Archive for July, 2011

Online Appointment Scheduling – Helping Doctors To Achieve The Balance

July 29th, 2011

Dealing with patient appointment scheduling can take up a large percentage of your staff’s day. Providing online appointment scheduling for patients has helped many large and small health organizations balance out workflows and invariably improve overall medical practice management: A sound solution which allows doctors to meet the needs and demands of their patients cost effectively.  In an ever competitive world it is essential to balance costs and services efficiently.

Web-based online appointment scheduling systems can help doctors to achieve that balance by streamlining the patient appointment process: Freeing up front desk staff without reducing services. In fact, an online appointment scheduling system can actually expand services. Patients are able to make a doctor appointment 24/7: Patient appointment reminder calls as well as SMS and emails can be sent routinely, on time every time – Missed appointments cost money. An online appointment scheduling system can help to reduce no-shows by ensuring patient appointment reminder calls are made: No matter how busy the front desk is.

Keeping Up

In a modern world organization is paramount. People are busy! They want to be able to make their doctor appointment without hassle: Quickly and without any slip-ups. The old fashioned appointment diary is far more prone to mistakes than an automated online scheduler. Cancellations and rescheduled appointments can be enough to throw paper based systems into chaos. When mistakes are made patients can be left waiting for longer than most would consider reasonable. However, an automated system can keep up with demand more effectively. Primarily because automated appointment scheduling systems do not become stressed and can multi-task way beyond human capacity. It really is as simple as that….

Delivering The Services Your Patients Need

Web based online appointment scheduling systems can be used to enhance the services provided to patients. They can be utilized 24/7 online as well as at the front desk: Or, they can deal with patient appointment calls during busy periods – Some can also deal with emergency calls. Automated systems do need to take ‘time out’: They do not need coffee breaks or holidays!  Automated online systems are available 24/7 at a comparatively cost-effective price: Far less than it would cost to employ permanent staff to deal with calls. In this way doctors are able to offer the services their patients need cost-effectively. And unquestionably, achieving this balance can make all the difference. So if you want to make a difference try online appointment scheduling. It has worked well for some of the largest health organizations in the USA and Canada. Chances are it can work for you too…

Decreasing No-shows – Doctor Appointment Scheduling Software

July 23rd, 2011

Regardless of whether an organisation is large or small, the problem of reducing no-shows remains the same: If they fail to reduce them, time as well as revenue is lost. Today with the advancements made in doctor appointment scheduling software and systems the percentage of no-shows can be reduced more easily – Through automation.

The stats and research indicate that automated doctor appointment reminder calls can have a positive affect upon no-show percentages. Today patient appointment software and web based systems are being utilised by large and small health organisations throughout he US and Canada – For exactly this reason: They work!

Improving Services

Both staff and doctors can access these systems: Utilizing them to schedule patient appointments as well as deal with reminder calls and even emergency calls – Depending upon how advanced the system is. Some web–based systems also allow patients to go online and schedule a doctor appointment 24/7: A notable plus for many people with busy lives and schedules. After all, nowadays more and more people are using the internet to buy products and services – Giving them the opportunity to make their doctor appointment online therefore makes a lot of sense. Plus, online 24/7 appointment scheduling helps to take the heat of the front desk. A positive step by all accounts. The more time staff has to deal with more pressing tasks the better overall medical practice management and so patient services will invariably be.

Automated Reminder Calls

Automated systems can make patient reminder calls at a designated time: On time every time. More advanced systems are multi-lingual and can make hundreds of calls in a short space of time. A feat hard to match by anything other than a machine! Patients have the option to confirm, reschedule and cancel their doctor appointment with ease. In some instances a SMS text and/or email reminder can also be sent.

The stats have shown that automated patient appointment reminder calls can notably reduce no-shows. Less missed appointments means less missed revenue and wasted time. In this way an automated system can be very cost-effective. Easy to utilise and financially viable: No wonder so many of the largest health organisations are getting automated. So, question is, why aren’t you?

Patient Appointment Scheduling – Time Keeping Isn’t Just A “Patient Thing”

July 16th, 2011

Good time keeping and scheduling isn’t just about patients arriving for their doctor appointment on time: Or indeed entirely about them actually arriving at all. It is also down to good time-management of the doctor and his staff: In short good medical practice management which relies much upon efficient patient appointment scheduling. For most people having a “good” doctor is not just about having a competent physician able to deal with their medical needs in a professional manner: It is also about the doctor being available for that patient within acceptable time frames. This might well include emergency care also. And why shouldn’t they expect this? It is no more than anyone deserves per se.

Online patient appointment scheduling systems rarely need any in-house installations of specialist hardware; nor do they require maintenance. Pen and paper scheduling is comparatively messy and unreliable: Rescheduling appointments, squeezing the bookings etc can lead to mistakes which in turn will lead to disorganization and delays.

