For those who don’t have time for 140 characters, or who don’t have much to say, I’ve created an alternative, smidge.com. The Urban Dictionary defines a smidge as a small amount of something, short for smidegeon.
This will revolutionize the interaction between patients and physicians. We all know how patients can be. Why should hospitals continue to enable them? We let them call us, fax us, email us, and tweet us. Enough already.
It’s time hospitals show a little backbone, show the patients who’s in charge. Let them know, “We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take it anymore.”
Here’s how smidge.com works. Each time a patient interacts with your hospital, give the patient their smidegeon account. Explain to them that this is their private way to communicate with you. It’s instantaneous, totally secure, and it operates 7 x 24 x 365. No more navigating IVRs, no more being placed on hold, no longer will they be transferred to another agent, never again will they be monitored for quality control purposes. Let the customers know that anytime they want to smidge, the world is theirs.
Explain to them that your hospital is doing away with archaic forms of interacting; closing its call centers, throwing away is fax machines, and deleting is presence on the web. What are the advantages to your hospital? They’re almost too many to document. Think of the capital savings. No more IT expenditures to support those millions of whining patients. No more CSRs complaining about not being allowed to browse the web, or about not getting their mid-morning break.
And now for the best part. In order to minimize bandwidth and storage costs, each smidegeon only allows the user to use each letter of the alphabet one time, meaning the largest smidge can’t exceed 26 characters. That being the case, there will no longer be any justification for the patient complaining that your hospital did not resolve their problem. The roles will be reversed. The upper hand will now go to the hospital.
How? Let’s look at an example. The patient wants to smidge the following change of address information, “We are moving on October 13 to 1175 Harmony Hill Road, Spokane, Washington.” Since smidges don’t allow numbers, we’ve already simplified the message, and the ease of entry. Now, if we translate the message into a correctly formatted smidegeon, we get the following message, “We ar moving ctb Hny l d Spk f u b d.” Now, how can you be expected to understand that kind of nonsense? If you can’t understand it, how can patients possibly blame you?
Paul M. Roemer
Chief Imaginist, Healthcare IT Strategy
1475 Luna Drive, Downingtown, PA 19335
+1 (484) 885-6942