What Innovations in Communication With Patients Should Medical Institutions Introduce?

Effective communication is crucial in health care as it grants providers valuable insight into their patient’s well-being. With the gained information, they are able to make a diagnosis and decide about the further course of treatment. Unfortunately, there is still a considerable gap in healthcare communication which can have potentially fatal results. According to a study from the late 1990s, around 44000 – 98000 patient deaths per year in American hospitals were preventable, as they were caused by poor communication.

However, technology is revolutionizing healthcare with new communication channels available might lead to a change for the better. Solutions such as VoIP systems, telehealth, remote health monitoring, and numerous apps create new opportunities for patients to contact their providers, facilitate information flow, and enable data collection.

As the demand for healthcare services increases, these solutions might be the answer to optimizing the processes of medical institutions, allowing health providers to reach a higher number of patients. But what exactly are those innovations, and why should they be used in healthcare? This article will try to answer these questions.

VoIP Phone Systems

Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), also called IP telephony, is a technology that allows for the transmission of communications through the Internet. It is especially useful for telecommunication as it makes audio and video calls inexpensive, high-quality, and straightforward.

Phone systems are a perfect tool to optimize the running of the administration, as the integrated VoIP phone service and software create a centralized structure that manages different channels of communication. It is an all-in-one patient communication software that allows making phone calls, sending texts or appointment reminders, requesting reviews, accessing patient information, and more – all from one convenient platform.

Insufficient administrative capabilities of medical institutions often hinder communication. The VoIP phone system considerably simplifies the process for both the personnel and the patients by automating tedious tasks and giving a choice between different modes of communication. What is more, the service providers might offer tailored solutions such as dental phone systems, which will be better for improving the overall patient experience and quality of communications compared to a general tool.


The term telehealth is used to describe the use of telecommunication technologies in healthcare. It allows medical providers to stay in touch with their patients without having to physically visit them. In other words, it is a form of remote patient care that uses modern technology to connect patients and doctors through video calls, phone calls, and chats.

To provide telehealth services for their patients, medical institutions employ outside telemedicine platforms or use their own custom-created sites. It is important to note that telehealth applications need to comply with the patient data protection standards set by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

Aside from enabling conversation between the provider and the patient, telehealth platforms include Electronic Medical Records (EHRs), e-Prescribing, payment services, and appointment management tools. Depending on who is using the application, different additional features might be available. For example, the providers will be able to record the sessions, whereas the patient can leave reviews after a consultation. It is another centralized system that combines all the necessary channels of communication in one place.

Contrary to what some may believe, telemedicine is not a recent innovation as it has existed in simpler form since the invention of the telephone. Yet, it has skyrocketed in popularity after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, which poses a serious challenge for traditional healthcare operations. Numerous restrictions have been introduced to stop the virus from spreading, some of which may prevent patients from visiting medical institutions. Hence arose the need for a solution where patients can access medical help from the safety of their homes and without direct contact with another person.

With the end of the pandemic, telemedicine will not be as required. Still, the technology ecosystem that supports it will persist due to its benefits. It will be especially attractive for people who live in remote areas or who work outside of traditional business hours. With telehealth flexibility and convenience, they will have much more options of accessing medical assistance, be it a conversation on their computer or telephone.

Remote Patient Monitoring

A form of telemedicine, remote health monitoring is rather an unusual form of communication, as there is no conversation between the patient and the provider. However, there is a passive exchange of information with various technical devices such as blood pressure monitors or glucometers remotely measuring the patient’s vital signs. The service is especially useful for managing chronic diseases or specific conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes, or asthma.

This technology allows medical institutions to provide better care for their patients while reducing operational costs at the same time. One of the most important benefits of remote health monitoring is that it allows health providers to continuously monitor their patients’ health status outside a clinic or hospital setting. Therefore, it helps reduce the number of visits the patient has to make just to obtain their test results or view health data.

Remote health monitoring also enables health providers to gather more details on their patient’s health conditions than they would be able to see during a standard checkup or appointment at a clinic or hospital office. As a result, they can better tailor their treatment plans based on the data collected over a more extended period of time.

What is more, in the case of an emergency such as a heart attack or hypoglycemia, the sensors will alert the medical institution in charge of the patient so that they may dispatch a team of healthcare officials.

In Conclusion

As we see, technology is revolutionizing the healthcare industry by providing new ways of communication and information processing. The mentioned innovations will help medical institutions to maximize their potential throughout the whole process. From the initial contact with a patient through the diagnosis and treatment sessions to the final review, VoIP phone systems, telehealth, remote health monitoring, and other tools may be used to increase efficiency and optimize operations.

It is worth noting that there is still room for improvement in the area of communication in healthcare. However, there are already numerous examples of effective solutions which have been adopted by medical institutions worldwide. The next step in this direction is to develop a technology ecosystem that would enable interoperability between different tools used by patients and providers. Then, the communication process will become even more convenient, as patients will be able to access their medical records, appointments, and test results from one place.

Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:March 24, 2023

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