Improved Communication

Online and automated systems can actually improve communication. Patients are not left hanging on the end of a phone and invariably will have the option to make their doctor appointment online. Many advanced systems can also ensure than reminder calls are made: Even send reminders via SMS as well call and send emails. This keeps patients and doctors in touch 24/7 – This is ‘good’ communication. Reminder calls have proven to reduce no-shows and yet are rarely prioritized: If staff have time they are made: If the front desk is busy they are not. Of course patients should take priority. However, when an automated scheduling system can deal with them routinely and easily this somewhat haphazard ‘system’ is not a cost-effective way to deal with patient appointment reminder calls – Comparatively speaking.

Efficient and Cost Effective

If a medical practice has a inefficient appointment scheduling system this can affect the availability of the doctor – No-shows are lost appointments which means patients are left waiting for an appointment longer than they have to. In addition patients left in waiting for too long does little for patient-doctor relations. Nerves become frayed and this kind of inefficiency does little for confidence. Automated patient appointment scheduling systems are efficient and cost-effective: Helping doctors and patients achieve good time management and so deliver and receive a high standard of care – Hence so many of the major health organizations are taking them on board to keep standards high and costs low: Indeed, a very good thing….

Automated Appointment Scheduling vs. Paper and Pen

July 9th, 2011

The days of paper and pen appointment scheduling seem destined for deletion. Rescheduling and last minute changes can make appointment books look more like a war zone than the kind of neat order which ultimately ensures things run smoothly. In addition manual appointment scheduling that could be spent consumes time: A tiresome thorn in the side of cost effective time management of staff.

In short patient appointment scheduling is like a never ending headache: Nevertheless, it is a necessity regardless of how petty and tedious the process. How appointment scheduling is carried out affects both staff and patients. Staff forced to manually schedule appointments using outdated ways and means does little for employee job satisfaction. Pushed for time efficiency deteriorates, oversights and mistakes are made. As a result patients will undergo the negative effects of those mistakes which will invariably and ultimately mean everybody suffers: Not good for business.

We’re Only Human

Unhappy staff and patients can lead to lost revenue as well as deal a serious blow to reputation. The health sector has never been so competitive and so at a time when your medical practice should be looking for cost effective solutions it is actually incurring loss: Unnecessary loss. However, staff are only human and there are only so many hours in the day. An automated appointment scheduler however is not, and can work 24hrs a day, 365 days a year.

Avoid The Pitfalls

The option to schedule a patient appointment any time of day through an automated system can only be beneficial for everyone concerned. Overall medical practice management can be improved as staff are free to deal with more demanding tasks: Thus utilising their skills more fully. This means patients receive the care and attention they need: No hanging around on the end of a phone to make a patient appointment: Patients are not left waiting at the desk while staff deal with patient appointments on the phone: And never will they have to endure being left without an appointment when mistakes are made – All in all, neither patients nor staff will have to deal with all the pitfalls which dog manual appointment scheduling.

Choose To Be Competitive

Some of the largest medical establishments in the US and Canada have already moved over to automated appointment scheduling. Today more and more private practices are doing the same. This is because they are as reliable as they are cost effective and can help to improve the level of patient care delivered: And in a competitive world such as ours, this can be the difference between becoming a successful business or not: Its your choice.

Automated Appointment Scheduling – A Step In The Right Direction

July 3rd, 2011

Whether your practice schedules hundreds of patient appointments each week or a hundred every month no-shows cost. Until fairly recently even the largest health providers were failing to make reminder calls on a regular basis. Mainly due to the fact that front desk staff need to prioritize dealing with the patients they have coming and going during the day: Usually therefore only being able to make reminder calls if and when they have a spare moment – And that can be particularly difficult for staff working in larger medical practices.

Automated Appointment Scheduling
The consequences of no-shows are variable. However, lost productivity is usually inevitable. And for larger health providers that loss is substantial: Hence generally speaking they have been the first to realise the importance of making patient appointment reminder calls – And that doing so does make a notable difference with regards to reducing no-shows. However, for the most they also realised that taking on more staff to deal with this was not as cost-effective as utilising an automated appointment scheduling system.

Automated Appointment Scheduling is now utilized by some of the largest health providers in the US and Canada – To deal with patient appointment scheduling as well as reminder calls. The statistics have revealed that patient appointment reminder calls work. And because no-shows are reduced, waiting lists are reduced which means patients are generally seen quicker.

Redeploying Resources
Another benefit of automated appointment scheduling is that staff are free to other tasks. Patient appointment scheduling can literally consume the time of front desk staff which can leave patients either waiting in reception or on the end of the telephone. Medical appointment scheduling software can deal with calls as well as make reminder calls. Staff can be redeployed which also means overall medical practice management can be improved.

Customised To Suit
Automated appointment scheduling software can be customised to suit the needs of each individual practice. More advanced systems also have language selection. Email reminders as well as sms text reminders are also an option with some systems. Overall automated appointment scheduling and reminders helps medical practices utilise their human resources to the max. They are cost-effective and can help improve overall medical practice management without too much hassle. Implementing web based systems is relatively easy and maintenance free – For most, a step in the right direction…