8×8 Cloud Telephony and Unified Communications Services Securely Connect All Locations to Help Enhance Patient Care While Saving Millions in Capex and Opex
October 21, 2014, San Jose, CA – 8×8, Inc., a provider of cloud-based unified communications, contact center and collaboration services, today announced that ChenMed, a family-owned, physician-led organization with an innovative, industry-recognized primary care model for seniors, has deployed 8×8 Virtual Office services at 36 Chen and JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers and two corporate offices in six U.S. states.
Based in South Florida, the ChenMed family of companies provides integrated healthcare to at-risk seniors, many of whom are low to moderate income. ChenMed’s unique, outcome-based healthcare model significantly increases patient face-to-face time with both primary care and specialist doctors, and allows for same-day walk-up appointments when needed. ChenMed also strategically leverages end-to-end technologies to continually improve health outcomes and the patient experience.
“Our primary focus is on improving patient health outcomes, but we are keenly focused on improving the patient experience,” said Christopher Chen, MD, ChenMed Chief Executive Officer. “Our physicians typically see 350 to 450 patients a year – a fraction of the national average of 2,300 patients per doctor – so Chen and JenCare Neighborhood Medical Center doctors really get to know their patients. Our doctors build strong relationships with each of the seniors they serve.”
The results of ChenMed’s innovative approach continue to attract national and international attention. On average, ChenMed patients annually spend nearly 40% fewer days in the hospital, and patient satisfaction, as measured by Net Promoter Scores, is extraordinarily high. Chen and JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers enjoy Net Promoter Scores in the low- to mid-90s.
Phenomenal Growth Drives Need for Rapid Deployment and Nimble Technology
Over the past five years, ChenMed has experienced annual growth exceeding 60%, as new neighborhood centers have opened. Prior to deploying 8×8 cloud communications, ChenMed had a centralized premises-based PBX phone system that routed all company calls through Miami and then back out to geographically dispersed neighborhood centers.
Tasked with upgrading telephony companywide for a rapidly growing medical practice, ChenMed CIO Oliver Degnan, concluded that it would be significantly more reliable and less expensive to move ChenMed’s communications to the cloud, an IT infrastructure he understands very well.
“As a fast growing family of companies, we needed the elasticity and scalability of a cloud solution,” said Degnan. “With 8×8’s rapid deployment model, we were fully functional on one seamless solution across 38 sites and more than 1,400 users in five weeks, and we can quickly deploy new locations as we grow. This would be virtually impossible with any premises-based system.”
Only 8×8 Provides a Business Associate Agreement to Ensure HIPAA Compliance
At the same time, Degnan recognized that a cloud solution would have to comply with the federal government’s stringent HIPAA requirements in order to support ChenMed and its mission.
“Phones are an essential asset for us. They are the primary way we communicate with patients around frequent face-to-face appointments with their doctors,” he explained. “As such, our phone system is an integral part of our integrated healthcare delivery model. But as a healthcare provider, we must also ensure our patients’ confidential medical information is secure no matter how it is transmitted or electronically stored.” After evaluating several cloud-based systems, Degnan found that 8×8 was the only provider that offers the Business Associate Agreement mandated by federal HIPAA regulations.
8×8 Cloud Services Save ChenMed Millions
Another important benefit of 8×8 service is that ChenMed can now anticipate its communication costs and budget accordingly. 8×8 provides unlimited local and long distance service for a flat monthly fee, eliminating charges for individual calls. “8×8 will save us millions of dollars over the next few years,” said Degnan. “We no longer have to worry about our phone bills because we know exactly what the charges will be.”
As new employees join ChenMed, 8×8 can activate their phone service typically within an hour, accelerating the onboarding process. Similarly, 8×8 has helped ChenMed configure complex, customized call routing rules to align with the company’s workflow and ensure patients get the help they need, even if they call after hours.
“We are proud to be supporting ChenMed’s innovative healthcare strategy and exceptional growth with our industry-leading cloud communications services,” said 8×8 CEO Vik Verma. “HIPAA compliance has become a non-negotiable requirement for business communications, not just for healthcare organizations like ChenMed that deal directly with patients, but also for subcontractors who have exposure to sensitive patient data. With 8×8’s services, ChenMed can be confident that their patient communications are secure and that the cost savings they are realizing can be applied to fulfilling their healthcare mission.”
Leveraging Technology to Reduce Risk and Improve Patient Care
Degnan believes that other healthcare providers should not be afraid to embrace new cloud-based technologies that can improve patient care. “We deal with high-risk patients, so we need to reduce our risk on the IT side,” said Degnan. “Moving communications to the cloud is not risky if you work with a highly reliable, HIPAA-compliant partner like 8×8. By deploying the best possible communication system in our neighborhood centers, we enable our physicians to deliver the best possible patient care.”
About 8×8, Inc.
8×8, Inc. EGHT, +1.60% is the trusted provider of secure and reliable cloud-based unified communications and virtual contact center solutions to more than 40,000 small, midsize and distributed enterprise organizations operating in over 40 countries across six continents. 8×8’s out-of-the-box cloud solutions replace traditional on-premise PBX hardware and software-based systems with a flexible and scalable Software as a Service (SaaS) alternative, encompassing cloud business phone service, contact center solutions, and web conferencing. For additional information, visit www.8×8.com, or www.8×8.com/UK or connect with 8×8 on Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
About ChenMed, Chen and JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers
ChenMed is a privately-owned healthcare organization working to positively change American healthcare through primary care innovation. Based in Miami Gardens, ChenMed operating units include Chen Neighborhood Medical Centers, bringing better healthcare to Florida seniors; JenCare Neighborhood Medical Centers, bringing better healthcare to seniors in Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana and Virginia (Richmond and Tidewater); ChenTech, and Primary Management Resources (PMR), delivering outstanding technology systems and management consulting services to improve operations and patient experiences at diverse medical practices nationwide.
In late September 2014, The Economist featured the integrated medical practice, with lead noting that: “ChenMed is devoted to poor elderly people who may have half a dozen chronic conditions. It profits when they are kept well and their health-care costs are kept low.” The Economist concluded its profile by reporting: “Medicare patients at ChenMed spent nearly 40% fewer days in hospital than the national average.”