May 17, 2020

How to promote your hospital's brand message

Hospital Leadership
Hospital Leadership
3 min
Promoting the services your hospital offers, such as diagnostics, can extend the reach of your patient base.
Hospitals have a myriad of daily duties that must be undertaken, most notably making sure that each and every patient who comes through the doors is tre...

Hospitals have a myriad of daily duties that must be undertaken, most notably making sure that each and every patient who comes through the doors is treated to the best of the facility’s ability.

While patient care and safety should always be the top priority of a hospital, there are other tasks that can’t and should not be overlooked.

One of those is promoting the hospital’s brand.

Why branding matters

Without promoting the various services and products your hospital can offer the local community and surrounding areas (without major medical facilities), you create several issues.

RELATED TOPIC: 5 tips to thrive as an independent medical practice

Among them:

  • Lack of awareness;
  • More questions than answers;
  • Inability to grow your base.

So, what are some means by which your hospital can best market its products and services?

For starters, you may be inclined in today’s tech-focused world to steer away from the more traditional marketing tactics of mailing out pamphlets and pitch letters to the community—something that could be hurting your hospital’s ability to grow. Keep in mind that many individuals who go to hospitals for various reasons are older and may not even have a computer or easy access to one if they do. In these cases, more traditional mailings may be the only way to reach them.

RELATED TOPIC: 3 areas of focus to consider before undergoing a hospital inspection

If you are using the above-mentioned mailing tactics (and you should be), make sure the information offer is relevant and helpful, information that will not likely be discarded moments after arrival.

Blogging and social media

In the event you opt for more tech-focused brand promotion, two great vehicles are blogs and social media.

Starting with blogs, a hospital blog is a great tool for not only your administrative leadership, but also doctors (those who choose to participate) to keep the public informed on a wide-range of medical issues.

While many individuals today use the internet to learn more about their particular diagnosis, illness, surgery etc. they will often go to a known site such as a WebMD or others. Having your hospital’s doctors with their own blogs to discuss their specified areas of medicine can be very valuable not only for current patients to learn, but also prospective patients who may be considering coming to your facility.

RELATED TOPIC: How the health care pros use social media

If you do choose to have a general hospital blog, individual doctor blogs or both, make sure the information is informative and updated regularly. There should also be an area for patient feedback.

When it comes to social media more and more hospitals have turned to social networking to spread their brand message.

Your hospital can reap the benefits of social media in a number of ways, some of which include:

  • Talking about your products and services in real-time;
  • Noting upcoming healthcare workshops the public can attend;
  • Discussing the latest in generalized medicine and what is available for the public when it comes to treatments, medicines and more;
  • Interacting with not only patients or potential patients, but also other medical facilities.

Taking care of the public will always be the top priority for all hospitals, but spreading their brand’s message is something that they always want to remain current and healthy.

About the author: Miguel Salcido has been a professional search marketing consultant for over 11 years. He is the founder and CEO of Organic Media Group, a content driven SEO agency. He also likes to blog at and share insights in advanced SEO.

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Jun 11, 2021

How UiPath robots are helping with the NHS backlog

6 min
UiPath software robots are helping clinicians at Dublin's Mater Hospital save valuable time

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many hospitals to have logistical nightmares, as backlogs of surgeries built up as a result of cancellations. The BMJ has estimated it will take the UK's National Health Service (NHS) a year and a half to recover

However software robots can help, by automating computer-based processes such as replenishing inventory, managing patient bookings, and digitising patient files. Mark O’Connor, Public Sector Director for Ireland at UiPath, tells us how they deployed robots at Mater Hospital in Dublin, saving clinicians valuable time. 

When Did Mater Hospital implement the software robots - was it specifically to address the challenges of the pandemic? 
The need for automation at Mater Hospital pre-existed the pandemic but it was the onset of COVID-19 that got the team to turn to the technology and start introducing software robots into the workflow of doctors and nurses. 

The pandemic placed an increased administrative strain on the Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) department at Mater Hospital in Dublin. To combat the problem and ensure that nurses could spend more time with their patients and less time on admin, the IPC deployed its first software robots in March 2020. 

The IPC at Mater plans to continue using robots to manage data around drug resistant microbes such as MRSA once the COVID-19 crisis subsides. 

