Digital Front Door or Digital Marketing Strategy? This Medical Group Says, “Both”.

by Case Studies, Patient Self-Scheduling

Highlights

Deliverables: 24/7 self-scheduling access for patients •  Integration with NextGen

Results: 4k self-scheduled appointment requests monthly • Reduced incoming patient call volume • Clear CTA’s on the website and social media channels

“Think about how patients interact with other types of businesses,” a customer* recently told us, “they need a clean call to action.” The Vice President of Call Center Operations who oversees practice communication for a medical group with nearly 80 practice locations explained that they needed a good digital front door for patients to enter their organization, schedule appointments, and ramp up newly acquired practices—they implemented Patient Self-Scheduling with Relatient.

One of the largest dermatology practices in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern states, this medical group is hyper-focused on expanding patient access. They told us that patient self-scheduling is an important “spoke in the digital marketing wheel” because patients have come to expect the ease of a “click to book” call to action (CTA) when interacting with information on social media or their website. “Without a clean CTA, you’re really just leveraging awareness and hoping they call,” their VP of Call Center Operations explained. But calling to schedule a doctor’s appointment is limited by call center operating hours and patients often abandon their efforts to schedule when they encounter a phone tree or get put on hold. Extending 24/7 access to the appointment schedule means they can fill open appointment slots on the weekends and after hours, reducing missed opportunities and patient attrition.  

Today, this Relatient customer receives over four thousand appointment requests every month through patient self-scheduling and continues to expand self-scheduling to more locations and providers. In addition to expanding access to patients and making it easier to retain patients and grow their patient base, self-scheduling is helping reduce the burden on their busy call center, putting more work on technology and less on individuals. 

Leveraging a Total Strategy 

For this medical group, self-scheduling is just one piece of a larger strategy designed to facilitate easy communication between patients and their providers. Multi-channel messaging, including automated appointment reminders and recalls, keeps no-shows and last-minute cancellations low while broadcast messaging powers the delivery of critical updates to the masses when offices have to close, COVID-19 procedures change, or other disruptions arise. They also describe automated health campaigns as “our one, total answer to plugging in an automated message that was intelligent; that we could have confidence was working every day and driving business and driving safety to the patients and the practices.”

*Our customers are gracious to share their stories and outcomes with us; sometimes corporate policies or organizational structures mean they can’t publish their names alongside their stories. We’re grateful nonetheless. 

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