Having patients linger in your waiting room for hours past their scheduled appointment times should be a thing of the past. Today’s patients expect to be seen promptly. Delayed appointments, outdated filing systems, and a lengthy or convoluted check-in process may cause clients to seek medical services elsewhere – even if you provide top-quality care.
Modern workflow systems and recent advances in technology can take your medical practice to the next level.
Here are four strategies you can implement to improve patient retention and increase your practice’s efficiency.
1. Hire a Virtual Assistant
The work-from-home revolution has proved game-changing for every industry, including the healthcare field.
While some tasks – such as leading patients to their rooms or taking vitals – require an in-person aide, many of the administrative duties at a healthcare clinic can be tackled by a medical virtual assistant.
These thoroughly vetted and rigorously trained professionals can take over every task that doesn’t require face-to-face interaction, dramatically improving workflow and freeing up your in-person staff to focus on patient experience.
2. Cut Down on Paperwork
Most clients are turned off by healthcare clinics that still rely on physical filing systems to handle patient data; the practice appears outdated and inefficient, and it creates more opportunities for error.
Modern technology can capture data like blood pressure and temperature automatically. Moving to an electronic system allows nurses and doctors to use dictation software to update patient records, maximizing efficiency and cutting down on appointment lengths.
Eliminating the time your staff spends making copies and managing paper documents lets them focus on their most important task: taking care of your patients.
3. Implement an Effective Scheduling System
Outdated scheduling systems create unnecessary downtime and make it easier for your staff to accidentally double-book patients.
An electronic scheduling system eliminates these types of human errors and ensures a balanced, efficient schedule each day your clinic is open. Patients will also have an easier time rescheduling appointments, cutting down on latecomers and no-shows.
Consider offering online scheduling to your patients, so they have time to review their schedules and choose the appointment windows that work best for them.
4. Use Electronic Kiosks for Check-Ins
A physical check-in process leads to long wait times and can result in your clinic being chronically behind schedule. Patients often have to take time off work for healthcare appointments and are bound to get frustrated when they have to wait to be seen.
Switching to an e-check-in system – whether by using self-serve kiosks at the front desk or allowing patients to check in on their mobile devices – improves your office’s efficiency and patient experience in three major ways.
- It speeds up the check-in process, cutting down on wait times and helping your office stay on schedule.
- It takes an unnecessary burden off your in-person employees’ shoulders, improving morale and allowing them to focus on taking care of your patients.
- It gives patients agency and makes their experience at your office more about the care they receive and less about the paperwork they have to complete.
From fast food restaurants to airports, businesses across all industries are moving to electronic and mobile check-in processes. Patients expect the same degree of convenience and efficiency from their doctors’ offices.
Thanks to modern improvements in technology and workflow practices, healthcare facilities are finally losing their reputations for long wait times and endless paperwork. Ensure your practice remains up-to-date by incorporating these new systems into your daily operations.
Increasing your clinic’s efficiency does more than help your office run more smoothly. It improves your patients’ experience and allows you to focus on your most important job: providing excellent healthcare.