Archive for April, 2010

Free Appointment Service?

April 28th, 2010

If you are considering using an online scheduler you have probably seen the services that claim they are free.

Think carefully before you use a service that says they are free.  While it is true that a new service might offer free service for a test period to attract customers there are very few things in life that are free.

Don’t you wonder how they are paying their bills if their service is free?  One distinct possibility is that they are trolling for names to add to their mail lists.

These mail lists would then be sold or rented to other people.  While you may be okay with getting a lot of spam and junk mail because you are getting a free service, what are your patients going to think when they realize that using your online service means that they are going to get tons of junk mail?

But even worse is the fact that if a free service sells the information that they gather they are getting a whole lot more than just the e-mail address.  They are getting home, cell and work numbers, home addresses and numbers to which they can send text messages.

Worst of all,  what if they take any information that explains the reason that the patient is scheduling the appointment.  You might actually be in violation of your HIPAA responsibilities.

Even though most countries ban the selling or renting of e-mails without permission a company can bury that permission so deeply and vaguely in their terms of service that you won’t know about it till you start getting calls from angry patients.

Is saving a few bucks a month really worth the cost of loosing patients?  Make sure that any service you use clearly states that they will never rent or use the information that they are storing for you.  If it doesn’t state that clearly, why would you ever want to risk doing business with them?

Best Medical Management is Possible with Patient Appointment Scheduler

April 25th, 2010

It is not a secret anymore that if you want your medical business to boom, you work to achieve high customers’ satisfaction. Since customers, here, are the patients, healthcare providers have to be careful treating them and also maintaining a doctor-patient relationship. Online patient appointment scheduler is the best tool available on the market that helps managing the health care center without any hassles.

There’s nothing to prove that humans are prone to make errors. Using online patient medical management software, the erroneous events in arranging patients’ appointments at health care center can be kept at bay. More and more health care providers now opt for online appointment schedule system as it reduces the paperwork and provides patient reminder services as an additional feature.

The patient reminder service makes calls to patients and informs them about their forthcoming visits to the clinic. Also, a doctor can tailor patient reminder service according to his/her expertise. Specially designed patient appointment scheduler is also powered by the feature wherein the doctor can switch it to medical answering system that picks up patients’ calls and answers them without presenting ‘busy’ tone.

Online patient appointment scheduler is an online system that fixes patients’ appointment without any overlapping in time. Also, it synchronizes appointments with Google Calendar that can be accessible on handheld devices such as Blackberry, Smartphone and iPhone. The healthcare provider can alter, change or reschedule the appointments according to his/her routine.

Online appointment scheduler can also be used as prepaid appointment scheduler wherein patients can pay consultation fees in advance. Such feature can reduce the chances of ‘no-show’ patients, which is one of the biggest causes for revenue loss.

Patient reminder system that can work as medical answering system that provides 24/7 service and in this way, the health care center is accessible all day potentially increasing the number of patients.

Standardize Your Healthcare Center using Web Appointment Scheduler

April 25th, 2010

If you think of an automation of your medical office, you have to be careful before getting any of such system available on the market. Let us look at some important features that online patient appointment scheduler should have:-

  1. The most important thing you need in medical software is it should be HIPAA compliant that assures the security of patients’ information.
  2. Medical management system must have unique features that enables the system to work on multiple tasks such as it can be used as medical answering system and can also be switched on to patient reminder system as and when required.
  3. The system of medical answering should also have features such as setting for multilingual options wherein patients can interact in their own languages such as French, Chinese, and Spanish etc. Furthermore, the system can be tailored according to doctor’s expertise.
  4. Online appointment scheduler should be accessible anywhere, anytime. For this, the feature of Google Calendar Synchronization is very useful. It sets up patients’ appointments with calendar and sends it across handheld devices such as Blackberry, Smartphone and Iphone. A two-way synchronization enables the health care provider to reschedule or alter appointments.

The best feature of online appointment scheduler is prepaid appointment scheduling. The major factor that contributes to medical center’s revenue loss is a ‘no-show’ patient. The patients do not appear for the appointment provided on phone and that makes the clinic to suffer. Prepaid patient appointment scheduler is system by which the patients are to pay for the consultation, in advance. This ensures patients’ presence at the time allotted and lessens the chances of revenue loss.

Medical answering service can be used where high call volum from patients are expected. An event such as free medical camp requires robust system that can tackle many calls at a time, which is quite a difficult task for medical front office executives. Medical answering service can answer calls at a time without getting the caller a busy tone. This way, the accessibility of health care center is increased and expected footfalls to the center increase.

