How Rendia helped doctors serve patients and keep their practices going during a crisis
It’s been a long, hard year, for health care providers in particular. Whether you found yourself on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis treating patients, or saw your revenues drop as statewide shutdowns closed practices across the U.S., everyone in the medical community was affected by the pandemic in some way.
Rendia’s mission has always been to help doctors provide the best possible patient experience, progress the quality of patient care, and find success in their practices through empowered staff and satisfied patients. Now more than ever, there is a need for tools like Rendia’s interactive patient education software that enhance doctor-patient communication, build trust, and improve health outcomes.
Looking back over the year, here are some of the important issues we covered on our blog, and the topics our readers found the most helpful during this challenging time—from automating patient communication and education, to improving satisfaction and reducing burnout, to new advances in dry eye treatment and new opportunities in telehealth.
Resources for practices to stay connected with patients
Back in March when many medical practices began to shut down except for urgent care, we quickly shared easy, actionable tips on Staying Connected With Patients During Coronavirus (COVID-19). We emphasized that patients want to hear from trusted medical providers consistently during this time, and that visual messaging makes things easier to explain, understand, and remember. Just look at how rapidly the CDC’s “flatten the curve” image caught on, as well as all the videos showing people how to effectively wash their hands to prevent the spread of germs.
Practices that were already using Rendia had an easier transition to online patient communication and telehealth.
Practices that were already using email, social media, and digital patient education tools fared the best. It’s as easy to share Rendia videos on any of your online platforms as it is in your waiting room or exam room. That also gave our customers a head start when it came to offering telehealth.
Rendia users already had access to mobile health technology that they can continue to use to connect with patients and educate them remotely. Digital tools like Exam Mode and Outcome Simulator can show patients, even remotely, what their various treatment options look like, helping them visualize outcomes and make informed decisions.
To help doctors make the transition to virtual visits, we put together an infographic of Tips for a Successful Telehealth Visit that practices could send patients: download the PDF here. We also created a 3-minute video tutorial on Using Rendia for Telehealth.
Expert advice on increasing conditions and new treatments
COVID-19 was not the only health concern in 2020, however. We also saw an increase in myopia, which currently affects nearly half of all young adults in the U.S. and Europe and—often caused by increased time indoors and on screens—is projected to affect over 50 percent of the world’s population by 2050.
Rendia guest blogger Paul M. Karpecki, O.D., director of cornea services at Kentucky Eye Institute in Lexington, KY, and director of the OSD Clinic for Gaddie Eye Centers in Louisville, KY, discussed a promising new contact lens indicated to slow the progression of myopia, as well as other technologies needed to control and treat the condition.
Dr. Karpecki, one of the foremost experts on dry eye disease (DED), also wrote about why the ocular condition is on the rise during the pandemic, largely due to the increased use of screens, as well as the wearing of ill-fitting face masks. (By the way, longtime Rendia customer Darrell E. White, M.D., coined a term for this condition: Mask Associated Dry Eye (MADE), which occurs when exhaled air escapes from the top of the mask, passing over the surface of the eye and causing tears to evaporate.)
Dr. Karpecki shared a new neurostimulation device approved for DED, and discussed how using an interactive anatomy tool like Rendia’s Exam Mode can help explain the symptoms and anatomical causes of the condition to patients.
Our experts shared their knowledge of new treatments for myopia and dry eye disease as well as how to combat misinformation with patients.
Another expert Rendia was proud to share with our audience was Tara Kirk Sell, Ph.D., M.A., a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, whose research focuses on pandemic preparedness and public health communications and policy responses to public health emergencies, such as the Zika virus and Ebola outbreaks.
In an interview with Dr. Sell, she discussed the threat of the mis- and disinformation that spreads during these crises—meaning inaccuracies stemming from errors, but also false statistics and claims intended to cause harm. She emphasized the critical role of providers in sharing health information, because research shows that the person patients trust the most is their doctor.
To that end, Rendia released several new COVID-19-related videos in both English and Spanish for doctors to share with patients, for explaining new safety and cleaning protocols to new waiting room and visitor guidelines.
Succeeding in business in a post-pandemic world
Rendia has always been dedicated to helping doctors do more with less, and this year that mattered more than ever, as many practices had to cut stuff and add additional tasks, and costs, such as sanitizing and safety measures. We suggested ideas for doing business in new ways, from moving everything possible online—patient intake, pre-appointment consults, post-op instructions—to maximizing your telehealth opportunities, proactively promoting your contact lens services, and capitalizing on the LASIK boom.
Reducing doctors’ stress, saving time, and improving patient education have always been central to Rendia’s mission.
As we said in a recent post, New Causes and Solutions for Doctor Burnout, technology can either add or relieve stress in busy medical practices. Rendia aims to streamline patient education to save time and encourage better outcomes. To know that we’re fulfilling our mission, we need only look to our many customer success stories, such as this Ohio eye care practice.