The biggest complaint that Physician Clerical Staff face is patients not being able to schedule visits and checkups when they want them. Most hospitals and physicians offices are extremely crowded and always seem to be busy. Unfortunately, this is something that you just can’t get around. Or at least it seems.
Most physician offices will try to schedule their patients in intervals allowing a few minutes in between appointments to try and combat this. Unfortunately, with walk-ins and patients that need more time, these meetings are difficult to keep on schedule.
How Time Consuming Appointments Affect Patients
Waiting in the doctor’s office lounge can be uncomfortable (especially for those who don’t particularly like hospitals), and over-all leave your patients feeling upset. How many times has a patient complained about the amount of people sitting in the waiting room upon arriving to your office? It can be very frustrating when your patients are not satisfied with your office wait times.
Another major complaint from most patients is long hold times when calling their local doctors office. Furthermore, automated phone systems become even more frustrating leaving your patient restless and upset.
A lot of the time people attempting to schedule make an error in their selection and have to restart the entire process. Once they finally do get past the automation system, they will often hit the voicemail due to staff being busy with other patients. None of your patients are going to want to leave a voicemail and frankly this is a terrible experience for your clientele.
Don’t allow your patients to go through an annoying phone system with there is a better process.
With modern technological advancements, we can now completely automate the appointment making process with software programs. Appointment scheduling programs have grown increasingly popular over the years. With this complete automation process, there are so many possibilities for the office to run much more efficiently.
The initial set up for the system could be a little tricky, but when the installation is complete, patients will immediately notice a difference. The office will run more efficiently, and the patients will never have to worry about scheduling appointments by phone again.
The only real disadvantage of these systems that I have found was the possibility of system failure. In case there is a power outage or a system failure, you should make sure that there is a fail safe system in place. This could be a hard drive or something similar with all the files backed up so that the office can maintain their efficiency without any unnecessary hiccups.
Using an appointment management system is a crucial asset for businesses who rely on meeting times. This can make your business more efficient, and more beneficial to your patients.
One thing you should do prior to making a scheduling overhaul is consulting your patients about the idea. You can have your returning patients take a poll of your current appointment setup in order to deem this software beneficial or not.
With the majority of customer complaints coming from not being able to reach a real person or get an appointment, you should really consider upgrading your software.