How “Free” Are Free Online Schedulers?

April 21st, 2010

If you have been looking for online schedulers for your business, there are chances that you have come across web sites that claim to offer free online schedulers. This can be a very tempting route to take for your appointment scheduling needs. However, there are some factors you need to bear in mind before you opt for such a service.

The issue of free online schedulers is sensitive in any line of business you may be involved in, but it is even more serious as far as medical practice is concerned.

Making online schedules is quite involving. So, why would someone be willing to offer you the service free of charge? The companies give a variety of reasons for doing this, but they tend to boil down to the same thing: that they have other great ways of making money.

What is true is that they must have ways of making money. However, they are not really making the money from other sources as they would like you to believe. If the services were free as they claim, why would they go to great lengths to reach you in the first place? This in itself should tell you that the service is not as free as it is claimed. The plain fact is that the companies need people to sign up for their apparently free services for them to make money. But do you know that the way they make the money could easily land you into a lot of trouble?

Consider this:

When you sign up for the “free” online schedulers, not only will your own data but also the details of your patients go to the company’s servers. How safe can you ensure that this data is? As a doctor, you know that you are sworn to privacy as far as some of your patients’ details are concerned. Yet here you will be putting yourself in a situation where you have absolutely no control over this data.

Do you know how the apparently free services generate income? They SELL this data. The money that they get from your data is far more than what you would pay for a good online appointment scheduler. And you do not really know where your sensitive pieces of information could end up.

You can easily be charged for the violation of your patient’s privacy, and what you will be required to pay cannot be compared to the amount with which you could have subscribed to a good online scheduler. And you can be held in violation of HIPAA.

Even if your business does not grind to a halt, you will have a very bad reputation. Free online schedulers are actually too costly to risk taking.

Online Patient Scheduler: A Remote Access to Your Health Center

April 18th, 2010

Do you travel frequently? Do you want to manage patient schedules without any hassles? Do you want to access your health center sitting anywhere in city or state? If these problems annoy you, you should probably have online patient scheduler, a tailored software system that manages your clinic when the human staff is not so capable or reliable.

You usually do not have computer with Internet connection when you are away from your health center, Neither can you drive with medical front office executive the way you want. Of course, there are some hotspots where you can simply plug on your notebook, but it is unrelaistic to carrying these devices and open your notenook anywhere, anytime when patient calls.

All thanks to medical software technology that enables you not only to alter or reschedule online patient appointments but can also work on multiple tasks that your center always required.

Online patient scheduler is a system that takes and fixes up patient appointments without any human interference. Furthermore, the system synchronizes appointments with Google Calendar and sends it to Microsoft Outlook and handheld devices such as iPhone, Blackberry and Smartphone. You can simply view the appointments and reschedule it according to your plan. The system can also be tuned into prepaid online appointment scheduler that patients can use by paying consultation fees in advance. This tackles an issue of no-show patient, one of the most bothering things that contribute to loss of revenue.

Medical professionals can tailor online appointment scheduler according to their expertise and can also use them as medical virtual receptionist. The system comes with feature of multilingual option setting which, patients speaking French, English, and Spanish etc can communicate in a better way. A virtual receptionist is very useful when medical center is expected to have flood of calls from patients during event such as free medical camp.

The virtual receptionist can make automated patient reminder for you, The software can call patients and inform them about their forthcoming visits to medical center and can also be used to advise patients about their regimen and diet as prescribed by the doctor.

Due to its multiple uses, the all-in-one online medical appointment scheduler, virtual receprionist has become more and more popular. This is looked as one of the most efficient tools in managing medical office smoothly.

Carry and Manage Patient Schedule in Your Handheld Devices

April 18th, 2010

If you own a medical practice and are frequently on the run, away from your office, you could either miss your patients calls for appointment (i.e. if you do not have a receptionist) or getting patients appointments set on the wrong time for you. Many medical practitioner today are looking for a online appointment scheduler that can accomodate their mobility, something that allows them to manage their appointment without being at front desk or having to “remote-control”  their front desk receptionist.

Online patient appointment scheduler with an additional feature of synchronization enables you to access schedule on your handheld device. This is because web based appointment scheduler can directly fit appointments into Google Calendar that is accessible using iPhone, Smartphone and Blackberry from anywhere. The system would display appointments whenever you want to view, alter or reschedule.

Google calendar Services includes… 

  • Regular scheduled events
  • Public and shared Google calendar
  • Audible alert reminder
  • Tasks from MS Outlook
  • Notifications and event particulars
  • Various calendars

A two-way online appointment scheduler allows you to manage patients’ appointments especially when your plan has changed and your availability at health care center has to be notified. Furthermore, you can also set a timer so that the calendar would synchronize with handheld devices.

