Sponsored by Computrition
While procurement, preparation, and distribution are critical parts of the foodservice supply chain, the meal ordering process cannot be overlooked. By integrating hospital meal ordering software, foodservice operators can achieve numerous operational efficiencies and improve the overall dining experience with a greater level of customer care.
Patients may not have control over much during their hospital stay, but their dining experience is an area that can provide opportunities to redeem some autonomy. While self-ordering technology offers patients the flexibility to initiate meal requests, it is done within safe parameters through an integrated patient menu ordering software. Menus are safely tailored based on each person’s particular diet order, only displaying appropriate food items. Interactive features, such as icons designating specific recipes and allergens, along with nutrient limit alerts, help reinforce healthy diet management. At UCSF Medical Center, menu items can be translated into Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, and Russian based on the patient’s preferred communication language from their electronic health record. Patient self-ordering also serves as an additional measure of protection during times of increased public health concern, like a pandemic, when contact-free meal selections help reduce patient-to-staff exposure.
Hospital room service is another useful way of limiting contact while liberating the patient to order what they want to eat when they want to eat. Health systems can effectively manage meals for multiple sites through a centralized call center system. Staff can process orders from any patient, at any hospital location, within designated meal service hours. Not only does on-demand ordering alleviate the task of having to make rounds to every room, but also significantly diminishes hospital food waste. Even visiting guests benefit from this option. HCA West Florida Division manages a standardized guest tray program using a point-of-sale system that enables patient’s guests to simply pick up the phone, order their guest tray, pay the call center, and receive their custom meal – just like at a hotel.
Online retail ordering
Ensuring the satisfaction of frontline healthcare heroes is just as important as meeting the patient’s needs. When hospital foodservice operators reconfigure their retail service venues to meet shifting consumer trends, they encounter a growing preference for contactless retail ordering options. Consequently, there is a unique service opportunity to enhance the point-of-sale experience using a cashless retail system that can process contactless transactions. With online meal ordering, retailers can optimize throughput by decreasing checkout line crowding, which naturally occurs during peak mealtimes. Providing this alternative allows retailers to encourage essential employees to dine on-site rather than go off-campus, thereby boosting retail profits.
To learn more about hospital meal ordering software in healthcare, visit Computrition.