Along with the work of health professionals, the role of Health Managers is fundamental in prevention, early detection, and accurate diagnosis, effective and efficient treatment, access to innovation, and comprehensive care for patients.
Medical recruitment experts in locum tenens companies report an ever-changing dynamic in the demand for doctors and other healthcare workers as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, cancer care, as has occurred in many pathologies, has been diminished as a result of the pandemic. The impact of COVID has affected cancer patients in the first wave, not the second. Many saw their diagnosis and subsequent treatment delayed. This was due to the emergency treatment delivered to people suffering from coronavirus infection.
A report confirms that the number of new cancer diagnoses decreased by 21 percent during confinement. It is a fact that people whose cancer treatment is delayed, even just one month, have a risk of dying between 6 and 13 percent higher.
New Innovative Care Strategies
The current complex environment is driving a change in organizations towards new models of care and new organizational models. In this context, Health Managers must develop strategies to implement measures that help alleviate the effects of the pandemic and that promote the transformation of Health Organizations to turn them into flexible devices to address similar situations. Among many other measures, we need new forms of communication with the patient and more efficient computer services.
The participation of patients, including cancer patients, in the Health System, is also essential. From the point of view of Health Management and, in general, for the system, this participation encourages co-responsibility in managing their health and as a user of the system, it helps the transformation of the system and health services towards the organization focused on the real needs of users and patients and helps the evaluation of therapeutic, technological and health management innovations.
In short, it improves the quality of care and, with it, efficiency; however, materializing the participation of patients has some challenges, such as adopting a more strategic vision, including the participation of patients in the strategic plans of Healthcare Organizations and care processes.
At this point, the role of the Health Director in the strategy and materialization of patient participation in the system is fundamental. Directors must provide the necessary tools to health professionals, include them in the objectives of the Clinical Services and the organization’s strategy.
Digitization And Innovation In Cancer Care
During the initial period of quarantine, fewer cancer diagnostic activities were conducted, there were fewer new patients and more telephone attention. A transformation and digitization project needs to focus on three axes: telework, telecare, and telemedicine. The telematic consultation has been a great solution to lighten the face-to-face visits and it has been an essential means of communication. It is essential to develop a strong platform that connects and facilitates communication between patients and health professionals, to reduce the impact of cancer, increasing well-being and quality of life during follow-up and ongoing care of the patients.
A digital ecosystem can provide online support, as well as personalized health education and psychosocial support, through various digital tools such as a virtual campus or mobile applications. All these tools and channels should be made available to patients and always monitored by healthcare professionals in the field of Oncology. Such a service makes it easier to establish direct communication between professionals and patients, something vital when it comes to reducing anxiety and solving doubts, not only about cancer but everything that surrounds patients and COVID-19.
For the transformation of Healthcare Organizations, there is a need for empathic leadership and values to be able to guide professionals through change. We have to be innovative to ensure that we achieve the objectives of productivity, efficiency, and quality with the current situation or conditions. And combine the commitment to the patient with the commitment to the professionals.