In 2016, there was a massive estimated 883.7 million office-based physician visits in the US. This figure is unlikely to go down year-on-year and is actually more likely to increase. Therefore, it’s not surprising the doctor’s office can be a busy place for both physicians and patients. This can sometimes lead to issues with patient wait times and their ability to get in touch with a healthcare professional.
But, there are ways to ease the pressure, and one excellent method is to use an automated message. This can operate during normal working hours when staff are already on the phone, and also at other times when there are no staff present to take a call.
Let’s find out how a messaging system can help your doctor’s office.
1. Reduce Patient Frustration
One of the most frustrating problems when contacting a doctor’s office is continually getting an engaged tone on the phone. But, when patients can leave a message on the answering machine, they are more likely to be satisfied because they can now wait for the staff to call them back.
As patient expectations can change over time, it’s important to learn more and keep up-to-date with their demands so you know what they would like to hear in a message.
2. Easily Refill Prescriptions
There is often no need for a patient to speak directly to a doctor’s office receptionist. For example, if they’re ordering a prescription refill, they can simply leave the details in a message. This saves both the receptionist and the patient time.
3. Provide an After-Hours Response
In an emergency, patients often think of calling their doctor’s office before anyone else. Your after-hours message can refer people to appropriate services that are open at those times. You can also help patients with hearing difficulties by offering an automated text message response that can signpost them to the best locations to get help.
4. Cost-Effective Service
Staffing costs can be expensive, so it may not be practical to have a lot of employees in the office to help answer the phone lines. But, when you use an automated message system, there is very little expense. You can record the message once and then reuse it for as long as you like.
5. Advise Patients of Critical Information
There are times when you may need to convey critical information to patients. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, many doctors did not want patients to come to their offices. An automated message could tell people about this change and advise them of new procedures.
You can also include this information in your automated message text system so as many people as possible know about the change.
Create an Automated Message for Your Doctor’s Office
Recording an automated message can be a great asset both for your doctor’s office and for your patients. While it can help reduce your operating costs, you can simultaneously improve your patient experiences. This is also a straightforward solution that a doctor’s office of any size can implement straight away.
Before you start recording your automated doctor’s office message, take some time to browse more useful posts in our Business and Health sections before you go.