Medical centers are under increasing pressure to do more with less, which can lead to increased stress for employees and staff burnout. Using technology to improve efficiency and productivity is key, and SMS messaging can be the perfect solution.
Business messaging via SMS is a simple and accessible communication channel already in use by many practices to manage appointments, but other uses can greatly reduce the time and resources required for outbound calling to patients.
In this article, we look at how SMS for patients can minimize the need for outbound phone calls, resulting in better patient communications and greater productivity for your medical center.
Patient notifications of results
With so many patients requiring various medical tests, notifying patients of the results places a significant burden on your staff. Each patient must be contacted individually, which is time your staff could better utilize elsewhere. If calls go unanswered or to voicemail, this is wasted time, especially when people are increasingly ignoring phone calls.
Certain test results will always require a personal phone call to a patient, but in many cases the patient simply needs to be notified of the results and that no further action is required.
For these results, there is SMS notification. It’s quick, direct and efficient.
Tell patients of your other services
Making patients aware of your other services is a great way to fill up appointments, particularly during the relevant season. For example, remind your customers to have regular skin checks before or after summer, or offer flu shots just before flu season.
Traditionally, medical centers may send letters to patients about other services, however, such campaigns are costly, time-consuming and provide little return in investment.
Sending text reminders is not only more effective – SMS messages are opened and acted upon in great rates than any other method – but it’s significantly cheaper than other means of communication.
Better patient follow-up and outcomes
SMS messages from medical practices prompt a response rate well above average at 70 percent. So using SMS for patient communication to follow up with patients and remind them to make additional appointments is extremely effective. This significantly improves your patient follow-up rate and frees staff for core tasks and handling incoming calls. Moreover, better rates of follow-up improve medical outcomes and, ultimately, patient satisfaction.