2. Communicating effectively among providers and care teams: The healthcare team must communicate appropriately, clearly and in a timely manner with one another. A multidisciplinary bedside rounding requires all caregivers — physicians, nurses, specialists, case managers — to visit the patient at the same time and discuss the patient's care plan together, along with the patient.
3. Educating patients: Patient education involves patients and their families in the care process and it helps ensure they have a clear understanding of patient's condition and treatment plan.
4. Following up post-discharge: With a call- back system, following up with patients after they leave to see how they are doing, if they are following the discharge instructions and if they have any questions is a proven method of reducing re-admissions. It is a very important step to assess new symptoms that indicate if necessary readmission needs to happen.
5. Improving the medication reconciliation process: This process is frequently a source of confusion for patients. Medication reconciliation simply refers to a review of all medications and dosages of medicine that a patient is taking. Hospital clinicians need to make sure patients are taking the necessary medications in the correct dosage while they are in the hospital, but they also need to ensure that patients and their care takers know what medication is needed to be taken and how once they go home.
Furthermore, hospitals also need to communicate the patients' medication requirements to outpatient providers to reduce to the risk of errors and the latter need to ensure patient's understanding as well.
So what happens if the patient speaks limited English?
And let's not forget that the use of qualified interpreters and translators is supported by the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964!
How can I ensure that my bilingual staff is qualified to interpret?
By preparing your bilingual staff on how to implement best practices when facilitating communication between your clinicians and Limited English Proficiency Patients, not only this training will help your organization reduce patient's unnecessary readmission by improving effective communication, but it will also help your organization:
* Reduce medical errors
* Increase patient satisfaction scores
* Help save costs by reducing the amount of unnecessary testing (when unclear on symptoms, doctors tend to run more tests to confirm or dismiss possible diagnosis)
* Increase patient flow in and out of hospitals
* Become the preferred choice among non-English speaking communities