PH Connect Helps Create Call Center Efficiencies Through Better Communication


Hospital call center is responsible for an average of 75,000 calls per month

Lisa Forte, who manages the Call Center at WakeMed Health & Hospitals, expected to see value from PH Connect, but was surprised by everything it really delivered. With responsibility for three full-service hospitals, more than 900 patient beds and 1,100 staff, Forte’s team fields an average of 75,000 calls per month.

Implement PH Connect to decrease the number of call by directly connecting physicians

Forte hoped PH Connect would help decrease the number of calls coming through her call center by facilitating direct physician-to-physician communication. PH Connect didn’t disappoint, leading to a 50% decrease in physician-to-physician calls. PH Connect also delivered a number of other benefits Forte didn’t expect.

“One of the biggest surprises is the impact PH Connect has had on my team’s communication with the physicians. Historically, call center operators end up being the middlemen between the referring physician and the staff physician. Some physicians simply don’t like to provide the information we need to effectively facilitate that communication, so the operator has to go back and forth between the two. That is not an efficient use of time or resources, is a frustrating experience for everyone involved and can lead to unnecessary delays in patient care,” Forte explained.

“PH Connect ensures that the right information is sent to the right providers, and also ensures that physicians receive the information in the manner they prefer. That allows the physician to immediately move forward and address the patient’s care, without losing time on time-consuming and frustrating back-and-forth communication,” she said.

Provider-to-provider calls through the call center have decreased by 50%. Over 80 ED arrivals each month now have key clinical directives from the PCP

Flexible & Customizable Platform: For example, WakeMed call center had a specific workflow to move information from an incoming phone call to the EHR ED tracking board for patients who were being transported to the ED. Through the PH Connect ticketing system functionality, the call center is now able to receive detailed clinical information on the web portal directly from a provider. The call center updates the EHR and uses PH Connect to alert a predefined group within each ED of an impending arrival. The adjustments to the workflow maintain the importance of the EHR but layer in ease of access for the PCP to provide important clinical information.

Forte is also grateful that PH Connect has helped the hospital establish one set of guidelines for secure communication. This ensures that everyone follows the same process, that messages are automatically sent to the right people at the right time, and that frustration and confusion about the who, when and how of provider communication is eliminated.

In the end, Forte believes that PH Connect has helped her team and WakeMed by:

  • Reducing physician-to-physician call volume
  • Reducing the amount of time it takes to manage each call
  • Improving call center employee (and other hospital staff ) satisfaction
  • Optimizing resource usage (including staff and facilities)
  • Expediting patient care
  • Improving patient satisfaction