How to Better Manage Healthcare Appointments During and After the Coronavirus Pandemic

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Healthcare providers have been greatly challenged by Covid-19. According to research, 50% of doctors in Ireland feel overwhelmed. With social distancing and new measures in place, practitioners must operate very differently in order to ensure that everyone is safe and minimize the risk of the virus spreading. Managing healthcare appointments is proving to be more difficult during this time. Given that circumstances are changing at a rapid pace, it is crucial that healthcare workers have communication strategies and systems in place that allow them to quickly, easily and effectively engage with their patients.

There are a number of ways in which mobile messaging can help professionals better manage their healthcare appointments during and after the coronavirus pandemic.

Survey and triage patients with Two-Way SMS

In order to reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19, healthcare practitioners may wish to ask patients a series of questions prior to their appointments. This may include asking patients if they’re experiencing concerning symptoms such as a temperature or cough. This helps to establish the steps that need to be taken to ensure the patient receives the best care possible.

With VoiceSage’s SMS, it is simple to send patients detailed questionnaires before their appointments. As SMS has a typical response rate of 90 seconds, it is an extremely efficient way of receiving information.

Our AutoTriage service allows you to automatically send your patients customized questionnaires via text message. The process is fast and convenient for patients, as they do not need to install any app or login to any site. Once they receive the SMS, they can simply reply to the questions with their answers. Each question will have a set range of expected responses, and based on their answers, they will navigate through a “decision tree” which will automatically decide the next question.

Once the questionnaire has been completed and the patient has been assessed, it can be determined whether or not it is safe for them to attend the practise, or if more urgent actions are required. All the responses can be exported via CSV, sent via SFTP, or consumed via an API, so that they are well documented and accessible.

Patient Triage SMS

Send automated reminders of healthcare appointments with Rich Media Messaging

Rich Media Messaging (RMM) allows you to send rich, engaging media to patients through customized mobile journeys. The messages are fully personalizable and give you the option to include fully branded content like logos, fonts, image carousels, pdfs, videos, and specific call-to-action buttons. With click through rates of over 60%, sending automated appointment reminders via RMM is an excellent way to ensure your patients do not miss their visit. Sending appointment reminders to patients is quick and easy, and even gives them the ability to self-serve. Some examples of self-serve actions that patients may take via RMM include:

  • Confirming their appointment
  • Rescheduling their appointment
  • Canceling their appointment
  • Requesting to speak with a member of staff if they have any queries or concerns

With Rich Media Messaging (RMM), you can even go a step further by adding the “save the date” feature within our easy to use campaign builder. With this, patients simply need to click a button, and their appointment will automatically be added to the calendar on their mobile phone.

Alternatively, you can send your patients automated appointment reminders via Interactive Voice Messaging (IVM), which also allows patients to confirm or reschedule their appointments. The service performs patient validation and identification prior to any interactions with your internal booking system, to ensure you are receiving the correct information. Patients even have the option of receiving an SMS confirmation of the booking for their personal reference.

Manage Healthcare Appointment Reminder RMM

Securely send patients important information

Using Rich Media Messaging (RMM) is also a great way to safely send details and documents to patients following their appointments. There are many documents that you may wish to securely send to patients via RMM including:

  • Appointment receipts
  • Medical prescriptions
  • Fact sheets following a diagnosis
  • Information on upcoming procedures or appointments
  • Test results

You can also send informational messages in-between appointments to ensure that your patients are kept up to date on the latest news. Examples of information that you may wish to send include:

  • Office opening hours
  • Location maps
  • Policy updates
  • Safety measures such as social distancing
  • Routine reminders (e.g. seasonal flu vaccination reminders)
  • Emergency updates

Conduct patient satisfaction surveys after healthcare appointments

Conducting satisfaction surveys following appointments can greatly help you gain insights into how patients are finding your service. You can create and deliver Rich Media Messaging surveys that include engaging features such as rating faces, rating sliders, check boxes, paragraph boxes and radio buttons. The information you gather from surveys can be evaluated and used to determine what actions you can take to further improve your service and manage future appointments.

Patient Survey RMM

Get started with mobile messaging today

We would love to further discuss how our mobile messaging solutions can help healthcare providers to survey and triage patients, send appointment reminders, distribute important follow-up information, and conduct satisfaction surveys. To learn more about how we can help you better manage your healthcare appointments during and after the coronavirus pandemic, contact our team today.Contact Us to Learn More About How to Manage Healthcare Appointments

Published on: 30th June 2020

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