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HISA recently sat down with one of our Premium+ Partners – Spok – to find out a little more about what they do and how they plan to transform Australian healthcare. 

CTRM Lab Results on iPhone black-APACIn a nutshell, what does Spok do?
We are a company that continues to enhance the way people communicate in critical situations. We deliver smart, reliable solutions to help protect the health, well-being, and safety of people around the globe. Organisations worldwide rely on Spok for workflow improvement, secure texting, paging services, contact centre optimisation, and public safety response.

What are Spok’s plans for the Australian market?
We are working with Australian healthcare organisations to evolve communications in today’s hospital from the disjointed, non-interoperating systems in place, to a single communications platform which allows for sharing of the important data – directory, on-call schedules, and device/contact preferences.

What is Spok hoping to achieve at HIC?
We’re excited to meet with industry leaders of the digital health world to hear about the exciting projects they’re working on. We are looking forward to discussing ways Spok can help put the patient at the centre of communications, giving clinicians the technology necessary to focus on quality outcomes, and for the organisation to focus on increasing patient satisfaction.

What’s the one thing that Spok is out to change?
Hospitals are facing an unprecedented number of challenges today. These include:

  • How to effectively deliver critical test results, fast and effectively to those on the care team
  • Interoperability challenges that arise with hundreds if not thousands of different applications implemented in a typical hospital—many of these don’t share data
  • Care providers complaining of alarm fatigue
  • Ensuring that the organization is messaging securely and protecting patient information
  • The increasing expectations around mobility such as bring your own device (BYOD) policies and mobile device management (MDM)
  • Who’s on call and how to best automate the notification process
  • Improving patient satisfaction scores

Spok’s view is that hospitals do not have to look at these as individual, unrelated challenges. We know it’s possible for one unified technology platform to help solve multiple challenges across different areas and departments of the hospital.

Spok offers a communications software platform that helps improve workflows across the hospital – from the contact centre to the patient’s bedside; and from doctors and nurses to housekeeping and transport staff. Because the Spok suite is an integrated set of solutions, it delivers information – quickly and securely – into the hands of the clinicians who need to act on it – wherever they are and on whatever device they’re using.

Think of Spok as the “heart” at the centre of all the communications in a hospital.

What’s been Spok’s greatest achievement to date?
Across the globe, we provide services to over 2,000 hospitals that run the gamut – large and small, public and private, adult and children’s, academic and community. And of these 2,000+ hospitals, we continue to have a 98-99% maintenance renewal rate, which is extremely rare in this space. We are very proud to earn this level of loyalty from our customers.

Additionally, our customers send over 100 million messages each month through their Spok solutions. Our technology is used by people who save lives – from a doctor treating a patient to an operator issuing an emergency code call – ensuring they can communicate safely, securely, and efficiently.

What might people be surprised to learn about Spok?
We give our customers a lot of options when it comes to the devices their staff can use. The flexibility to communicate across devices is no longer optional in today’s mobile environment. Some roles need smartphones or tablets, others need pagers, and others need in-building Wi-Fi phones. We make it all work together.

Where will Spok be in 5 years’ time?
Looking ahead, one way we see Spok technology evolving is in our view of a clinical message. We do not view a message delivered as the final stage of the process, but as the first stage. We are committed to evolving our solutions to be in line with the clinical workflow needs of today’s and tomorrow’s hospitals.
There is no question that Spok will continue to innovate and develop new healthcare solutions to solve communications problems within hospitals. I would expect that within 5 years, hospitals will be even more mobile and that Spok will become the hub of those mobile communications – both clinical and non-clinical. In general, we think there will ultimately be two key interoperable platforms within each hospital – the EMR platform and the communications platform. Spok will continue to find ways to interoperate with EMRs and be at the centre of communications that are needed to run the hospital.

For more information, visit Spok at booth #38 at HIC.

The Health Informatics Society of Australia (HISA) has merged with the Australasian College of Health Informatics (ACHI) to form the Australasian Institute of Digital Health on Monday 24 February 2020. This site will no longer be updated and will be preserved for archive. Visit us at the Institute! www.digitalhealth.org.au.