How to Develop a Quality Management System in a Hospital
Are you looking for a valuable information on how to develop a hospital management system? Good news, you’ve found it! This article will inform you about the main features of the hospital management software, its primary goals, requirements and users. You will also learn about the challenges commonly faced by developers of such system, as well as technical problems and relevant solutions.
In order to create a versatile, efficient and convenient system, developers must fully comprehend its future functions, users and supposed benefits. Only after this step, they will be able to plan and coordinate their efforts, choose the most appropriate technologies, anticipate potential problems and come up with the solutions. A hospital information management system, as its name suggests, is a complex software suite of interconnected program modules that serve to provide both information and management capabilities to a large variety of users.
The supposed users of a hospital management system may be generally divided into three categories:
- Hospital administration
- Doctors and other authorized employees
Each category should have a separate set of rules for clearance and restrictions within the system. This set depends on a user’s role and varies from unrestricted access granted to the highest administration members, to limited access to a certain portion of information for patients. For example, a doctor should have access to his patients’ medical data, but should not be allowed to get information on other doctor’s patients without permission. Every user should have a unique identifier, which associates the person with that person’s rank in the system. User with higher ranks and more permissions within the system may need additional means of authorization. Such authorization means may include, among others, a fingerprint of face scan, a keycard, a USB dongle, or voice authorization.
Key Features of a Hospital Management System
Software developers should realize that a hospital management system is required to provide a diverse array of highly specific features and functions, some of which are not used in other industries.
- Doctor timetables and scheduled appointments. Allows doctors to plan and browse their timetables. Also allows sharing such information with patients in order to make an appointment.
- Pharmacy monitoring, management and information module. Provides data regarding drugs and supplies currently in stock and allows ordering them in advance.
- Operation room availability schedule and management.
- Food management for patients’ diets and hospital cafeteria.
- Ward management. Provides various types of planning, tracking and performance reports separately for every single ward.
- Supplies inventory monitoring and purchase management. Deals with any consumables that do not belong to the pharmacy. Also includes fuel tracking for ambulances.
- Utilities expenditures, water, electricity consumption.
- Laundry management.
As you can see, this group of features will be invaluable for the hospital administration, as it helps to optimize work, coordinate current resources and employees, and increase profits.
- Patient registration. Allows registering a patient who comes to the clinic in order to obtain a Personal Health Record provided by this person or his family member. This is universally done by filling a template form.
- Patient admittance information. This function collects and maintains an Electronic Medical Record after the person is admitted to the hospital. This module also communicates with other medical databases in order to retrieve and update a patient’s complete Electronic Health Record.
- Patient billing, insurance and credit tracking.
- Emergency care module. Allows speeding up the process of registration and admission during pre-hospital treatment, such as in emergency rooms.
- Patient notification. Notifies patients about their appointments, medication times, discharge recommendations, etc. This function may be provided by a separate web or mobile application linked to the hospital management system. The reminder functionality may be also provided using existing messenger apps.
- Pharmacy information, booking and purchase for patients. Allows a patient to buy a particular drug immediately or order it in advance.
This list of exemplary features is far from complete, however, it is crucial for understanding how to develop a quality management system in a hospital.
Four Basic Requirements for a Hospital Management System Project
You may notice that hospital management is a complex process, and for that reason there are numerous requirements for a management system in a hospital:
A friendly and convenient UI/UX design is one of the top priorities for such applications, considering the large number of potential users. Both medical staff and patients need an informative and convenient system, which is easy to use effectively regardless of age and computer skills.
Ability to collect, store, process and output large volumes of information in various forms. The software is required to enable automation in order to handle an enormous amount of text data that encompasses different types of hospital documents: from patients’ medical histories and insurance to clinical trial documents and complaints. In addition, the system must be compatible with various types of media information: video and digital images, such as recorded operations, results of computed tomography and 2D or 3D MRI scans.
Compliance with all current data security regulations and protocols in order to protect data confidentiality and prevent unauthorized access to the system. Ensuring data safety is another top priority, as patients’ data and other hospital documents are highly confidential. Any leak of information, as well as data loss or corruption, may lead to potentially devastating outcome, including lawsuits and other financial repercussions, in addition to ruined reputation, all of which may force the hospital to close.
Rapid response is a necessity for a hospital management software, because often time is of the essence in medicine. The system should allow fast registration of new patients is case of emergency, as well as rapid retrieval of relevant data, such as a patient’s history, from the system archive or other hospitals’ databases.
Specified functions and requirements determine the choice of tools and technologies used to develop a hospital management system. Only experienced specialists can pick proper techniques that are able to provide solid functionality, high speed and positive user experience. If you have doubts, Python and MySQL are a good universal choice to begin with. Our team have successfully completed similar projects, so feel free to browse our case studies and see what technologies we used.
What Benefits You Can Expect From a Hospital Management Software Solution?
Since the software development process is based on the customer’s needs, the developers should fully understand the aims and expectations of the client. Though each case is unique, a customer generally expects at least the following advantages from a well-designed hospital management system.
Enhance productivity and facilitate daily routine. Software should simplify day-to-day activity of users, allowing them to fulfil their tasks faster and more reliable. As a result, work efficiency is greatly increased, with the significant reduction of possible errors caused by a human factor. For instance, hospital management system should provide an automated solution for quick update of patients’ histories to add or remove symptoms; alter a list of medications based on a patient’s condition, etc. This also helps to reduce downtime and queues for medical equipment and operation rooms. For example, every time a patient cancels his or her appointment, the relevant doctor’s schedule is updated and changes are marked in a real-time mode.
Promote communication between hospital departments and wards. A hospital is a complex mechanism that needs precise coordination and quick response of all its constituents in order to provide its services effectively. Hospital management system should allow obtaining relevant data in a digital or print form and in a fast, reliable and secure way. Exemplary types of data include analysis results, operation room schedules, pharmacy inventory, and other.
Improve patients’ experience during any interactions with the hospital. A reliable and convenient system will boost patients’ trust in hospital services, thus attracting more clients and enhancing the reputation of the facility. In addition, a properly designed system should notify patients about their doctor appointments or daily medication schedules, for example.
Optimize payment and billing. A hospital is a business company that includes all corresponding financial interactions between a service provider, executives, customers, suppliers, insurance companies, etc. The hospital management system should allow different types of payment for medical services and products, which will be a huge help for all financial transactions.
Provide structured data on staff performance. A management system brings an additional business advantage by tracking performance of hospital personnel and providing comprehensive reports to the administration. Hospital administration may use these detailed reports to identify, what types of hospital services bring more revenue, and what unprofitable departments should have reduced funding or should be closed, temporarily or permanently. It also helps to identify and resolve potential problems before they escalate and get out of control, thus, preventing damage to both finances and reputation.
To sum things up...
As you can see from this article, thorough development of a hospital management system is a complicated task. If you need such medical info solutions, better leave this job to professional and experienced developers specializing in such cases. We will create an effective, fast and reliable solution, customized for your specific needs, and will also provide comprehensive quality assurance to make your system flawless. Contact us and turn your vision of a hospital management system into a real and highly efficient application.