RTLS Eases the Stress of Treatment for Oncology Patients. Here’s How.

Jeanne Kraimer


January 25, 2019


Oncology patients feel a great deal of stress and anxiety. Visits to the cancer center are often lengthy and very involved, with multiple appointments and several specialists. This complexity is a lot to juggle while experiencing the full spectrum of emotions that come along with seeking treatment for a life-threatening disease. Patients expect caregivers to be timely, present and fully focused on providing care; when their expectations aren’t met, it adds to their stress and frustration. 

Fortunately, there’s a way to ease the stress of treatment—both for oncology patients and their caregivers. Implementing a real-time locating system (RTLS) creates care efficiencies and keeps patient visits moving smoothly. Here are three ways that RTLS specifically impacts the oncology patient experience. 

1. Reduce Wait Times

Lengthy wait times are directly tied to patient dissatisfaction, and time is particularly important to cancer patients. They don’t want to spend it waiting to see their physician, waiting for lab results or waiting for chemotherapy meds to be mixed. 

RTLS monitors each patient’s wait and alone times at each stage of their visit and communicates them via software. If a patient’s wait or alone time exceeds a pre-established benchmark, staff are notified by pop-up alerts so they can attend to the patient and keep their appointment moving. This results in a shorter overall length of stay and increased patient satisfaction.

2. Keep Visits Moving Smoothly

In the same vein, RTLS helps caregivers provide more organized, professional care to patients. By glancing at the software (displayed on workstations and large screen monitors), staff and providers can answer the following questions: 

  • Which rooms or infusion chairs are available? 
  • Where is the patient, and how long has he/she been waiting or in treatment? 
  • Who has already seen the patient and who has not seen them yet? 

Every data point provided by RTLS empowers caregivers to keep patient appointments moving efficiently, which optimizes workflow and results in an improved patient experience. 

3. Make It Easy to Find Family Members 

Being aware of who the patient’s family is, and where they are, is important in oncology care, especially pediatric oncology. Because visits are lengthy, family members may step out for a bathroom break or a cup of coffee. 

RTLS provides peace of mind to the patient because it allows staff to find family when they’re needed. By giving RTLS badges to the patient’s family and associating the badges with the patient, staff and providers can know at a glance where in the clinic family members are located. Searching for the patient’s family is no longer necessary, which saves time for both the patient and staff. 

Want to learn more? 

Stay tuned for our forthcoming eBook, “7 Benefits of RTLS for Cancer Care,” for more insights on how Midmark RTLS transforms the oncology care experience.