A patient’s first encounter with your practice can be a critical part of your relationship. When you onboard a new patient it is important that the experience is fast, easy, and straightforward. This can set the tone moving forward and ensure they have a positive experience.
In addition to the benefits to the patient, if you have an efficient process to bring in new patients, it will save your staff valuable time processing paperwork, improving check-in procedures, reducing time in the waiting room, and improving the process overall. If you are looking to optimize or digitize your practice’s patient intake process, here are five suggestions.
1. Allow for Online Scheduling
Many patients will search the internet to find a provider. If you would like to capitalize on a potential new patient, it is helpful to have an online scheduling option.
This will allow patients to request an appointment. A digital process is faster and more convenient for patients to complete, and they can do it on their own time.
2. Allow Patients to Schedule Online or Virtual Wait List
Scheduling an appointment is often the first step in creating a relationship with your patient. This process can get cumbersome for the potential patient as well as your staff if you are trying to coordinate calendars over the phone. This can take a great deal of time for both sides and can often feel frustrating.
Allowing patients to book their appointments online helps improve patient intake. They may also see services online that they may find interesting. Most platforms allow a quick, streamlined booking process so patients can choose accordingly.
If you have a very busy schedule, you can also consider a virtual waiting list where patients can claim a spot if it happens to open up. This can increase patient satisfaction for those who would like to be seen sooner than appointments allow.
3. Offer Patient Forms, Payments, and Insurance Online
There is vital information you need to gather from patients. If you provide an online option, you may decrease check-in time and reduce filing cumbersome paperwork.
An online patient intake form also allows the patient to feel prepared and committed before coming to your office. They know what to expect and can share some concerns prior to the appointment. It gives the patient time to collect the needed information, reducing frustrating issues with insurance or coverage before showing up.
Patients can upload their ID, sign forms electronically, and read any releases prior to coming through the door.
4. Engage, Communicate and Create a Relationship
It is important to realize that even before the patient comes to your office, you have started the relationship. A text message reminder using a tool such as Practis Communications, a survey, or an electronic map, can all help improve the patient experience.
The goal is to create a lasting, trusting relationship with your patient. As you improve the onboarding process through regular communication, your patient will feel well taken care of and respected.
5. Build a Strong Reputation Online
As more and more patients find and schedule appointments online, it is vital that you work to build a strong online reputation. Many patients find a provider based on reviews from others. As you digitize your patient experience, don’t forget about reviews.
A simple follow-up survey or other outreach can improve your reputation online and help bring in future patients as well.
Your patient’s referrals can often be the best form of marketing and advertising.
Digitize Your Practice Now!
As you work to digitize your patient onboarding and other steps in the process, be sure to review it often and adapt as needed. It is a valuable tool to increase patient satisfaction and staff processes.
Give Practis a call to help you today!