We have a singular mission when it comes to mobility in healthcare: make parking the simple part. People have more pressing matters when visiting healthcare facilities; they don’t need to worry about finding or paying for parking. The COVID-19 pandemic has compounded this. Now, people need healthcare facilities to be cleaner and more efficient than ever—and that includes getting into and out of buildings.
In our FLASHFuture ‘21 virtual conference, we brought together our leaders to discuss the future of mobility, and parking’s role within it. In short: we talked about how travel is changing. And while these changes are broad enough to affect most transportation, particularly within cities, they also deeply affect some specific industries more than others—healthcare is a prime example. Institutions like hospitals are taking robust audits of their parking systems to ensure that people can quickly enter and exit while balancing the revenue contributions that parking provides.
The team is composed of experts with intimate knowledge of the opportunities and challenges facing various industries. We believe that there are some important considerations that healthcare parking professionals need to keep in mind when adapting to new customer journeys and making parking easier. Read on to learn some of the top factors to focus on within healthcare parking.
Parking Should Contribute to Infection Control
According to the CDC, about 1 in 25 U.S. hospital patients is diagnosed with at least one infection directly due to hospital care. These healthcare-associated infections (HAI) are a byproduct of the amount of movement and human unpredictability within facilities. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the detrimental effects of HAI, as we’ve seen across hospitals or other facilities such as nursing homes. Therefore, facilities have been doing everything they can to prevent the spread of infection, including making as many appointments virtual as possible. But, sometimes, people can’t avoid getting the hospital or in-person care they might need.
When it comes time to park, consider the risk that exists when you have everybody placing their hands on kiosks for paper parking tickets, or pressing buttons of similar nature. It’s the one place of potential germ spreading that often has been disregarded. This can no longer afford to be the case. Hospitals would benefit from upgrading their parking systems with complete, contactless technology. With parking touchless solutions, there are multiple ways visitors and patients can enter a facility and park without touching anything. For example, users can obtain tickets by waving their hands with Motion.
Whatever systems you choose, it’s clear that the new demands of infection control will live on beyond COVID-19, and your healthcare parking systems should reflect this new direction.
Healthcare Security is a Risk—Secure Parking Can Help
Take a moment to consider the following mind-blowing facts. Stolen credit cards, once money has been restored to the victim, are typically worth 10 dollars. Stolen medical records, which contain social security numbers, are worth an average of 150 dollars. According to other security reports, this number can be as high as 250 dollars. This makes hospitals tremendous targets for breaches.
When this information is hacked, the breach can come from cracks in cybersecurity across the entire technology stack. Hackers can make connections between the people who park and patients they might be visiting. Ironically, today’s “smart” systems give hackers many opportunities due to everything being digitized and connected.
Case in point—a casino that was hacked through its fish tank.
That’s why it’s imperative that all points throughout smart information networks are secure.
In parking, payment card industry (PCI) compliance is critical. Your parking system should contribute to overall security by helping to close the loop between the hospital entrance and exit. does this by supporting more than 6 million transactions per year safely because of our unique cloud structure. We bring this added security to scale by managing PCI compliance and ensuring we’re always up to date, so you don’t have to. To bolster our defenses, we are becoming HITRUST certified, providing an extra measure of security by adopting a global standard of information safety. Moving forward, your healthcare parking will need to be one of the strongest links in your security chain.
Keeping the Humanity in Healthcare
Anyone who has had to, unfortunately, make recurring visits or stays in hospitals will be able to share parking woes. Parkers have to contend with outdated hardware and high prices, which lead to more stress than needed. (Many hospitals charge approximately 6 dollars an hour.) Compounded with multiple hours and days, visitors can spend hundreds of dollars—or more—just to park.
For healthcare facilities, it’s a real conflict of interest with a solution hidden in some gray area. The question becomes how to charge fairly for parking without interrupting or limiting people’s healing or grieving process. Not charging for parking at all would come with its own issues, such as the abundance of a free resource that can cause traffic while taking away from a hospital’s source of revenue. That’s why we envision creative solutions.
At , we’re thinking about the best paths for both worlds—parker and facility. Some of the solutions we’re working on are setting up multi-use passes, which parkers can use more than once for discounted prices. This pass can also be made digital, so parkers can pass it along to other people or family members who are visiting. The solution lies in saving time and energy for the customer.
Let Your Parking Help Your Tech and Admin
Healthcare providers would all agree that one of the biggest issues they face is no-shows from missed appointments. When a patient doesn’t show up to an appointment, it creates ripples down to the bottom line. According to research, a no-show rate of 12 percent costs more than $89,000 in missed revenue for a laboratory in one instance. It also creates inefficiencies because other patients could have used the appointment time. Eventually, this can contribute to overcrowded ER rooms and even higher healthcare costs.
The next evolution of healthcare parking includes the ability to creatively help with these issues. In the near future, a new stack of digital parking tools will be able to tell healthcare providers that you’re on your way to your appointment. If you’re going to be late to your appointment, based on traffic or if you haven’t left yet, providers can be notified with an ETA, so they can accept a walk-in.
Healthcare Parking Is Not Limited to the Lot
As you can see—parking solutions no longer apply only to specific parking spaces. Parking technology is now mobility technology, connecting to people at many points throughout their journey. It’s in this difference that the benefits arise for healthcare facilities.
Want to know more about how is working with healthcare institutions to modernize their parking? Visit us here.
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