What tasks do they perform? 
In the IPC at Mater Hospital, software robots have taken the task of reporting COVID-19 test results. Pre-automation, the process created during the 2003 SARS outbreak required a clinician to log into the laboratory system, extract a disease code and then manually enter the results into a data platform. This was hugely time consuming, taking up to three hours of a nurse’s day. 

UiPath software robots are now responsible for this task. They process the data in a fraction of the time, distributing patient results in minutes and consequently freeing up to 18 hours of each IPC nurse’s time each week, and up to 936 hours over the course of a year. As a result, the healthcare professionals can spend more time caring for their patients and less time on repetitive tasks and admin work. 

Is there any possibility of error with software robots, compared to humans? 
By nature, humans are prone to make mistakes, especially when working under pressure, under strict deadlines and while handling a large volume of data while performing repetitive tasks.  

Once taught the process, software robots, on the other hand, will follow the same steps every time without the risk of the inevitable human error. Simply speaking, robots can perform data-intensive tasks more quickly and accurately than humans can. 

Which members of staff benefit the most, and what can they do with the time saved? 
In the case of Mater Hospital, the IPC unit has adopted a robot for every nurse approach. This means that every nurse in the department has access to a robot to help reduce the burden of their admin work. Rather than spending time entering test results, they can focus on the work that requires their human ingenuity, empathy and skill – taking care of their patients. 

In other sectors, the story is no different. Every job will have some repetitive nature to it. Whether that be a finance department processing thousands of invoices a day or simply having to send one daily email. If a task is repetitive and data-intensive, the chances are that a software robot can help. Just like with the nurses in the IPC, these employees can then focus on handling exceptions and on work that requires decision making or creativity - the work that people enjoy doing. 

How can software robots most benefit healthcare providers both during a pandemic and beyond? 
When the COVID-19 outbreak hit, software robots were deployed to lessen the administrative strain healthcare professionals were facing and give them more time to care for an increased number of patients. With hospitals around the world at capacity, every moment with a patient counted. 

Now, the NHS and other healthcare providers face a huge backlog of routine surgeries and procedures following cancellations during the pandemic. In the UK alone, 5 million people are waiting for treatment and it’s estimated that this could cause 6,400 excess deaths by the end of next year if the problem isn’t rectified.

Many healthcare organisations have now acquired the skills needed to deploy automation, therefore it will be easier for them to build more robots to respond to the backlog going forwards. Software robots that had been processing registrations at COVID test sites, for example, could now be taught how to schedule procedures, process patient details or even manage procurement and recruitment to help streamline the processes associated with the backlog. The possibilities are vast. 

The technology, however, should not be considered a short-term, tactical and reactive solution that can be deployed in times of crisis. Automation has the power to solve systematic problems that healthcare providers face year-round. Hospital managers should consider the wider challenge of dealing with endless repetitive work that saps the energy of professionals and turns attention away from patient care and discuss how investing in a long-term automation project could help alleviate these issues. 

How widely adopted is this technology in healthcare at the moment?
Automation was being used in healthcare around the world before the pandemic, but the COVID-19 outbreak has certainly accelerated the trend.  

Automation’s reach is wide. From the NHS Shared Business Service in the UK to the Cleveland Clinic in the US and healthcare organisations in the likes of Norway, India and Canada, we see a huge range of healthcare providers deploying automation technology. 

Many healthcare providers, however, are still in the early stages of their journeys or are just discovering automation’s potential because of the pandemic. I expect to see the deployment of software robots in healthcare grow over the coming years as its benefits continue to be realised globally. 

How do you see this technology evolving in the future? 
If one thing is certain, it’s that the technology will continue to evolve and grow over time – and I believe there will come a point in time when all processes that can be automated, will be automated. This is known as the fully automated enterprise. 

By joining all automation projects into one enterprise-wide effort, the healthcare industry can tap into the full benefits of the technology. This will involve software robots becoming increasingly intelligent in order to reach and improve more processes. Integrating the capabilities of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning into automation, for example, will allow providers to reach non-rule-based processes too. 

We are already seeing steps towards this being taken by NHS Shared Business Service, for example. The organisation, which provides non-clinical services to around two-thirds of all NHS provider trusts and every clinical commissioning organisation in the UK, is working to create an entire eco-system of robots. It believes that no automation should be looked at in isolation, but rather the technology should stretch across departments and functions. As such, inefficiencies in the care pathway can be significantly reduced, saving healthcare providers a substantial amount of time and money. 

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