How to make your discharge process smoother, more efficient and 10 times faster?

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How to make your discharge process smoother, more efficient and 10 times faster?

Most of the patient nowadays have a cashless card. In an average Mumbai hospital, upto 70% transactions are cashless. With the introduction of Gipsa and PPN schemes most of these cashless patients are package patients. At times patients and the relatives can be very irritable if you do not discharge, and allow them to leave the hospital on time. Making them wait unnecessarily for approvals is like decreasing your star rating per hour. So what can be done to make this process smoother, 10 times faster, and more efficient.


Hospitals should implement process and planning, like starting discharge planning on the date of admission. We all know a typical package patient where the final bill is already decided and the discharge card is almost similar most of the time, it should be half ready when the patient is admitted. A Super Clinical software will help you achieve this with automated templates. This will reduce bottle necks and give a wow experience to the patients.


In most of the surgical packages the implant & medicine bill is a pain. As the distributors are not always prone to faster deliveries they need to be buckled up.


Some minor hiccups may also come from the ward resident Doctors as they are always over worked and at times find it difficult if they have to write or type a complete Discharge card manually. They also have to search & compile the final summary to send it to the billing department., which actually takes around 3 to 4 Hours at times or even more. This can be taken care with proper protocols at place. A clinical software again with digital ICP’s and TAT enabling to determine the timings can improve your systems. Feel free to call if you don’t know of such systems.


You have to soon get rid of billing system which does not have an automated Appointment, Lab charges, Visit charges, Procedure charges, Digital reports, auto discharge summary generators, and E bills, depending on a billing clerk and the TPA coordinator will waste huge time, and is a sheer waste of good manpower.


A communications system, with fixed protocol always helps, care giving staff should have a meeting or a huddle every morning and discuss the number of planned discharges on the day may it be 1 or 50. A list should be published and circulated amongst the care givers as a daily activity. A specially assigned Discharge Nurse will give best results if trained accordingly.


The TPA desk best practice is to get a pre approval soon after the opd and fixing of surgical date. Hospitals should have a checklist with-ready consents and disclaimers about the timings and final approval rules and to be given to patients on admission. A TAT module in place will help you to improve further.


A printed lists of Do’s and Don’ts for all the surgeries should be available and given a day prior to the discharge or at the date of admission itself. This will settle many butterflies of the patients and their attendants.


Yes and the most important part the Consultants themselves need to understand and also explain the patients the hassles of managing a smooth discharge. They cannot just say to the patient you are fit to go home now. Instead they can simply start with saying things like, let me initiate your Dischar process once it’s over I will tell you when to go home.


Best practices demand that the consultants should themselves see the discharge card approve it and sign it themselves. Get a clinical automation system which has this provision of consultant approving a discharge summary even if he/she is not present in the hospital.

Thank you for spending your time feel free to call for any assistance or suggestions.

By Afzal Shaikh