By Nick Nelson
Imagine that you’re stuck in the lobby of a medical clinic waiting to see your doctor, but you won’t be seeing the doctor until you first see a nurse.
And she’s running a little behind.
Oh, you’re going to need an interpreter? There’s only one available, and he’s on the other side of the building. Now it turns out the doctor had to run out because of an emergency so you’ll need to reschedule. You drove an hour to get here?
Oops, sorry about that.
It’s not a difficult scenario to imagine, and the degree to which inefficient communication issues bog down our healthcare system has become serious financial burden, customer dissatisfaction aside. There’s got to be a better way for patients to connect with doctors, nurses and pharmacists. That’s where Revation Systems comes in.
Defining itself as a provider of “unified communications platforms,” Revation made its name starting in 2004 by creating channels for bankers to connect securely with their clients online in a variety of ways. Now, the company is making a push into healthcare, and that’s where CEO David Hemler sees the future of the company.
“It’s our newest market,” says Hemler, “but our fastest growing.”
Already being used locally by many, including Fairview Health Services, Revation’s LinkLive healthcare platform enables virtual care visits over the Internet, making it so patients can speak with their providers face-to-face without leaving the house. The sophisticated cloud-based system handles queuing and call-routing, creating workflows similar to the ones already in place at most clinics.
The LinkLive software, which offers an interface that Hemler describes as “Skype on steroids,” requires no physical installation, and patients don’t need to set up an account to use it. The tool integrates multiple existing channels, from voice to video to chat to email, and most importantly it is completely secure and HIPAA compliant.
Aside from virtual physician consults, Revation’s platform makes it possible for pharmacists to prescribe medications and instruct patients on their use; for entire families to engage in conferences from varying locations; for multiple providers to quickly communicate and coordinate care; and for interpreters to do their work remotely without running all around medical complexes (Hemler suggests that the wait time for interpretive services could drop from 20-30 minutes to 20-30 seconds). The possibilities go on from there.
LinkLive Healthcare is priced in the form of a monthly subscription, with cost being based on the number of users (not patients). The idea is that the resulting increases in care quality and efficiency will make the service pay for itself, although that’s what Revation must prove in order to truly penetrate the market.
“Nobody’s that interested in having a video conversation with their banker,” quips Hemler, explaining the logic behind this new direction for his company. “I sure would like to see my doctor or my nurse. So we’re seeing it as providing greater utility to that industry.” He adds that the transitional nature of American healthcare in today’s climate creates opportunities like never before for smaller facilities to improve operations.