The increasing trend towards consumerism in healthcare is leading patients to require a higher level of service from their providers. They expect those same “buyer conveniences” they get with other businesses - such as text updates, online access, scheduling options, ability to email instead of call. Yet providers often have little time to focus on improving the patient experience as they are busy taking care of patients.
To remain competitive in the future, many providers wonder how to address these new challenges while balancing their existing workloads. Mobile and online solutions that provide patient data and reminders, for example, are one answer to this challenge.
With Updox, independent practices and pharmacies can offer expanded features that make their patients’ lives easier – all within one easy-to-use platform, instead of many complicated and expensive solutions from multiple technology vendors that require staff to log in and out of different applications.
Read on for three steps you can start today to improve patient engagement - with the additional benefits of also easing staff morale and generating business revenue:
Text Your Patients
SMS offers an open rate among the highest of any platform in the world. In fact, 97 percent of Americans use text messaging and 90 percent of users will read messages within three minutes of receipt. With Updox’s Secure Text, healthcare providers can improve their patient engagement efforts by reaching patients wherever they are. In addition, Secure Text can help reduce time spent on repetitive phone calls and give your practice an easier, more effective option to reach patients. Patients can respond to the text (for two-way messaging capabilities) and the solution is HIPAA-compliant.
Implement Automated Appointment Reminders
Modern Healthcare reports that 23 percent of patients who fail to show up for their appointments say it was because they forget it was scheduled, costing the average practice around $2,000 per week (that’s $104K a year!). Have you calculated your no-show rates and how much money you are losing due to those unfilled (and unbilled) appointments? Automated appointment reminders serve as a notice for patients and allow providers to fill slots if they can no longer make their appointment. In addition, this streamlines workflows for providers, as they no longer will be required to spend hours on end calling patients (with those calls going straight to voicemail) to remind them of appointments.
Set up Online Payments
Nine out of ten patients report that they want to pay their bills online because it allows them to view their statements—making them feel like they are in control. Online payments minimize the potential revenue impact and improve the payment experience for patients and practices alike. Providing customers with the convenience of online bill pay leads to practices being paid in full and on time - eliminating collections costs.
Patient engagement lets you meet patients where they are - through the communications channels they use most and prefer. Imagine no more voicemail messages! By using proven patient engagement tools and services, practices and pharmacies can improve patient care, increase patient retention, reduce staff time spent on administrative work and collect more revenue.
For more ways to implement solutions that better engage patients throughout the care continuum, download Updox’s white paper, “Five Steps to Improving Patient Engagement.”