Benefits of a Medical Answering Service

November 17th, 2008

An answering system is an important communication tool in modern medical practice. As a medical practitioner you should be aware of the features such a system can provide you with when shopping for one for your own practice.

  1. A good answering system will help you respond to patient queries in a timely manner and must be available 24/7. It should free you from having to depend upon live receptionists all the time. As a backup to live receptionists, you should be able to forward your business calls to your answering system on BUSY (when your line is taken), on NO-ANSWER (when you can not pick up a call), or IMMEDIATE (when you are off work or on vacation).
  2. Advanced medical answering system can help you acquiring new patients even on after-hours. Some system can engage in natural language dialog with callers, plays your voice instruction giving a list of accepted insurance policy. Allows caller to reserve a new patient appointment after they have heard your instruction.
  3. Many answering systems can make patient reminder call. In addition, if your see patients who speaks language other than English. You can make your reminder calls friendlier to them by using a phone reminder system that has multilingual capacity.
  4. A medical answering service enables you to attend to questions and messages even when you are short-staffed. The service helps you maintain a schedule and keep your staff happy so that they can enjoy their lunchtime, breaks, sick leaves, holidays, unforeseen emergencies, etc. It frees your staff so that they can attend to matters that contribute directly to patient well-being and your clinic’s bottom line.
  5. You can customize your medical answering service to reflect your specialty in the medical field – so whether you are an obstetrician, oncologist, or cardiologist you can get an answering system that reflects the significance, delicacy, and specific nature of your calls. Customizations such as managing and viewing multiple doctor schedules; defining individual appointment profiles and rules for telephone messaging, etc are also possible. You can also define the rules for managing emergency calls.
  6. You can gather valuable data on a variety of issues with the help of a medical answering service that can be programmed to ask questions to callers. You can inform patients on healthcare specific to their condition. You can subtly advertise your practice and refer other physicians to the caller.
  7. A medical answering service that helps you achieve HIPAA compliance in a systematic manner is a great asset. You can breathe easy about the privacy and confidentiality of patient records.
  8. Physicians depend a lot upon referrals to boost their medical practice. A medical answering service keeps them in the loop about new cases even if they are not present to receive the calls themselves.
  9. A virtual medical answering service that works 24 x 7 and can be deployed to do the shifts when live receptionists are not present is a great cost-saving investment. In the long term it works out cheaper than employing human receptionists. Such a service is free from the limitations regarding language and number of calls that can be handled at a time.
  10. If the medical answering service offers digital recording of all phone conversations, it places you in a better position to treat patients, tackle complaints, and maybe lawsuits from irate patients as well.

Thus, for a medical practitioner, there are many positives that come out of having a medical answering service to work in conjunction with the front-end reception desk managed by live personnel.

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