When your patients are suddenly awake in the middle of the night with severe pain, they want a solution from their doctor. And even though your patients know that you have a personal life, they count on you to be there for them in their time of need. An answering service can bridge the gap between your personal life and your patient’s needs.
In certain industries, an automated answering service can take the load off the office staff by taking care of a lot of day-to-day tasks. For example, businesses such as restaurants or retail stores, whose customers are often looking for general information such as business hours or directions. While a recording can offer this information, it lacks the personal touch that is often found with a live answering service.
Why do doctors need a medical answering service?
- Improve communication with patients
There is nothing worse for a doctor than missing calls and wasting time playing phone tag with patients. From scheduling appointments to answering questions, a medical answering service can drastically improve communication between your patients and office staff, as well as office productivity and overall patient satisfaction.
- Rank higher as a provider
Ensuring a positive patient experience at your practice leads to other benefits, such as improved reviews and higher provider rankings. Positive patient reviews and high provider rankings are essential to the success of any doctor’s practice. A medical answering service can help a practice become successful by attracting new business and retaining existing patients by providing excellent care.
- Save time
We are all so busy. Outsourcing various communication tasks to a medical answering service is one of the best time-saving tactics any doctor can employ. For example, a medical answering service can send appointment reminders to your patients. Sending appointment reminders is not only courteous but it saves your practice time by preventing missed appointments and provides patients with all the information they need for their visit such as the appointment date, time, or address.
- Never miss a call again
Being busy is never a bad thing when it comes to running your practice – until your patients start to suffer as a result. Your reception staff can only handle so many tasks at once. More than likely, they will miss calls while they’re checking patients in, scheduling appointments, or answering calls. An answering service will answer those calls instead of sending them to a voicemail making your patients feel confident in their choice of doctor.
- Cut through the clutter
Not every call you get is time-sensitive or even requires a lot of attention. These calls are often about your hours, your location, details about services, and other general questions. Rather than have your receptionist spend valuable time answering these calls, an answering service can handle these simple questions efficiently allowing your office staff to give their full attention to the patients in the office at the moment. In the end, this will save time and money and offer your patients top-notch customer care.
How can a medical answering service improve patient outcomes?
- Provide 24/7 customer support
Most doctor’s offices close around 5 pm. But what happens when your patients need to speak with someone after 5 pm? Hiring a medical answering service means providing your patients with phone service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This provides your patients with flexibility and diminishes the number of voicemails your office staff needs to respond to when your practice opens each morning.
- Improve the patient experience
Whether assisting patients in the office, speaking with insurance companies, or processing payments, medical practice staff have their hands full with all kinds of office tasks. Even though every call deserves an attentive and friendly response, office staff may become too busy to provide quality care. Medical answering service agents are highly trained in offering first-class patient service and in multiple medical office functions, providing your patients with the care they want and need.
- Be available for emergencies
While most doctor offices are only open during normal business hours (8 am-5 pm), a patient can experience an emergency at any hour of the day. If a patient wakes up with severe abdominal pain at 3 am and reaches out to their doctor, an answering service can gather information from the patient to help you determine the severity of your patient’s condition. This allows you to maintain communication with your patients at all hours without sharing your personal information and also allows for the operator to filter the calls and determine which truly need your immediate attention.
- Retain patients by giving them what they want
The doctor/patient relationship is a very unique bond. Your patients trust you with some of their most personal information and they count on you to be there when they need you. Even though this relationship is highly personal, your patients know that there are plenty of other doctors available should they become upset or disappointed with your care.
By offering a service that allows your patients to reach you at all hours of the day, you create an atmosphere that showcases your commitment to their well-being. Whether your patients need answers to simple questions or assistance with a medical emergency – we can be there to respond and provide the care they need on your behalf. You can determine how we treat each type of call and what we do with your messages, whether you choose to receive them by email or text message, and even how often you will receive them.
Not every answering service is equipped to assist a medical practice. A professional medical answering service like Northwest Telephone Answering Service provides your patients with an easy solution when they need to reach you. Patients left to sit on hold or asked to leave voicemails is a thing of the past when you work with the experienced operators at Northwest Telephone Answering Service. Our team of highly trained agents have the experience and knowledge to seamlessly support your patients as well as a member of your staff would.
For more information about our personalized services and how they can help your medical practice, contact us today!