3 Benefits of Appointment Reminders

July 31, 2018 | Stericycle Communication Solutions

The world is more digitally-inclined than ever. With Americans checking their phones 80 times a day, it should come as no surprise that patients who receive timely messages and reminders are more likely to attend their upcoming appointments. If your organization is reaching out to patients via mail or email, requiring patients to schedule appointments in-office or over the phone, or your staff is only reachable during office hours, your healthcare organization isn't operating as efficiently as it could. An external communication partner can help your organization achieve efficient, quality service by creating smoother patient experiences and enabling your focus to be on providing excellent care to patients. Here's how.

  1. Sending Personalized, Automated Messages. From appointment reminders to billing notices to preventative care messages, automated messaging significantly reduces no-show rates while protecting revenue. Oftentimes, messages are sent by staff members, which distracts them from focusing on other responsibilities. Automated messaging eliminates the need for your in-house staff to manually reach out to every patient individually. Important messages are sent quickly, allowing patients to prepare for their appointments. Aligning your organization with the right communication partner can ensure your patient satisfaction scores improve significantly.
  2. Allowing Patients Online Scheduling Options. In this digitally-inclined era, allowing patients to schedule appointments online is not only beneficial to them, but also to your organization. Online scheduling reduces the number of calls your staff must answer, allowing excellent care to be provided to patients, schedule-fill rates to be optimized, and patients to schedule appointments when they're able. While integrating with your organization's website, the right kind of online scheduling system can drive patient volume and create real-time, two-way communication between your organization and its patients, all while steadily increasing patient acquisition and retention.
  3. Letting Patients Call When Convenient. Answering services have similar benefits. They allow healthcare organizations to maximize staff and operational efficiencies, while knowing each of their calls is being answered in a HIPAA-compliant manner that enhances their overall patient experience. If the right answering service is used, it will be highly-flexible and ensure patient calls are always promptly answered in a professional way that is both consistent and efficient. While acting as a seamless extension of your organization, an answering service that is fully-equipped in basic medical terminology can help operational efficiencies skyrocket.

Creating a more efficient healthcare organization is not out of reach. According to a CNN article, "the idea of tailoring regular electronic communications to patients counts as an innovation in healthcare with potential to save money and improve quality." With the help of each mentioned solution, your organization can acquire more new patients and improve its service. What's more, you can better generate patient loyalty – securing lifelong patients for your practice or hospital. Our Healthcare Services Overview can provide more insight.

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