitimate rationale for delaying the digital transformation in healthcare
Pioneering Cardiac Arrest Detection for Enhanced Survival.
CardioWatch Revolutionizes Cardiac Arrest Detection
Dr. Oscar Díaz-Cambronero, Head of Perioperative Medicine Department at La Fe Hospital, spearheads innovative telemonitoring initiatives revolutionizing patient care
Smartwatches Saving Lives Inside and Outside the Hospital
Follow us