This question is very important, as most medical offices wish to use ANGELA as a backup receptionist, not as a permanent one. Patient calls need to be answered by staff whenever they are available and will be answered by ANGELA ONLY IF the staff is busy on another call or not available (i.e., they step away from front-desk or the office is closed).
The desired setup can be easily reached by using a few standard call forwarding services from your telephone service provider. Each type is explained below.
Call forwarding on Busy
When you set up the patient call number to Call Forwarding on Busy, your patient’s calls will be connected to your office as long as the line is not busy. This setup allows ANGELA to take care of the overflow calls. This feature will save your patients from being put on hold or being sent to voicemail.
Call forwarding on No Answer
This setup will allow ANGELA to take care of the calls that are not answered by your staff (i.e., they are away from front-desk or your office is closed).
You telephone service provider usually allows you to define the number of phone rings necessary for a call to be considered as “No Answer”.
Call forwarding immediate (or Unconditionally)
This setup will direct ALL calls to ANGELA without delay. This is the proper choice when you want her to work 24/7.
Keep in mind that ANGELA will forward some patient calls to the contact phone numbers that you give her.
In general, she needs three (same or different) numbers to forward any non-appointment related calls. These numbers can be configured within the scheduler.
1) A number to connect the patient to a live staff person (i.e., a new patient call).
2) A number to connect the patient to an emergency contact (i.e., doctor’s pager).
3) A number to connect the caller to a voicemail system for non-emergency issues.