Remote service delivery is the new normal for social service organizations.

Here’s how to make it work.

Amid the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, it’s important to ensure that your clients continue to receive essential supports and services from your organization. Thankfully, there are secure and easy-to-use web-based software tools and clinical and administrative practices that can ensure that your services continue to be available to those in need while maintaining the health and safety of your team.

Integrated Telehealth and Remote Service Delivery

One way to ensure continuity of care for your clients is to leverage telehealth and other remote service delivery tools so you can provide value even without meeting in person. For example, you could use a video conferencing platform to host virtual counselling sessions. Remote capabilities should be seamlessly integrated with your existing case management system so you can continue to input and track client and service information in the same way you normally would. This maintains your organization’s single source of truth and ensures that information doesn’t become siloed.

Integrating telehealth tools with your case management system also allows you to:

  • Track case and session notes with the same accountability and clarity as you would for face-to-face sessions
  • Manage service and appointment requests online in a client-focused and automated manner
  • Keep your staff safe and connected to your organization’s clinical and administrative operations
  • Extend the reach of your services to remote and rural areas without worrying about travel time and costs
  • Continue to bill your customers and have them securely pay for services via credit card or PayPal, reducing the financial risks associated with the current pandemic

Automated Client Engagement and Monitoring Tools

Keeping in touch with your client base—particularly those at greatest risk—is a challenge when you’re unable to see each other for weeks or even months on end. This can be overcome by setting up automated workflows to send out all the pre- and post-session documentation that you normally would, like service planning documents and assessment tools, for clients to complete online at home. This ensures that clients will not experience service delivery interruptions and allows you to continue the crucial task of providing them with the care they need.

Monitoring the general health and wellbeing of your clients is also essential at a time like this, and one way to do that is to send structured self-assessment tools on a regular cadence. seniors using client portal from homeYou should set up specific triggers and alerts within your case management system based on client responses so that concerning cases can be automatically escalated within your organization, as determined by your policies and procedures.

Utilizing innovative automation capabilities within your existing system provides a low-cost and high-impact way of keeping your finger on the pulse of your clients while ensuring that nothing falls through the cracks.

Another way to maintain a positive patient-provider relationship during this time is by allowing your clients to stay in contact with their service providers using secure messaging capabilities. This opens up a new channel for engagement and can help clients feel more at-ease in times of crisis and isolation. Enabling this alternative method of communication also gives your staff an opportunity to engage in clinical discussions with their clients as needed, all within the existing case management system.

Staff Collaboration and Productivity

During this period of social distancing, your staff are just as dispersed and “remote” as your clients. young man delivering services remotelyThis means it’s more important than ever to make sure all members of your workforce—including full- and part-time workers and volunteer staff across different teams and departments—stay connected, just like your clients.

The best way to keep everyone on the same page is to use a secure SaaS solution that enables staff to work online anytime and from anywhere and allows for quick distribution of important information. This can be done using communication tools that are built into your system, like messaging functionality, or ones that are hosted outside of but integrated with your system, like video conferencing tools. Video conferencing tools are especially useful during this time because they provide an effective way for staff to continue their care coordination, team meetings, case discussions, and other day-to-day operations, supporting as much business and routine continuity as possible in this time when everything seems chaotic and uncertain.

It’s a bonus if your system can also be set up to send notifications, alerts, and workflow triggers so that critical information reaches staff immediately, whether they’re logged into the system or not. At times like this, real-time access to information that can be acted upon in a timely manner and shared securely—and that is integrated with your business practices and clinical policies and procedures—is vital.

End-to-End Remote Service Management

The world is changing quickly, and it’s critical for your organization to have systems and processes in place that enable you to adapt and evolve alongside it. The reality of the situation is that your staff will be working remotely for the foreseeable future and it’s crucial during this time to have one central and accessible system to manage all your services and communications and keep staff and clients connected, and Penelope case management software can help you do exactly that.

Penelope is a secure, easy-to-use, and proven platform that ensures your clients continue to receive the care they need amidst these unprecedented and uncertain circumstances. Providing remote services is part of the “new normal”, and Penelope offers everything you need to support this method of care delivery and turn it into a core, lasting service pathway.

If your current system cannot support remote service delivery during this indefinite period of social distancing, you need a better solution immediately. To learn more about Penelope and its quick and easy deployment process, sign up for a free demo.

Written by Greg Stanley-Horn
Edited by Caitlin Feehan

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