Many organizations that delegate prescription renewal requests are moving to centralized workflows — where a dedicated team processes requests for several providers or clinics. Though we work with all health systems, both decentralized and centralized, we’ve found that those who are centralized experience much higher productivity. Here, we examine some key benefits to centralizing.
Because staff can become experts specifically on the renewal task, they are able to be uber efficient in processing them. Staff are much less likely to get distracted by other tasks as clinical staff would if renewals were done in a decentralized fashion. Centralization also enables easier tracking and reporting of metrics, allowing health systems to continually monitor, adapt, and further improve efficiency.
When all renewals go through the same team and standardized protocols, the level of consistency within the health system dramatically increases. As a result, centralization often has a positive impact on both quality and compliance. This is further heightened if the centralized team also performs patient outreach to close care gaps at the time of renewal.
It’s often easier to manage a smaller number of dedicated individuals rather than a larger number of non-dedicated individuals. Centralization allows more flexibility in scheduling, training, and staff management.
With renewals out of the clinic setting, clinic support staff are able to spend more time with patients, either on the phone or in person. Not only does this positively impact patient care, but some organizations have turned it into a new revenue opportunity. By allowing registered nurses to complete their own visits, health systems can quickly realize significant revenue.
While renewal requests may be a starting point for some organizations, many end up expanding their centralized center to include other activities such as triage, scheduling, and prior authorizations. The lessons learned during an organization’s move to prescription renewal centralization can be applied as more tasks become centralized.
Learn more about centralization and delegating prescription renewal requests by downloading our eBook, “Implementing Standardized Refill Protocols.”
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