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Hospital staff need fast access to the latest procedural documents, patient forms and Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) to deliver the best possible care. Too often, busy hospitals struggle with old-school methods such as keeping shift notes on whiteboards and forms on local computers.
Microsoft SharePoint supports the volume of data healthcare staff leverage and delivers a platform that improves how they collaborate. SharePoint suits organisations of all sizes and allows configurations so you can tailor it for your workforce.
Document management SharePoint features and solutions
SharePoint includes features and solutions for document management that can greatly assist hospital staff in their day-to-day tasks. For example, your staff need access to the latest version of your discharge forms. SharePoint functions as a single location for keeping the latest templates for the documentation staff need daily.
SharePoint’s document management features include:
- Centralised storage and access to documents: SharePoint centrally stores all of your documents, so they are easy to find and access. This feature is particularly useful in healthcare organisations when multiple people need to access and review the same document.
- Version control: Healthcare organisations manage sensitive and confidential data that you need to keep updated. SharePoint’s version control features track document changes and allow you to reverse the changes if required.
- Confidentiality: As a healthcare organisation, you have confidential documents that require secure management. SharePoint includes powerful confidential document management features. Its secure file sharing system ensures that only authorised personnel can access confidential documents.
Furthermore, poor document management can generate inconsistent procedures. If specific procedures have changed within the hospital, your staff need access to the latest documentation and information.
Automate workflows with SharePoint features and solutions
Healthcare organisations need to follow processes regarding patient registration, documentation, record maintenance, etc. Often, healthcare workers will manually search for and follow these processes.
Workflows in SharePoint are a set of tasks or activities that people need to complete in a specific order. Hospitals can improve efficiency and productivity by automating workflows in SharePoint. You can customise workflows to meet your organisation’s specific needs and configure them to meet changing requirements.
SharePoint includes task tracking and allows you to assign tasks to people to meet deadlines, and everyone knows which specific tasks they need to complete. Part of task tracking includes Microsoft Teams integration. If your hospital has received numerous support tickets, you can quickly assign them to your staff, and then SharePoint will notify you and the team member if they do not complete their task by the deadline.
Creating and managing workflows can be a time-consuming task. Microsoft has removed traditional SharePoint workflows, and SharePoint Online leverages Microsoft Power Automate. This is great if your organisation already leverages Power Automate because you can use in-house skills.
SharePoint features and solutions for collaboration
SharePoint facilitates internal collaboration in healthcare organisations through secure, private intranets where authorised users can share information, documents and resources. Its centralised storage features make it invaluable for staff that need documents updated in real-time. For example, you can leverage SharePoint to create shared feeds where employees post ward updates and share documents.
SharePoint’s collaboration features include:
- A discussion board for collaborators to send messages about specific topics or documents.
- An events calendar for tracking upcoming events and deadlines.
- Offline synchronisation between a user’s device and the cloud.
- A list for creating tasks and assigning them to the appropriate users.
- Customisable lists to track virtually any type of information.
- External collaboration with physicians outside your team via SharePoint Online.
SharePoint’s document management features allow people to share files and track them with each other. It also includes a built-in commenting system to exchange feedback on documents. Finally, its secure file sharing system keeps confidential information safe, an essential requirement in healthcare.
Communication and ward management in SharePoint for healthcare
SharePoint maintains a feed of shift notes that you might traditionally keep on a whiteboard for all your staff to see. With SharePoint, you can access all of that information from your phone.
Emergency coordination via SharePoint is a rarer use case but an important one. If an emergency arises on the ward, you could send an alert to your staff from your phone and request their presence or attention.
Another element of SharePoint is that it improves the employee experience. Hospital staff often need to write reports or complete forms at the end of their shift. Many complete these when they get home and with the information they might have taken down on a notepad throughout the day. SharePoint allows staff to access and update the forms they need from anywhere, so those that commute on a train or bus can complete their forms while travelling home from work.
Privacy and permissions for SharePoint in healthcare
Microsoft SharePoint has a robust security infrastructure designed to protect healthcare data. The security features include:
- Role-based access control: Administrators assign users roles and permissions so they can only access the information and functionality they have the authority to access.
- Granular permissions: You can set permissions on a per-user basis so that employees can only see and edit the information relevant to them.
- Secure data transfer: SharePoint uses HTTPS encryption to secure data transfer between users and servers.
- Data loss prevention: Administrators can set rules to prevent employees from sharing sensitive information outside the organisation.
An essential feature of SharePoint is its permissions system. This system allows organisations to control who has access to files and folders. This is a critical feature in healthcare organisations, as it ensures that patient data is kept confidential.
SharePoint has sophisticated permissions systems with configurations to meet your organisation’s needs. For example, you can create a group of users and assign specific permissions to each group to control file and folder access.
Another advantage of SharePoint’s permissions system is that it can be integrated with Azure Active Directory if you have existing user accounts.
Experteq can deploy SharePoint for your healthcare organisation
Modern workplaces in healthcare require the right tools for communication and collaboration while minimising costs and increasing security. Experteq understand the healthcare industry and the compliance requirements that govern it. We firmly believe in the merits that a SharePoint solution creates for healthcare, and we can bring these to your organisation as well.
Please take a look at our Productivity Apps solution page for more information on how we can serve your modern workplace.