Five tasks you can automate to improve efficiency in your practice
Efficiency and automation may be business buzzwords, but they’re also vital for the smooth running of your medical practice. If your team is caught up with tedious administrative processes each day, then they’re spending less time on more valuable activities, such as nurturing patient relationships.
Put simply, a practice that is operating efficiently will treat more patients, offer a better patient experience and be more profitable. Building patient loyalty takes time. But if you’re able to invest more time in the patient experience because you’ve implemented automation effectively in your practice, then you’ve got a solid foundation to grow a happy and loyal patient base.
Patient expectations have also changed considerably in recent years. Patients expect to be able to book appointments online, see instant replies to queries, receive invoices and receipts on email, and get SMS appointment reminders. Utilising technology from reliable providers that easily integrates into your clinical software, is central to providing these functionalities.
If you don’t already have one, consider including an online booking service form on your website. Research shows that 90% of people prefer to book appointments online, with over half of all online bookings made after business hours.
By giving your patients an intuitive platform for making and managing their appointments, you’re not only providing them with convenience, you’re also reducing the number of phone calls to your busy reception team.
These days, online booking functionality is highly customisable to cater to each practice. HotDoc gives you the flexibility to either customise or standardise your appointment types and run times for each practitioner, and will also automatically prompt patients to reschedule an appointment if they cancel.
New patient registration
While patients are used to filling out paperwork when they arrive for their first appointment, it can take up a lot of time. And for practice staff, manually transcribing handwriting can be prone to error.
AutoMed’s Digital Forms service helps you capture and save patient information ahead of time with their digital new patient registration forms and consent forms, as well as allowing you to update existing patient information quickly. You can choose to have a patient complete the required form digitally after booking their first online appointment, or via an automatic SMS once their record has been created.
Practices now have the ability to provide a self-service system in the waiting room to allow patients to check themselves in for their appointments quickly and easily.
AutoMed’s kiosk checks in each patient on the spot while still meeting the required regulatory checks and privacy standards. It can also cater to walk-in appointments by intelligently managing appointment and waiting room allocations based on practitioner efficiency.
Services like MyHealth1st’s EasyCheck-ins, enables self-check-ins using the patient’s own mobile phone and a QR code or SMS link. This helps to reduce front desk congestion and allows your team to focus on patients who might need more face-to-face assistance.
Reminders and results
Appointment reminders are vital to reducing late arrivals and no-shows and these can be automated to save you time contacting each patient manually.
HotDoc provides an automated service that enables you to send SMS health reminders and results messages to patients while meeting full RACGP accreditation standards. Other platforms such as MessageNet help you create, send and track SMS messaging easily – whether you’re sending one SMS or broadcasting to thousands.
Reviews and feedback
Customer reviews are a great way for your practice to build trust with potential patients, with 61% of Australians checking a practice’s Google reviews before booking an appointment. And by asking for patient feedback regularly, you’re also gaining valuable insights into what’s working well, and what can be improved.
HotDoc can help you automate review requests by sending an automated SMS to patients after their appointment encouraging them to leave a Google review. By encouraging more reviews, you’re more likely to attract new patients, as well as giving your team a morale boost when they see their hard work recognised.
Keen to see what else you can automate in your practice? MedicalDirector’s Marketplace lists technology partners who can provide innovative ways to tailor your clinical software. Each Marketplace partner offers the highest standard in service and reliability with the end-goal of improving practice efficiency and innovation.