In the dynamic realm of human services, organizations face multifaceted challenges while striving to deliver effective care and support for their communities. As such, old-school ways of doing things just won’t cut it. Behavioral health and human services (BHHS) professionals must turn to human service software.
But don’t just take our word for it. Here, we’ll present the evidence that shows how human service software can support the important work of BHHS organizations by improving quality, addressing culture and equity, engaging clients and employees, and optimizing human capital management.
Advancing the Quality of Behavioral Health and Human Service Delivery
Efficient data management is at the core of successful human services organizations. Human service software like electronic health records (EHRs) are designed for the industry. It provides a unified platform from which to manage and enable seamless care coordination and enhance the quality of service delivery.
Research finds that EHRs can improve the quality of care. One study looking at children and adolescents with mental health disorders found EHRs improved care in a variety of ways, including:
- Increased documentation of patient care
- Improved communication between providers
- Enhanced coordination of care
- Reduced fragmentation of care
Furthermore, improvements in quality of care were seen in the following areas:
- Assessment and diagnosis
- Treatment and planning
- Medication and management
- Monitoring of patient progress
- Follow-up care
Addressing Social Disparities and Improving Human Service Coordination
Human service programs must regularly address social disparities to deliver equitable care to all community members. This is essential to bridge differences in demographics such as culture, background, and circumstance. Human service software like EHRs and patient engagement platforms are powerful tools to support these goals by enabling fieldwork and services coordination in the following three ways.
Culturally Competent Care Delivery
EHRs support the implementation of culturally competent care by providing tools to document and integrate cultural preferences, language needs, and religious beliefs and practices. This information helps human services programs offer care that respects the diverse identities and experiences of their clients.
By recognizing and valuing these cultural differences, EHRs help providers build trust and aid in fostering stronger therapeutic relationships that can lead to better treatment adherence and outcomes.
Community Behavioral Health and Human Services Support
The use of health information technology (HIT) directly impacts care coordination between providers and between providers and patients. By improving communication, you can ensure that patients receive the most appropriate care — in a timely and efficient manner.
It’s for this reason that Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHCs) must have HIT systems in place. These systems support health improvement activities for populations, ensure quality improvement, reduce disparities, enable research, and promote outreach. Human service software such as a unified EHR solution can also support custom reports and data collection as well as privacy and security.
A Comprehensive, Whole-Person Care Approach
In the pursuit of addressing social disparities in BHHS settings, delivery of whole-person care is essential. Patient engagement tools play a pivotal role in achieving this goal by actively involving clients in their care journey and fostering a deeper connection between clinicians or social workers and patients or clients.
Patient engagement tools go beyond traditional healthcare or behavioral health interactions as they encourage a holistic understanding of the individual. They allow clients to share essential information about their physical and mental health and input data related to the social determinants of health.
By gathering data on social factors, such as housing stability, economic status, and access to education, human service providers can develop a more comprehensive action plan for a patient’s mental, physical, and social well-being.
Human services software should include patient engagement tools that offer solutions to everyday problems like access to care, peer support, communication methods, and educational resources. Patient engagement platforms empower users to take a more active role in their well-being, which leads to better outcomes.
One study that evaluated a patient-centered support program (PCSP) within the Veterans Health Administration found that the peer-led program could be linked to a number of positive outcomes, including:
- More knowledge about mental health and substance use disorders
- Reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety
- Improved quality of life
- Increased satisfaction with care
Social Services Software That Enhances Productivity and Employee Engagement
Human service professionals, including social workers and caseworkers, are often burdened by time-consuming administrative tasks. There are two main types of human service software that help healthcare professionals in this field.
Electronic Health Records in the Office and On the Road
EHRs offer configurable workflow functionality and automate routine talk, freeing up time for more meaningful client interactions. By optimizing workflows, employees can focus on the crucial work of providing compassionate and personalized support to those in need.
Mobile EHRs provide a portable, user-friendly, and efficient way to facilitate care for BHHS workers in the field. After all, they have immediate access to important client information right at their fingertips. Whether conducting home visits, leading group therapy, managing referrals, delivering community-based interventions, or conducting social work, case management software can help team members quickly and securely view client histories, treatment plans, and therapy or case notes.
Human Capital Management (HCM) Software to Combat Shortages and Burnout
The leading contributors to burnout among healthcare providers and human service professionals are heavy workloads and demanding schedules. HCM tools can assist in labor cost allocations — allowing employees to work across programs and roles where they’re most needed.
Additionally, flexibility in staffing — which is not easy to coordinate manually — helps employees achieve a better work-life balance. This reduces stress and improves job satisfaction.
Research that looked at 133 studies from 1980 to 2020 found that work flexibility correlated with a number of positive results, including:
- Reduced work-family conflict
- Increased job satisfaction
- Reduced burnout
- Improved mental and physical health
Human Service Software: Features to Benefits
As a leading provider of comprehensive software solutions for the behavioral health and human services field, ContinuumCloud takes pride in its suite of software solutions: Behavioral health EHR, the CaredFor app, and HCM software. Let's explore how these features translate into transformative benefits for organizations in the human service sector.
Electronic Health Records
Feature: Real-time data collection and secure HIPAA compliance
Benefit: Enhanced care coordination and confidentiality
Your organization can seamlessly collect and access real-time client data securely. This fosters improved care coordination among multi-disciplinary teams, ensuring clients receive comprehensive and tailored support.
The platform's robust HIPAA-compliant measures guarantee the confidentiality and privacy of sensitive patient information. This helps build trust between clients and providers — and keeps you in compliance with federal regulations regarding data and document management.
CaredFor Patient Engagement Platform
Feature: Peer support community
Benefit: Empower clients with a supportive network for lasting recovery
The peer support community feature in the CaredFor app supports clients in their recovery. Create a safe moderated environment for patients, alumni, family, and caregivers to gather and discuss their experiences and connect with peers who understand their journey firsthand.
Clients participating in the peer support community will find comfort in knowing they’re not alone by connecting with those who’ve conquered similar challenges. Moderated communities can strengthen motivation and offer a chance for members to share success stories and witness the possibilities of recovery, health, and personal growth.
Human Capital Management Software
Feature: Streamlined data management and scheduling
Benefit: Enhanced productivity and satisfaction
ContinuumCloud’s HCM software simplifies employee data management and scheduling automation, which frees up time and resources so you can focus on providing exceptional care. By reducing administrative burdens and streamlining HR processes, your organization can boost employee satisfaction and productivity, leading to a more committed and engaged workforce.
Discover the Power of Human Service Software Solutions for Your Organization
The use of evidence-based technology like human service software can be pivotal in delivering high-quality and culturally-informed behavioral health and human services. ContinuumCloud’s all-in-one platform offers a range of solutions, including behavioral health EHRs, patient engagement platforms, and cloud-based human capital management systems.
By leveraging these web-based solutions, all behavioral health service providers — including non-profit organizations, government agencies, and community-based programs — can improve patient outcomes, enhance productivity and employee engagement, ensure financial sustainability, and achieve optimal operational efficiency.
With a commitment to quality care and an integrated approach to technology, ContinuumCloud empowers human service agencies to make a lasting impact on the lives they touch. Connect with us today to learn more.