Enhancing Cancer Care Follow-Up: Empowering Clinical Excellence

Healthcare story – Enhancing Cancer Care Follow-Up: Empowering Clinical Excellence

In the realm of cancer care, a healthcare provider’s commitment to patient well-being extends far beyond initial diagnosis and treatment. It encompasses a journey of individualized follow-up care – typically spanning many years – to support the patient’s recovery and health.


The Challenge of Traditional Follow-Up Care

As pivotal as follow-up procedures are, they are often plagued by fragmented communication channels, person dependencies, and inconsistent patient engagement. These issues lead to delays in crucial information dissemination, missed appointments, and – ultimately – compromise patient outcomes.

Typical challenges in follow-up cancer care process design:

  • Fragmented Communication: Traditional follow-up processes involve fragmented communication channels and personal dependencies, leading to delays and inefficiencies.
  • Patient Engagement: Patients are not involved in setting up appointments. A time is scheduled for them, and they may struggle to adhere to the appointments due to several reasons, including inconvenience and lack of awareness. Rescheduling requires more manual work and missed appointments waste healthcare workers’ time.
  • Data Management: Managing patient data for follow-up relies on cumbersome manual work and is prone to human error.


Embracing Technological Solutions for Better Patient Outcomes

Digital platforms, robots and AI offer a new-found transformative solution to the shortcomings of traditional follow-up processes. By harnessing the power of intelligent technologies, healthcare providers can streamline communication, automate reminders, and integrate patient data seamlessly across various systems.

Working in the field since the inception of our company, Digital Workforce is today a global leader in building tailored intelligent process management and automation solutions for healthcare. Together with our client, one of Nordic’s most prominent cancer care providers, we had the opportunity to develop and build a totally new end-to-end solution to transform their breast cancer follow-up.


What We Do (and You Should Do Too) to Transform Follow-Up Care for Long-Term Illness

At the start of the project, our client reported a wait time for scheduled testing and follow-up appointments that approached 9 months due to the before-listed challenges.

To alleviate the manual workload on healthcare workers and expedite patient care, we devised a fully automated surveillance solution, overseen by a cloud-based Cancer Care Follow-up Automation and Management solution, covering the entirety of the patient’s care period.

In the solution, appointments are automatically offered to the patients requiring timely check-ups and allowed to book themselves a suitable time. Automated orders are sent for X-ray mammography, and reminders about scheduled appointments are sent to the patient before their check-up. Patients may also independently reschedule their appointment.

After testing, a radiologist reviews the X-ray results, and the solution reads the reported results in the EMR system to determine the next steps.

Depending on the result, the patient gets an automated message containing their results and – if needed – instructions to book further tests or appointments with an oncologist.

The transformation of breast cancer follow-up care included:

  • Digital Platforms: Utilizing digital platforms to streamline communication between healthcare providers and patients, reduce delays and improve engagement.
  • Automated Reminders: Implementing automated reminders for appointments and medication adherence to improve patient compliance and reduce missed appointments.
  • Data Integration: Integrating patient data across healthcare systems to ensure seamless access and enhances the quality of care.
  • Personalized Care Plans: Enabling effective tailoring of follow-up plans to individual patient needs to increase engagement and improve patient care.


The Healing Power of Seamless Collaboration Between Technology & People

Elevating cancer care follow-up through technology yields significant benefits for both patients and healthcare providers. Improved patient engagement, better treatment adherence, and enhanced communication translate into superior patient progress and a more satisfying healthcare experience.

Projected results for the solution include:

  • Cutting patients’ wait time for appointments from 9 to 1 month
  • From 0% to 80% of patients being handled with no clinical involvement (neutral results)
  • Up to 72000 automated yearly tasks
  • Neutral results reported to patients in under 12h
  • 5x more time spent with patients that need it most


To learn more about how we enable healthcare transformation, watch Juha Järvi, Digital Workforce’s Global Head of Healthcare, discuss breast cancer follow-up care.