Providing Full-Spectrum Patient Care: An Interview with Alyson Vogel, P.A.-C

It’s true that Eden Health’s skilled providers are essential to our white-glove care. But they’re only half the story. What’s just as important is the way these providers work together to deliver thorough, coordinated care under one roof. This system is called Integrated 360 Care, and you can learn all about it in our free e-book, A 360 View: A Closeup Look at Integrated Care. You can also meet some of Eden’s care providers themselves in this new blog series and learn how they create healthier workplaces.

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What does integrated 360 care mean to you?

Rather than referring out for behavioral health or insurance navigation, we have people in our office that can help. We all talk to one another to provide complete, continuous care. A patient can message directly in our app, and they have access to all aspects of care, regardless of whether they have a primary care issue, a COVID-19 question, a behavioral health concern, or insurance question. The whole team ultimately circles back to the patient, but our clinic acts as a one-stop shop with integrative care.

Are you addressing behavioral health differently than you did in a previous role?

Yes I am. The office I was in previously didn't have direct access to behavioral health. So referrals took weeks, if not months, because they were all outside of the office. At Eden, we have behavioral health care internally and we can get a quick response for our patients.

In regards to our protocol, if somebody reaches out with a mental health complaint, a medical provider like me will do a video visit with them first to rule out any potential medical causes for their issue. Then we'll talk to them briefly about therapy and medications, if needed. At that point, we can refer them to a behavioral health provider, usually someone on Eden’s own team. By collaborating with an internal clinical team, the process goes a lot faster and we can approach the issue from multiple angles. 

Going back to integrated 360 care, can you give me an instance where you and your colleagues had to work as a team?

I had a patient reach out to me in a mental health crisis. I was able to jump on a video visit, assess them, and come up with a treatment plan right away. Our mental health team reached out to them, and our healthcare navigators got them the referrals they needed for more in-depth care. And everything happened within 24 to 48 hours.

This patient went on to get care through our behavioral health team. I followed up with the patient a few times since then, and they’re doing great now. If they had gone to a regular primary care office, I feel like it would have taken days to get a referral to see the necessary specialists—or weeks, even. And that’s way too long for someone in crisis.

How are you able to build relationships with patients better than you did before?

Eden Health is about personalized care. Providers like me have more time to spend with each patient. Most appointments are 45 minutes, so I get to know each patient a lot better than I would in a normal primary care setting.

At the office I worked in previously, I was seeing eight patients an hour, which looking back seems crazy. But that’s standard. Most places are just revolving doors. You're stressed when you're seeing your patients. And when you have a waiting room full of people, you can’t take the time you need with each one. At Eden, I never feel rushed. I can always take as much time as I need for each patient, which helps me build relationships with each of them. I would have never been able to provide that level of care in any other office.

Eden has a high satisfaction rating—4.95 out of 5. What do you think contributes to that?

I think because everything is just easy to use. The app is very user-friendly and patients can get all of their needs met in one place. They don't have to call somebody and get passed around from person to person. People appreciate that. They like the convenience of the app and having that one-touch access to a medical provider, or to their behavioral health counselor, or to a healthcare navigator for benefits questions.

How does the app help you provide continuous care to patients?

Care is available through our app 24/7, so patients can reach out anytime, whether it's nine o'clock at night or three o'clock in the morning. We're always available and they can always get in touch with a provider. I think that's another thing that patients love about Eden. We're always there when you need us.

How does Eden make life easier for HR managers?

As people return to the office in the midst of COVID-19, we take the burden off of HR with our Active Daily Monitoring. Their employees answer COVID screeners on the app every day to ensure it’s safe for them to return. If they answer with an abnormal complaint, I’m able to see them that day for a video visit and make the appropriate recommendations. HR is able to check on everyone’s daily status from a single online dashboard.

What do you like most about delivering care through Eden?

Probably the interaction with patients, whether through chat or a video visit, or in person. I love the flexibility and that the patients can choose how they prefer to see us. Because they reach out more frequently, we connect with them more often and can better track their progress. This leads to optimal outcomes, so we can create healthier workplaces – which is what it's all about.

 

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