Specially designed patient online appointment scheduler allows user to view a complete list of compatible devices while signing up. Various software applications are also available to upgrade the number of personal information management software and also applications on desktop that the user want to synchronize.

The use of web based patient appointment scheduler has become a hot-cake as it not only smoothens managing patients’ appointments but can also be used as medical answering system and patient reminder wherein the system automatically answers calls and makes calls to patients informing about their forthcoming visits to clinic. Online appointment scheduler can also be tailored according to physician’s expertise and can be used as prepaid scheduler where patients can pay for the consultation in advance before appearing to clinic. No-show patients can easily taken care by prepaid scheduler preventing revenue loss.

Whether you travel frequently or you run short of the manpower, online appointment scheduler is the best tool available on the market to run your clinic errorless and smoothly.

How to Avoid Patient No-Shows

April 13th, 2010

According to a survey presented at a conference that was organized by the Royal College of Surgeons, as much as 15% of patients who make appointments do not show up for their appointments. 76% of these patients do not even let their doctors know that they would not go for the scheduled appointments. 15% of them said that they forgot about their appointments while 26% said that they got no notification. From this study, you can see the importance of patient appointment reminder service.

Making appointments is certainly very important. However, if you leave it at that, you will still be losing out. You need an effective way of keeping in touch with the patients to ensure that they do not forget to come for the scheduled appointments.

You have already set up an appointment scheduler. Why should you spend on a patient appointment reminder service? Look at it this way. How many patients fail to show up to your medical practice each month? If 15% of patients do not show up because you do not remind them, how much will you be losing? Yet if you save just one patient no-show within a month, you will have paid for the reminder service.

Now that you have seen the importance of a patient appointment reminder program, what should you look for to ensure that you get the best service?

Avoid large up-front costs:

Just because you have read a good review about a given service should not make you commit to a program that requires a large upfront payment that will tie you up for a long time. You should preferably look for an appointment reminder service that you pay for on a monthly basis.

Different ways of contacting patients:

People have different interests and lead different lifestyles. This means that relying on a service that uses just one method of contacting the patients will not serve you well. Here are some of the ways through which you should be able to contact your patients.

Telephone

Very many people use telephone, both young and old. However, you will miss the patients who are not at home during the call and do not have an answering system.

Email

The advancement in Information Technology has made the use of email very popular nowadays. Email offers a fast way of getting in touch with people easily.

However, if your patient reminder service uses email only, you will not cater for those who who do use email, particularly the elderly. In addition, increasing misuse of email has has made email programs enhance their spam filters, and your reminders may not reach the patients at times.

Text message reminder

Text message gives a convenient way of keeping in touch with the patients wherever they may be. The greatest drawback, however, is the fact that the patients will pay for the text messages.

The automated patient reminder service you use should use a combination of all these methods.

Automating Health Center? Try Online Appointment Scheduler

April 11th, 2010

If you are looking for the best automated system for your clinic or hospital, you should bank on the software that can work efficiently on multiple tasks such as online patient appointment scheduling, patient reminder, medical answering etc. It is a high time that your health center requires a tool using cutting edge technology and at the same time, the system can be tailored as per your need.

An all-in-one online appointment scheduler typically behaves as medical virtual assistant that offers several services such as fixing up the appointments asked by patients, reminding them about their forthcoming visits to the medical center or calls them instructing regimens suggested by doctor etc. Also, it should answer the calls made by patients for queries or advice.

Specially designed online appointment scheduler comes with great features such as it synchronizes schedules with Google Calendar and sends you on your handheld devices such as iPhone, Smartphone and Blackberry. You can alter, postpone or reschedule such appointments –no matter where are you sitting. This is very useful feature for the health care providers, surgeons, physicians and other specialists who travel out of their centers frequently.

Another benefit that comes with online appointment scheduler is it can be used as prepaid appointment scheduler where patients pay in advance for your consultancy. This tackles no-show patient issue, which is known reason for revenue loss.

When the center is expected to flood with patients’ calls, online appointment scheduler can be tailored to virtual medical front desk that answers the calls according to your need. Doctors can feed the system according to their expertise. Also, the system comes with multilingual option (such as English, French, etc) for a better conversation with foreign patients.

The system can also make calls to patients reminding them about appointments and other schedules at health care center. This, again, is to assure their visit to clinic or hospital and increase the potential.

A fully computerized automated medical office can not only save your time and money but can also help you in generating good revenue and managing the clinic without any hassles.

 

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