Enhanced Patient Encounters

Enhanced Patient Encounters

Even though we’re becoming increasingly connected to our mobile devices, it can still be challenging to find time to call the doctor and schedule an appointment. For a working adult or parent, an office that is open between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. isn’t always convenient. After all, when patients are juggling a packed calendar of family and professional responsibilities, they might not have time to stop to look after their health.

This healthcare challenge example illustrates how our schedules and the demands of daily life, such as having to go to work or shuttle the kids to and from school, are driving the demand for convenient access to healthcare outside the traditional window.

Technology is transforming healthcare and aiding providers and patients alike. Devices and wearables allow healthcare providers and physicians to diagnose patient issues accurately and quickly, giving patients more insight into their health. Similarly, we see this reflected in telemedicine, which lets healthcare providers and physicians effectively diagnose conditions, prescribe medications and monitor their patients without a physical visit.

With these technological advancements, patients no longer need to physically visit an office to receive an accurate diagnosis or professional monitoring of specific conditions. The question is, what does this mean for today’s practice?

Virtual Patient Care

By embracing technology, practices now offer virtual care. This convenient service allows clients to log in to view information and functions as a virtual office. There is more than one way to create an “always-open” practice, though. One such way is to offer a comprehensive patient portal. Allowing patients online access to interact and communicate with your practice closes the consumer care and information gap.

Beyond care, there is now new technology available for virtual patient payments as well. From text-to-pay SMS payments to the ever-convenient card-on-file payments, the payment landscape is changing. Offering an array of patient payment solutions has become a differentiating factor in increasing patient satisfaction and retention rates.

Making patient care virtual — whether it’s a complete end-to-end solution or hybrid combination of care offerings — has numerous benefits for staff and patients. It can streamline various processes, increasing productivity and allowing staff more time to focus on critical responsibilities. In addition, this process improvement gives patients convenient access to their medical information whenever they need it. When people manage a job and other daily responsibilities, it can be hard for them to find time to make an appointment or view their health details. A virtual patient portal is an easy-to-use option for patients that allows flexible access to essential information at any time.

Contactless payment solutions

As the healthcare industry continues to evolve, medical providers are adapting and offering care to match their patients’ unique needs. Staying abreast of all industry trends is vital as the patient care landscape grows and changes. Digital healthcare payments are a convenient way for patients to settle a medical bill.

Contactless payment solutions are an efficient option that can protect staff and patients’ health and safety. Through this technology, you can allow your patients to pay by touching their mobile device or card to a digital reader. Patients can even choose to pay online if they do not have time to visit the office. The benefits of implementing contactless payment solutions include the following.

  • Patient experience: Contactless payments are simple and quick, offering a better patient payment experience. Patient satisfaction is paramount in the healthcare industry. Improving a patient’s overall experience can change their opinion of your practice, making them more likely to visit again in the future.
  • Process efficiency: Contactless payments are a more effective and efficient option, decreasing the amount of time a patient spends in the office waiting to submit their payment. More efficient payments can also prevent a line of patients from forming, reducing the likelihood of long wait times.
  • Office productivity: Another benefit of contactless payments is they can increase in-office productivity. With contactless options, staff spend less time working with patients to help them submit a payment. A streamlined digital payment process allows your team to focus more of their valuable time and attention on other responsibilities and tasks.
  • Secure payments: Contactless payments are safe and secure. Full encryption makes duplication and hacking virtually impossible. When a patient uses a contactless payment method, it creates a single-use code for the transaction. Even if a third party happens to intercept the code, they can’t use it to commit fraud.
  • Payment options: Contactless payments are also convenient because a patient can take advantage of multiple options. Even if someone has forgotten to bring their wallet, they can still make a quick, secure digital payment. Patients can even pay online without having to visit the office.
  • Contactless payments: Reduce the spread of germs by offering contactless payments. Implementing Apple Pay®, SamsungPay®, and Google Pay™ lets patients use their devices to make a payment, and do not require direct contact with staff members, reducing the likelihood of contagion.

Living in a Digital World

Accessibility drives patient decisions. Cost will be a top concern for the foreseeable future, and virtual care addresses this as well. Virtual visits can help lower the cost of care.

Technology can only partially replace the bond between provider and patient, but it can enhance this connection in other ways. To improve these relationships, there are practical ways for a practice to offer convenience and accessibility. Solid communication serves as the foundation to a healthy and happy patient encounter. The practice can add virtual tools to transform the office and offer options such as text messaging appointment reminders, access to a robust patient portal, and online payments to view and pay balances.

Every Interaction Is an Opportunity

Ultimately, there is no one a patient trusts more than their doctor, closely followed by the other healthcare professionals who work in the office. When a credible professional presents alternative care options, it can be the catalyst to change in patient behavior. Offering choices like those mentioned here can also serve to reduce the burden on the front desk staff.

By enhancing patient care, even providers can feel a positive effect. The ideal solution is for a virtual office to enable healthcare providers to optimize patient time and deliver care at reduced costs. Patients and providers alike view the convenience of a virtual office as a positive and welcome option that allows the patient to get the right care at the right time.

Convenience, accessibility, and availability are the driving factors toward a change in the traditional healthcare office. Through technology, healthcare organizations can offer patient-centered tools to ensure patients can easily access care services. At Rectangle Health, we present an array of solutions to create efficiencies for your staff and options for your patients.

Our products provide solutions for all stages of care, whether at the office or after hours. Today, Practice Management Bridge® by Rectangle Health serves over 60,000 providers with easily integrated solutions that simultaneously increase staff and patient satisfaction.

Content Updated November 12, 2021

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