Process Modeling

19 May No Comments

University of Phoenix

Imagine this for a moment, you walk into a medical practice. What is the first thing you notice? If it’s a private office, you may see a couple of patients waiting in line to speak with the receptionist to assist with the check-in process. If it’s a community clinic or hospital you may see long lines and a lot of unhappy people. According to the official poverty statistics in California, 14.3% of Californians lack enough resources to meet basic medical needs in 2016. As you can imagine the community resources are overflowing with people daily, this can create a lot of strain on current business processes for community based medical practices.

Describe the current business process

The diagram above depicts a typical patient check-in process at most medical clinics. The patient arrives at the facility and begins the check-in process, normally waiting in a long line for approx. 10-15 minutes. This can feel frustrating to the patient, especially when the majority of them have appointments and would like to receive their medical services rather quickly. If the patient is new to the clinic then they will need to complete an enrollment packet, which could lead to increased wait times and increasing frustration. The technology available today can surely help with improving this business process.

Proposed improvements to the business process

The modified diagram above depicts a proposed solution to improve wait times in the medical clinics for patients. The start of the process remains the same, the patient arrives at the clinic and begins the check-in process. However, patients who have already enrolled and are returning for their follow-up visits could bypass the “waiting in line” part and head directly to a kiosk station. The kiosk will allow patients to check-in for their appointments without having to speak with the receptionist. The kiosk can be set-up to allow the patient to confirm their demographics, appointment time, and insurance information. The process should take 2-3 minutes to complete. Several kiosk stations should be made available to avoid any long lines to the stations.

This new process will allow most patients to quickly check-in and then take a seat in the lobby and wait to be called in for their appointment. Since most patients will start using the self-check-in Kiosk, this allows for new patients to avoid long lines as well. New patients will arrive, wait in a shorter line, pick up their enrollment package, and take a seat in the lobby to complete. The process should take 5-10 minutes to complete.

Conclusion

With the addition of the new Kiosk station wait times should be significantly shorter for both new and returning patients. This will also contribute to a speedier check-in process since there will be fewer patients standing in line at any given moment. Staff will also appreciate the improvements as their workflows will improve and seamless interaction will occur without issue. With technologies always improving it’s important to re-evaluate business processes to look for new ways of improving the old ways.




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