Lovelace Health System launched the Lovelace Care Concierge program in 2014 as a way to help patients connect with health care providers more easily following hospitalization. First available to TRICARE members at Kirtland Air Force Base, followed by Molina, the program is now available to anyone newly insured. Lovelace Westside Hospital CNO and COO Nancye Cole says this program will transform the patient experience and help improve their health care. “The ‘standard’ in the health care arena is for patients to find and make their own appointments with providers,” shares Nancye.
Patients who do not follow-up with a health care provider after hospitalization or a visit to the Emergency Department, are more likely to return to the hospital within 30 days. “When a patient comes to the Emergency Department, for example, and is told to follow up with a primary care provider and he doesn’t have one, chances are that contact will not be made by the patient,” explains Nancye. “He will likely continue to utilize the ED or an urgent care as primary care. This is not an efficient use of the ED.”
Lovelace Care Concierge helps close this gap. “With the Care Concierge program, those same patients will leave the ED knowing that they will receive a call within 24 hours or the first business day following the visit to not only find them a primary care physician, but make the appointment for them as well,” says Nancye.
What is unique about this program Nancye says is how it helps navigate patients through the health care system. “The program doesn’t stop after scheduling that first appointment,” she adds. “Following the appointment date, the Care Concierge will follow up with the patient to make sure they kept the appointment and were satisfied with the provider chosen. This will also occur with those patients needing a specialist after leaving the ED. Patients can begin taking proactive and preventative measures with their health to avoid future health care issues.”
Additionally, Lovelace centralized scheduling with one easy to remember phone number – 505.727.2727, staffed with a specially trained Customer Care Representatives during the hours of 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. “The challenges patients faced when provided the number for them to call was first of all being able to articulate what they needed, when they needed to be seen and why,” says Nancye. “With the Care Concierge, all of that information is already in the hands of the concierge so that the patient can rely on us to have their best interests at heart.”
“I would like the community to know that Lovelace truly cares about the people they see and treat. Continuity of care is such a key to improving the nation’s healthcare and we believe that our organization can and will meet those challenges in any way we can to help people strive toward a healthy life. Lovelace isn’t just about hospitals and clinics - it is about taking some of that worry and concern off the shoulders of the very people who have entrusted their care into our hands.”
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