When a child is having surgery, the wait can be excruciating for the family; and periodic updates from hospital staff aren’t always enough to calm the nerves of antsy parents. In order to help make the wait less stressful, healthcare professionals at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. are using text messaging to keep parents updated during each step of their child’s surgery – a great example of how health IT solutions, such as electronic medical record software, are helping physicians provide better, more patient-centered care.
The D.C. hospital first implemented the MyCareText service as a trial program in March in order to provide parents with a steady stream of updates during their child’s surgery. After receiving positive feedback, the hospital decided to offer the service for all of its outpatient procedures. Parents can even choose to receive the text messages in Spanish instead of English, meaning that Spanish-speaking families are also able to benefit from the service.
Children’s National Medical Center employees understand that, for parents, waiting for their child to come out of surgery can be nerve-racking; and the MyCareText service is one way physicians can help ease the stress. “By providing real-time text updates to families throughout the surgery, we can communicate more efficiently, and hopefully help alleviate some of their concerns,” said Rahul Shah, the hospital’s medical director of perioperative services, in a press release.
Children’s National Medical Center was an early adopter of electronic medical record software. Now, with the MyCareText service, the hospital is further demonstrating its commitment to incorporating new technologies for the benefit of patient care and satisfaction.
For parents interested in taking advantage of the program, the hospital pointed out that the text messaging service they offer is, in fact, HIPAA compliant. HIPAA compliance training for staff members is of the utmost importance when any new technology is implemented.