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As with any big industry gathering, one of the best things about the time we spent at NHIA this year was seeing old friends and colleagues and meeting those who are new to the industry or new to leadership roles. When these gatherings happen just once a year, it’s important to take advantage of time together to reconnect and hear how things are going for the people who use our platform.

At NHIA, vendors represent not only EHRs, but also many different technology tools. It’s always interesting to see technology solutions being offered to help manage some of the macroeconomic forces the industry is facing right now, like staff shortages.

It’s also great to connect with customers we’ve worked with in the past year and learn how their Brightree solution is helping them. Implementing a new system can be a chaotic time, so it’s great to check in a few months post-implementation to see how they’ve been able to adjust to a new system and focus on their business and their patients.

Common themes

One of the most frequent comments we heard was about simplifying workflows. Having different solutions and different screens to accomplish daily tasks is cumbersome, so many of those attending said they’re looking to merge solutions and get on one system. In addition, the intake process is still a big challenge for a lot of folks. They struggle with visibility into referral and workflow status.

Better communication and collaboration tools are major needs. Right now they’re dealing with too many different modes of communication: phone calls, text, emails, portals and side conversations make it challenging to effectively collaborate with their whole team.

We also heard a lot of questions about reporting challenges. Today’s technology solutions provide a lot of data, but that doesn’t necessarily make it easier to pull what you need. How often is data refreshed? How easy is it to report on key areas, configure it to send to manufacturers or to gather data from multiple systems? Users are looking for more out-of-the-box options so they can generate the reports they need without additional setup.

One final comment we heard is that there are a lot of new start-ups of hospital-based systems, leading to questions about what that might mean for independent agencies. To stay healthy, smaller, independent organizations will need better visibility into processes, tools to streamline tasks and increase efficiency, and of course, great people to work for them, especially for intake. AI tools will most likely be key to automating redundant, labor-intensive tasks, helping independent agencies to succeed.

Meeting the challenges

When we discussed these and other challenges with attendees, it was gratifying to be able to show them how Brightree is already addressing some of their needs. For instance, we’ve made updates to communication notes that allow users to communicate with other team members on a specific topic, with real-time updates for new comments and messages. That keeps everyone on the same page with what’s happening with a specific patient or a single refill—it’s user-specific so new messages populate for you only if you haven’t read them. It helps users control their level of engagement and gives them details all in one view.

Brightree Digital Experience (DX) is another way we’re helping with the challenges of collaboration and communication. DX offers digital tools that offer insights into the referral process, and let you reach patients using text messaging, do assessments and forms online, and give patients updates on deliveries and refills. DX lets your patients choose the way they want to communicate with you. It’s quick for the patient and for the pharmacy, and makes it easier for physicians, nurses, the pharmacy team and your patients to effectively collaborate.

Looking for the best solution

In general, attendees told us that finding the right solution to meet their overall pharmacy business needs is not a “one-size-fits-all” situation. They’re looking at different vendors, different integrations and seeing who they can work with to create a solution that works for them. Brightree’s customizable platform can be a good way to start with the basics and adapt with the tools you’ll need to meet industry challenges.

Christopher Lieu

Chris Lieu, Pharm D,
Senior product manager

Christopher Lieu has always been passionate about the healthcare and technology sectors. This passion has led him to obtain his PharmD degree from the Medical University of South Carolina and pursue his MBA degree from Georgia Tech Scheller College of Business.

Since graduating with his Doctorate of Pharmacy Degree, he has completed a residency in Home Infusion Pharmacy. He has also worked as a Clinical Oncology Pharmacist as Northside Hospital. Currently, Christopher is the Clinical Product Manager at Brightree for our Home Infusion Pharmacy platform.

Cheryl Robinson, RPh, Senior consultant

Cheryl Robinson, RPh,
Senior consultant

Cheryl Robinson is a Senior Consultant with the Pharmacy Implementation Team and has previous experience as a Clinical Pharmacist in Home Infusion and Retail Pharmacy. As a previous Care Team Lead, Pharmacy Manager, and Pharmacist in Charge, she utilizes those experiences to promote efficient home infusion pharmacy workflow and data monitoring to enhance pharmacy performance. Her commitment to patient care and deep understanding of pharmacy operations help her provide critical insights to her customers. Cheryl obtained her Bachelor of Science, Pharmacy at Ohio State University.

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