Using Hospital Intranet for emergency response and communication
Tips for utilizing your hospital Intranet for emergency response and communication management during crisis
Effective and timely communication is essential during a medical facility’s emergency response.
Emergency situations are challenging to say the least, but keeping staff updated with relevant information can help clear some of those challenges. It is critical to ensure that everyone has the best information when they need it and is not overwhelmed by the volume of information found on the internet. All of the information challenges we face can be addressed when successfully utilizing an internal intranet portal for your staff.
One of the biggest hurdles for staff in planning for and responding to emergencies is getting the information to everyone when they need it. Things change rapidly in an emergency, and email may not always accessible to staff as they move through their day.
An intranet portal can be set as the default home page and easily accessible from any computer in the facility. In addition, many people try to find information for themselves by searching the full internet, only to get millions of results returned and making it impossible to identify good information from reputable sources.
There are many ways administrators can help minimize stress related to communications on an internal portal.
Some of the most common include:
Emergency Preparedness Policies and Procedures:
Having clear policies helps staff understand how to react or process patients during an emergency. For example, in a pandemic response, the facility may have a specific check-in process for patients suspected to be infected. Highlighting these policies can help the staff follow the appropriate guidelines during the crisis.
Rather than having information be given at the discretion of internet search engines, administrators can direct their staff to specific, reliable websites. Helping the staff clear all the internet “noise” during an emergency will make them all more able to care for their patients and themselves.
Keeping employees apprised of the latest developments at your facility is easily done with announcements posted on the main portal page. These announcements make the information available to everyone, and reduce confusion on what is happening and the appropriate response procedures that have been put in place.
During a crisis, it is key that staff know who to contact for what.
Creating an emergency contact directory streamlines channels of contact so that the proper sources are easily identifiable and reachable.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Having a single location on the intranet portal to address common questions enables staff to find information quickly.
A FAQ section can also free up department leaders as they can direct staff to questions that have been answered already, instead of responding to the same request over and over.
There are many other functions of an intranet portal that are helpful in keeping information flowing, such as calendars, educational materials and course registration, RSS feeds from local or national health organizations, scrolling alerts, and notifications. By ensuring that staff have access to the best information quickly and easily, your facility can be prepared to focus on providing patients with the best care possible.