During a pandemic, patients are understandably scared. Conflicting news reports and differing opinions from federal and state officials makes this a stressful and confusing time. To help them navigate this new way of life, patients are turning to their doctors for the appropriate education and insights. It’s essential that you have a way to stay connected to your patients during the pandemic (and beyond). Leveraging patient engagement tools is a fast and efficient way to stay connected.
Broadcast Communications Keep Your Patients Informed
The first step in connecting with your patients is letting them know what is happening at your practice. Broadcast, or Mass, Communications are a great way to get a message delivered to all your patients at the same time. Your messages may be focused on new telehealth options available, new safety measures the practice is taking for office visits, how to connect with your office, or what they should do in an urgent situation. See below for an example of an email broadcast communication.
Broadcast messages allow you to get those communications out in a matter of minutes vs. the hours it would take to call each individual patient.
Broadcast messages can also be used strategically to target specific patient groups or demographics. For example, your practice is holding a flu clinic. You can use a broadcast message to target patients that have not received a flu shot encouraging them to come in for the clinic.
Broadcast messages can also be used for emergency situations. As the COVID pandemic ramped up, many of our customers turned to broadcast messaging to inform their patients of the practice’s response efforts. Beyond the pandemic, emergency broadcast messaging can be used to notify patients of office closures due to natural disaster, electrical outages, and many other emergent situations.
Appointment Reminders Provide a Friendly Assist
Using appointment reminders is a fantastic way to give patients the push they need to keep their appointment. Reminder notifications can be delivered via email, text, or phone allowing your patients to confirm, cancel or, call your practice if there is a concern. You can use the reminders for office or virtual visits allowing you to incorporate telehealth quickly and easily into your patient reminder workflow.
According to Updox, and eMDs partner, the average practice loses up to $42,000 per year due to patient no-shows. By leveraging patient reminders, you can help reduce your no-show rate by up to 30% making sure you keep that important revenue stream. If a patient should cancel, you have that advanced notice allowing your staff time to backfill the appointment with another patient.
Templating allows you to quickly customize your messages to your different patient visit types. You can leverage one of the many built in templates offered by the reminder tool or create custom messages unique to your practice. This can also include instructions for the appointment which is particularly important during the pandemic.
Endless Benefits for Your Practice
According to a 2019 study by the MGMA, healthcare providers that use automated appointment reminders are seeing significant returns on their investment including:
- Higher revenue
- Lower no-show rate
- Better patient compliance
- Better appointment utilization
- Fewer unfilled appointments
- The ability to see more patients
- More time for staff
For more information and insights on engaging your patients, visit our Reopening Healthcare – Together resource center and watch our partner videos for tips and tricks on patient engagement strategies.