Improving Patient Communication During COVID-19

 
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Over the past few weeks, practices across the country have found themselves in a “first of its kind” scenario. What was once an industry driven by in-person interactions has now become a system of virtual visits, and multi-channel communication streams. 

This presents some unique challenges that have left practices asking which tools they need in order to maintain positive communications with existing and prospective patients throughout this crisis.

To help with this we’ve developed this “Technology Toolkit for Patient Communication” that highlights a list of options you can explore to help set your practice up for success.

Telemedicine 

There are many HIPAA-compliant telehealth solutions available on the market. Below are a few of the platforms our healthcare clients are implementing along with some other highly-rated options:

  • Doxy.me:  A simple telehealth solution, with a free option, that can get you up and running very quickly.
  • One-Touch Telehealth:  A robust telehealth platform with offerings for practice groups, hospitals, and health groups.
  • Spruce:  Provides multi-channel communication solutions including telemedicine, 2-way communication, and phone systems.
  • TouchMD:  Telehealth and marketing solution with a focus on plastic surgery, dermatology, and med spas.
  • Symplast:  A mobile EHR/PMS solution that is currently waiving telehealth fees for 60 days.
  • Zoom for Healthcare:  One of the most popular video conferencing platforms for businesses that also has a HIPAA-compliant platform for healthcare.

Here’s a link to Capterra’s list of top-rated telehealth softwarelink

NOTE:  On March 17th, 2020, the Department of Health & Human Services announced that it is waiving potential HIPAA penalties for good faith use of telemedicine.  This means that for the near term, platforms like FaceTime, Zoom, Skype and Google Hangouts can provide a short-term bridge as we deal with the Coronavirus crisis.

Webchat + Patient Communication Tools

Technology and innovation have greatly improved our ability to communicate with a wide audience in a quick and efficient way.  Healthcare practices now have multiple channels for communicating with patients who are engaging with their offices.  

Here are a couple of tools to explore:

  • OhMD:  Offers 2-way texting, team collaboration and recently added video-visits; integrates with 55 EHRs.
  • MedChat:  Provides live chat, 2-way texting and recently rolled out website “chat bot” and “answer bot” functionality.
  • QliqSOFT:  Patient + provider communication platform with secure messaging and virtual visit workflows.
  • Well App: A multi-channel patient communication tool that offers live chat, email, text and even phone capabilities.
  • Health Engage:  Web chat, text, and live chat to streamline patient communication.
  • Swell – Review management platform that also provides 2-way texting and web chat functionality for lead intake.

Lead Intake & Nurturing

Practices today are investing heavily in new patient acquisition.  Ensuring you have a process to maximize revenue from inbound lead inquiries has never been more important than they are today.  

Lead Management Platforms

  • MyMedLeads:  Web-based platform designed to help automate lead nurturing and provide visibility from lead intake all the way to revenue capture.  Will integrate with your EMR or work as a stand-alone product.
  • MDProspects:  Web-based software designed for medical practices to manage leads, improve patient conversion rates, and grow revenues.

A Few Additional Resources

Conclusion

If you’ve put off adding technology to your practice in the past, now is probably a great time to explore adding these capabilities.  

These technology solutions will not only help you navigate the current business disruption we are facing but will certainly set your practice up to thrive in the future.