Canadian Healthcare Technology: Home-care client portal improves organizational efficiency
GoldCare, a leading provider of healthcare information management solutions for home and community care, has recently launched a new web-based client & family portal named MyCloudCare. This portal empowers clients by allowing them to connect with their care team and organizational resources using their cell phone, tablet, or a home computer.
“The MyCloudCare portal enhances participation for clients by the services they receive,” said Al Hamilton, chief operating officer. “The client’s appointments, information on their care team and other available resources are accessible at their convenience. They also have the option to allow designated family to participate.”
By signing into the portal, clients can:
- access and make changes to their information
- view or modify or cancel scheduled visits
- access organizational information and resources
- see a picture of the worker assigned to their upcoming appointment.
This last feature may reduce stress for clients as they get to know their caregivers before their appointments, allowing them to make a personal connection.
“Having an opportunity to connect with their care team in the portal supports clients having more engagement in their own care,” said Hamilton.
For homecare organizations, MyCloudCare can increase patient satisfaction while reducing the number of phone-in requests allowing staff to focus on delivering a higher level of service.
When developing the portal, GoldCare engaged with VHA Home HealthCare – a GoldCare marquee customer – to determine features that would be of most benefit. VHA invited a group of their clients receiving service from VHA to also participate.
One of the requested features was to allow an organization to rebrand the portal as their own. VHA Home HealthCare adopted the name MyVHA for their implementation of the MyCloudCare client portal. The portal was completed and launched by VHA in December 2022.
“VHA Home HealthCare customers asked approximately 10 participating clients what they wanted from the portal, and how the information would be delivered,” Hamilton commented. Involving users in the design and review stages ensured that clients had their voices heard, and the portal would include features that were important to them.
The portal was designed to be easy-to-use and operates on a secure platform. It’s available from anywhere at any time on any device. All data is stored safely in the cloud. Clients have access to a training guide with step-by-step instructions to help them navigate.
Although client portals in home care aren’t unique, the end goal is about finding ways to better serve clients and their family. “Not many home care organizations currently offer a client portal, so it’s definitely something more will be looking at putting in place,” said Hamilton.
Regarding future development of the MyCloudCare portal, a few important features are in the works. These include:
- a multi-account feature that grants additional family members permission to access a client’s account. For clients who are uncomfortable in using technology, they can still call in to speak with a member of their care team.
- a Message Centre for communication between the client and care team; and
- a function where clients can rate their appointment experience.
Although the portal has only been available for a few months, it’s already making a difference for clients. Many clients used to call and wait to speak to someone about appointment details, but the portal has changed that. Now they can login and view the necessary appointment details themselves, improving their experience and saving time.
This article was written by Neil Zeidoenberg for the April 2023 issue of Canadian Healthcare Technology, page 17 (read PDF).