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Telehealth Provider Receives a Prescription for Call Center Relief

KP OnCall, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kaiser Permanente, provides 24/7 integrated programs in remote care management (or 'telehealth') to providers, payers, and employers.


The Affordable Care Act means that hospitals have more insured patients, but staff levels have not increased proportionally, so healthcare providers have to do more with less. Kaiser was looking for a way to increase the efficiency of its nurse practitioners and determined that they need to increase the number of phone interviews that each nurse can conduct, but without any reduction in the quality of care.

Nurse practitioners and physician assistants were already taking phone calls from patients for some symptoms, but each phone call took about 20-25 minutes. And the number of patients needing consultation was increasing. kaiser needed a way to make the process more efficient.

The Web Self Service & Nurse Chat is a solution that empowers members with the option to complete an online self-assessment versus waiting to speak to a nurse on the phone or go in for an appointment.

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Kaiser Permanente is aware that for many patients an office visit can be more than a minor inconvenience; it may require taking time off work, or making complicated or expensive travel arrangements. And a doctor's office never feels as comfortable or private as one's own home. When it's difficult for a patient to make or keep appointments, the provider suffers as well. Kaiser's KP OnCall provides members a service and opportunity to speak to a nurse practitioner over the phone, without having to visit an office.

Kaiser called on Big Data Hush to assist, due in part to:

  • Our cloud enablement strategy and delivery teams

  • Experience delivering solutions for healthcare organizations and understanding the organizational and market challenges they face

  • Our methodology and experience in customer experience to help engage customers and strengthen relationships

  • More than 15 years of experience working with Oracle customers to successfully implement solutions

Big Data Hush created the Web Self Service & Nurse Chat, a solution that empowers members with the option to complete an online self-assessment versus waiting to speak to a nurse on the phone or go in for an appointment.

We deployed Oracle Policy Automation (OPA) to handle patient interviews and create an Oracle Service Cloud incident that is sent to the nurse practitioner if the patient can be treated via the online interview. Otherwise the patient is instructed on homecare or to make an appointment or visit an urgent care, as the case warrants.

With the Web Self Service & Nurse Chat, certain medical conditions can be screened via web questionnaires rather than requiring the patient to speak to a nurse. Members can complete questionnaires at their own convenience and receive treatment recommendations and patient education.

The Oracle Service Cloud platform allows:

  • Self-service questionnaire or nurse chat

  • Easy supervisor interface and robust data collection

  • Ability to add other medical condition or symptom questionnaires

  • Integration with website

Healthy Patients. Happy Client.

  • Online cases can be processed more quickly than those conducted via telephone

  • Patients appreciated the convenience and privacy of an online form that they can fill out in private rather than discussing symptoms over the phone or in an office environment. More than 90% of the patients said they liked the online form and would be happy to use it again. They also liked the automated responses over email

  • The first protocol implemented was urinary tract infections. Automating just this one protocol alone saves more than half a million dollars per year for Kaiser

  • In the first year alone, 82% of users described Web Self Service & Nurse Chat as "very easy to use," and 63% of users stated that they prefer using the online questionnaire to having to speak with a nurse on the phone

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