Online Doctor Appointment Scheduling – What´s The Drawbacks?

August 28th, 2011

Online Doctor Appointment Scheduling Software is used by some of the largest health organizations in the US and Canada. Of late, more and more family practices and individually practicing doctors, dentists, osteopaths (just a few examples) are looking toward appointment scheduling software and systems. Some online appointment scheduling systems can deal with a variety of scheduling tasks such as rescheduling and reminder calls. The features of the software varies: Some are more advanced than others. They might provide multiple language selection as well as deal with appointment scheduling calls in addition to emergency calls 24/7. However, not all will actually allow the patient to schedule a doctor appointment online or deal with these tasks. Indeed, some of the free appointment scheduling software available is really quite basic.

Is Automated Appointment Scheduling The Solution?

When staff are becoming ´pushed to the limit´automated and online appointment scheduling systems can really help to take the pressure off. Staff are able to spend more time dealing with other important tasks which can often result in an improvement in services and so the standard of patient care provided. Plus, it can do this cost-effectively. Sounds like a solution right? And yes, appointment scheduling systems have certainly provided a cost-effective solution for many large organizations and medical practitioners to date. So what are the drawbacks, if any?

Drawbacks

For some the modern world of automation seems to be an impersonal solution: Believing ALL patients prefer to speak to someone human. Today most people are more than used to automated systems as well as organizing their business and personal lives online. For the most, the ability to make an appointment by telephone call or online 24/7 is undoubtedly a huge plus. For others, the fact they can still get through to a ´real´person for important emergency calls suits their needs. So everyone has the services and options they need. Overall, surely the advantages push the balance to right way.

Another “drawback”is the issue of data protection. Unfortunately, many of the companies giving away “free”software will sell your patients data. This can certainly be an unacceptable cost to many and and for most a blatant violation of privacy. This is a major issue and this is why paid for appointment scheduling systems and software which protects patient privacy is certainly preferable and many would agree, more professional.

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