The Pandemic’s Effect on Medical Call Centers
Staffing and managing medical call centers has always been challenging, but the pandemic has made it considerably more complex. Brian Briggs, Stericycle’s Vice President of Call Center Operations, was recently featured in a CMSWire article titled “Call Center Leadership: Looking to the New Year”, to talk about some of the obstacles faced by healthcare providers.
Industry leaders joined Brian in a discussion about the challenges highlighted in a CGS Customer Experience Poll. They identified main hurdles for medical call center leaders such as increased call volumes, achieving operational efficiencies, and staffing difficulties.
Many healthcare organizations don’t realize one of the easiest ways to solve their biggest challenges is to outsource specific call types to a trusted partner. This allows their agents to take the calls that they do best and to outsource more challenging calls to a medical call center service.
Stericycle’s Medical Call Center Solutions
At Stericycle Communication Solutions we partner with our healthcare clients to create call center solutions that address specific needs and provide a real impact. Health systems come to us when they do not have their own call centers, their existing call centers can no longer handle call volumes, they are not hitting service levels, they cannot maintain appropriate staffing levels, or when they are going through a huge transition like moving to a new EHR or call center solution.
This can encompass handling inbound calls, outbound calls, or internal calls. Our proven team can handle any type of call and improve the patient experience while relieving staff and creating efficiencies.
Additionally, as experts in call center operations, we have highly trained multilingual agents, internal EHR-specific training capabilities, work from home models, staffing capabilities, all with decades of experience. Our agents can log call outcomes within a health system’s CRM and EHR becoming a true extension of their team. We can support healthcare call centers in almost every way imaginable.
What Type of Medical Calls Can Stericycle Answer?
Below are some call types we handle that help clients improve their medical call center operational efficiencies, address staffing issues, and manage increased call volumes:
External Call Types
Appointment prep instructions, including telehealth assistance
Data migration during EHR transitions
Patient portal support
Marketing campaigns, such as new movers or service line campaigns
Primary care physician recapture
Health risk assessment support
Employee wellness check, including a way to address clinical burnout and nursing shortages
Post-employment follow-up survey
In the CMSWire.com article, Briggs, said his “key focus in 2022 is on agent enablement because he believes agents’ experience dictates consumer experience.”
In “Call Center Leadership: Looking to the New Year,” he shared our agent enablement roadmap which includes:
Entity extraction which captures consumer statements during the call to automatically populate data on the agent desktop needed to accomplish a task, such as scheduling a medical appointment.
Cognitive search which will empower our agents with relevant information as the consumer asks questions.
Real-time service recovery with sentiment analysis
"We believe our agent enablement program will help make our call center be more efficient, make healthcare brands more competitive, and ultimately elevate the patient experience"
— Brian Briggs, Vice President of Call Center Solutions, Stericycle
In addition to our expert healthcare call center solutions, we have a full patient engagement platform that allows us to couple technology with live voice solutions. In fact, we recently won the 2021 Customer Value Leadership Award North American Patient Engagement Industry award from Frost & Sullivan because of this unique capability.
"Stericycle Communication Solutions recognizes the role both humans and information technology (IT) systems play in patient engagement, developing live voice and digital solutions to meet customer needs and market trends"
— Frost & Sullivan