How to Empower Nurse Case Managers to Use Your Digital Healthcare Solution

More than ever before, insurers, employers, and third-party administrators are partnering up with patient-facing healthcare solutions to achieve internal goals and overcome challenges. Choosing a technology solution that is proven to cut down healthcare costs, get injured workers back to full duty faster, or aid with a host of absence management challenges is a huge step. 

However, what fails to be emphasized during the hype of selecting a promising digital health product is: what's next? Specifically, how can you get your patients, employees or injured workers to engage with your preferred solution? Having the right patient-facing solution can be hugely impactful, but if your beneficiaries don't know about it or simply aren't using it, you're not going to move the needle.    

Ultimately, getting patients and injured workers to use your chosen digital healthcare solution starts with your frontline management team. Read on as we share the fundamentals of getting your team of nurse case managers and nurse navigators motivated to offer your digital solution increase patient engagement.

5 Ways to Get Your Frontline Case Management Team to Drive User Adoption

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Successful patient-facing technology adoption starts with your frontline management team.

So, you've found a digital healthcare technology you believe in and you think your patients, claimants or injured workers would truly benefit. But how do you get them to use it? Well, it starts with frontline leadership, commonly with nurse case management team leads. 

1. I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream For...Healthcare Technology?!

As a nurse case manager, or leader of a frontline team that deals with patients, claimants, or employees, hopefully you see the benefit of your organization's chosen innovative solution. Whether the decision to bring on a healthcare technology vendor came from the medical director, head of benefits, senior management, or was recommended by a trusted broker, it's pivotal that the entire team is on board. 

If you're a team leader that manages those who will be supporting patients with your choice technology, you've got to believe in the technology and understand the role it plays in helping to meet goals. Patient-facing technology that guides injured workers through their condition or optimizes for surgery are proven to be quite effective. Understanding why your digital solution is effective helps you to become a greater, more passionate advocate for your entire team.

To fully get behind your digital healthcare partner:

  • Ask your vendor for real-life case studies and success stories.

  • Ask for stats/ data that prove the effectiveness of these programs for patient populations like yours.

  • Speak with patients or users that have successfully used the technology. 

2. Strong, Dedicated Team

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With the third-party administrators, payers, and employers that have adopted our digital solutions, we've found the most successful teams are those who've been built by team leads and with technology in mind. In other words, teams that have been created specifically to deliver the chosen technology to patients or have been personally chosen by managers and team leads, tend to perform better. This isn't to say that your organization must build a new surgery nurse frontline or create a team around the technology you're bringing on (although we do see this happen). However, developing a leadership council or rewarding "star performers" that take on a bigger role in promoting the technology, sharing feedback, developing best practices, managing training, etc., is the glue that keeps the team focused on the digital solution. 

Read more about building a surgery nurse services team, and what this may look like with your digital health solution.

Having an aligned team that works well together, is fully behind the technology being offered, and understands the benefits for the patients being cared for, is critical. Without a dedicated team and go-to key players who understands the solution, who feels they play an integral role in the success of the program, and works well together, patient activations will be limited.

Sedgwick, the largest third-party administrator adopted PeerWell's musculoskeletal surgery optimization solution for patients and built a dedicated frontline team of nurse navigators to offer the technology. Segwick reported that, "After comparing surgical claims with and without our surgery nurse program, claims where these services were used achieved the following results for our clients: 45% less average medical costs; 45% shorter average hospital stay; 57% faster return to work at full duty."

What is musculoskeletal surgery optimization? Read about the fundamentals.

3. Understand the Technology You're Offering 

Beyond believing in your chosen digital health solution and understanding the benefits, it's critical that your frontline case managers and management know the ins and outs. If you've barely opened the app, tested the features, or ran through the program, how can you really offer the solution to patients with any conviction?

As a team lead of case managers, nurse navigators, or administrators offering a digital health product for patients, you ought to know:

  • Fundamentals of the digital healthcare solution (How long is the program? What does the program cover? What does a typical session/ lesson/ day look like? etc.)

  • Who the ideal patients/ users of the program may be

  • What benefits a patient can expect to gain from the solution may be 

  • Time commitment required for patients to be successful 

4. Clear Instructions for Team to Invite Patients/ Users

As a team lead or manager of a frontline who will be offering your technology to patients, it's important to have a defined workflow and playbook. Streamlining who should be offered the technology, how the patient is introduced to the technology, the materials and user support received, etc., is key for success. Defining the patient onboarding and activation process and creating clear, replicable instructions helps to measure success, aligns case managers, and optimizes results.  

When the onboarding process for patients is clear, well laid out, and consistent across the board, the team is aligned. With structured guidance, patients can confidently reap the rewards of your chosen technology. 

Here are some areas to create processes and requirements around:

  • How patients are invited

  • Defining which patients or employees qualify for the technology

  • The 'sales' materials and support patients receive

  • How a patient is onboarded 

  • The level of engagement you expect to see with new users/ patients

  • What success for this program looks like (at individual, team, and organizational level)

5.  Understand What Success Looks Like

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Keeping your frontline team or case managers enthusiastic about offering your chosen technology means not only setting clear expectations, but defining success. The team that offers your technology to patients truly has the power to make or break the entire program. The manager or team lead should work with organization decision-makers to understand overall goals of bringing on the digital solution, and what level of frontline performance is needed to deliver. 

When rolling out new technology and maximizing the number of patients or users who can benefit from a digital program, success may be measured by:

Ultimately, getting patients and injured workers to use your chosen digital healthcare solution means believing in the technology, building a great team of experts, creating processes, and defining success.

Learn more PeerWell's surgery optimization program for injured workers. Get your injured workers back to work at full-duty, faster.

Having trouble getting patients to engage with your digital health solution? Here are 5 ways to get patients to adopt technology.

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Hi, I'm Grace. I write and research about hip and knee replacements, PreHab before orthopedic surgery & ReHab. Content advised or co-authored with physicians (MD) and orthopedic surgeons (OS).

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