The Clinical Concierge Services: Solving the Issues of Communication

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Introduction

The Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh (CHP) at UPMC comprises Clinical Concierge Services (CCS), an international department tasked with provision of administrative, translation, medical, hospitality and financial services. Communication plays an important role in organizations because it enables different groups of people to interact with one another (Importance of Communication in an Organization, 2012). However, CCS faces communication challenges that require action.

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The most important issue that would be addressed at CCS is the problem of communication breakdown. In order to identify the main problem at the organization, several methods were used to collect data. For example, surveys were used to gather important information. In addition, focus group methods where research participants interact with one another were used. This problem might lead to serious implications hence it should be addressed exhaustively to salvage the reputation of the organization (Importance of Communication in an Organization, 2012).

Issues to be addressed at CCS

The first issue is that concerns of clients at the international office are not responded to in good time. This disappoints them since they are usually eager to get critical information about the progress of their loved ones. However, when they report to the international office, they are not given information they want as fast as they would want it because of poor communication. This problem is partly caused by the fact that CCS does not have enough staff, which means that all services cannot be provided by one person. In order to solve this problem, it is important for CCS to establish a communication system that ensures international clients get information they want without delays. For example, CCS can employ additional personnel to offer efficient services to international clients.

The second issue at CCS that requires immediate response is silo mentality which is prevalent at the organization. It is caused by lack of collaboration among different divisions at CCS (Leistner, 2012). This means that members from all divisions should work together to enhance service provision at the organization. The major challenge brought about by this problem is that when a coordinator moves out of office, it becomes difficult for other coordinators to follow up cases that are not in their divisions (Data collection methodology, 2012). The problem of silo mentality should be solved by increasing collaboration among different divisions that play critical roles at CCS. The organization should organize workshops where all divisions are represented to enlighten workers on how they should work with their colleagues in all divisions. This would ensure that different divisions at CCS support one another for provision of quality services.

The third issue that CCS faces is lack of reliable flow of information within departments. Communication is intended to serve various purposes and this means that there should be consistency in the manner in which information flows from one person to the other. For example, personnel in one department fail to transmit important information that should be used in other departments to perform specific tasks. CCS should ensure that there is a constant flow of information from one department to the other. This can be achieved by providing a communication protocol which would enable employees to know specific people they are supposed to communicate with when they want certain issues to be addressed.

A Failure to Address the Issues

Failure to address the problem of giving international clients information in good time would cause most of them to abandon the organization and seek services from other organizations. In addition, failure to address the issue might lead to nervousness among international clients. This is because they require information about their clients and in situations where they do not get it, they become nervous (Kumar, 2010).

Failure to address the problem of silo mentality might lead to serious consequences at CCS because it would make it difficult for international clients to understand what happens at CCS. As a result, they would not be able to get the services they are supposed to get and this would make them decide to seek services from other organizations. Such a decision would be disadvantageous to CCS because the lifeline of the organization is its clients. It is therefore important to address this issue at CCS to avoid such serious consequences.

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Implementing New Hardware and Software

In order to solve the communication barrier problems that CCS is facing, specific hardware and software that would enhance service delivery should be put in place. In terms of hardware, the organization has pagers, phones and computers which are already functional. However, the hardware alone is not adequate to address the communication barrier problem.

The organization should purchase specialized hardware that would assist in tracking the physicians and other staff members when information is required urgently. For example, hardware that is sensitive to touch would be convenient to use when retrieving information that belongs to international clients in the absence of members of certain departments. In order to ensure that international clients get all the information they need without delay, CCS can make use of specialized software such as Client Data Administration System (CDAS) that manages data related to clients in organizations (Haddon, 2004).

CDAS has the ability to store, manage and retrieve data related to clients in an effective manner. Information that the software can store and manage includes medical prescriptions and client profiles (Reeves, 2008). This software would ensure that records for all patients remain up to date and family members can get information they want without delays once they request for it. The other type of software that can also be used to improve service provision at CCS is Cerner software. This type of software makes it easy for records to bestored electronically. The software is portable and usable in all areas of medical research, billing, medication/pharmateutical management and patient care (Kramer, 2012). This software would enable the staff to trace records of patients at any particular moment and use a messaging system to get in touch with relevant coordinators or physicians for crucial information (Findley, 2008).

Cultural Issues

In a bid to solve the problems at CCS, there are some cultural issues that must be dealt with. The first cultural issue is that there are some people who do not believe in the power of medicine to heal illnesses hence they rely on sheikh who is regarded as a knowledgeable imam or man and offers treatment based on religious quotes from the Quran and home remedies (Clausen, 2006). The second cultural issue is that people from different cultures have unique beliefs with regards to health issues. For instance, there are some cultures that prefer traditional medicine as opposed to modern medicine. An example of traditional medicine is the American herbal supplement known St. John’s wort or Hypericum perforatum. The third cultural issue is that some individuals attach great importance to family and religious values (Jcaho, 2004). As a result, they believe that it is important for one to be at peace with nature in order to be healthy. This would affect the manner in which such individuals are handled at CCS.

Conclusion

Once a plan of correcting communication barrier problems at CCS has been implemented, it would be important to measure its success. The first way through which success would be measured is by conducting periodic reviews on whether service provision at the organization has improved or not. For instance, international clients would be asked whether they get information they want without delays. The second way through which success would be determined is by determining whether there is improvement in communication among different divisions (Sapsford, 2006). This would be done by asking staff in various divisions whether they get the information they require. Moreover, staffing would be measured by assessing whether duties assigned to staff are completed in good time or not. The work plan would be assessed by comparing results achieved and the objectives set by the organization. Meeting set objectives would indicate success of the work plan.

References

Clausen, L. (2006). Intercultural Organizational Communication. Copenhagen: Copenhagen Business School Press DK.

Data collection methodology. (2012). Web.

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Findley, T. (2008). Cultural Competence of Nurses at the Hospital Bedside. New York: ProQuest.

Haddon, L. (2004). Information and Communication Technologies in Everyday Life. New York: Berg.

Importance of Communication in an Organization. (2012). Web.

Jcaho, M. (2004). Hospital Patient Assessment: Meeting the Challenges. New York: Joint Commission Resources.

Kramer, H. (2012). Health Care IT Provider Cerner Is a Game-Changer. Web.

Kumar, R. (2010). Research Methodology: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners. New York: Sage.

Leistner, F. (2012). Connecting Organizational Silos. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

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Reeves, S. (2008). Qualitative research methodologies: ethnography. Web.

Sapsford, R. (2006). Survey Research. New York: Sage.

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