IT Departments in Hospitals: Role And Benefits

Caroline Duncan - Mar 7, 2018 11:35:00 AM

Hospital IT departments have an essential role to play in assisting hospital staff to manage and care for patients. These systems are so essential and ingrained into modern-day hospitals that it can literally be a matter of life or death if they stop working effectively.


IT department in health care


The IT department is not only responsible for managing clinical software and the other processes that help administrative staff to keep patient records and admissions systems ticking along, they also have an important role to play in ensuring medical wards, operating rooms, labor and delivery suites and emergency departments run smoothly.

Some of these functions include billing, registration, health information management, ordering and receiving lab results, and specialist software for things like radiology or IV pumps.

This is in addition to the usual tasks an IT department performs such as providing network infrastructure, IT security, server maintenance, software deployments and so on.

IT departments are also responsible for desktop support and running the help desk. The support staff working in this particular area don’t generally require a clinical knowledge, but support the computers, laptops, printers and other devices in a hospital.

Like in other organizations, they will take phone calls when users have issues and help to work through a solution or escalate to elsewhere as the first port of call. And while they aren’t clinical experts, having a basic understanding of various applications used by different areas of the hospital will help them to escalate specialist software and hardware issues to the right place.

Understandably, help desks in hospitals can be overwhelmed at times when there are many issues on the go at once, or even if there is a widespread outage that is causing mass frustrations and issues for users throughout the hospital. Getting systems up-and-running again when there is a problem is critical. Peoples’ lives depend on it.

Many hospitals and healthcare organizations around the world have turned to DeskAlerts to help manage their helpdesk communications and take pressure off IT staff.

DeskAlerts is a unique internal communications software solution that sends mass notifications to users in the form of pop-up notifications to all PC screens in an organization. That way it can be used to let everyone know at once if there is a known issue, taking pressure off help desk staff.

Where it isn’t appropriate to send notices to every screen in a hospital – for example if just one department or ward is affected – the software can be used to target selected users’ screens.

Our client, Hopital du Valais in Switzerland was looking for an easy-to-use solution to deliver targeted notifications to employees.

The company now makes use of the scrolling ticker tape messages function of DeskAlerts to deliver information about various incidents and maintenance activities to all affected employees rapidly and effectively.

They report that with DeskAlerts in place, the hospital gained a dedicated channel to inform employees about outages and incidents – even in the event when all email and phone communications are down.

Topics: IT Issues


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