When starting an appointment, both the patient and the clinic reception prioritize speed, but we must not forget that good quality care is essential. For this to happen, it is important to create methods and formulas that optimize care, making it possible to save time during patient scheduling.
Not only in large clinics but also offices, time is often too rushed: answering phone calls, welcoming and registering patients, preparing the reception for the day's appointments, among other tasks that are practiced throughout the day. Since the activities performed need not only agility but also quality, we list below some tips for you to achieve better optimization of time with your patients.
Before we continue, we need to know: Do you, a healthcare professional, already use medical software to provide care to your patients? We invite you to discover Ninsaúde Apolo, an online software that can be used by any specialty. Learn more at our apolo.app website.
First of all, it is important to know that the purpose of technology is to simplify the daily routine of clinics and bring greater convenience not only to health professionals and secretaries but also to the patient.
Imagine you are a patient and need to schedule an appointment. The only way to get the appointment is through the phone, however, after making numerous attempts, the phone shows a busy signal or simply calls without anyone answering. This situation can have only one result: a frustrated patient going to look for another health professional to care for him.
Therefore, it is important to offer different methods to be able to complete an appointment, the most common being online scheduling. If you do not have a website, you can still incorporate online scheduling in your social networks through a link, where the patient will have access to the times available in the health professional's schedule, so that he can make the appointment himself without the need to make calls.
Another advantage is that, since the online appointment is available every day for 24 hours, the patient will be able to make the appointment with greater ease and peace of mind, which ends up increasing the number of visits by health professionals.
You can still use Alexa in your service environment. Alexa is a tool developed by Amazon that has several uses: it can perform tasks ranging from making a call to playing music by simple voice command.
A well-organized schedule requires time, after all, schedules need to be confirmed one by one. This action can take many hours if the volume of patients is high, so it is interesting to use a tool that gives the possibility to perform these confirmations automatically.
Whatsapp is a tool that has proven to be very useful in clinics and offices, especially about appointments. With Whatsapp, you can perform confirmations automatically, as is the case with the existing functionality in Ninsaúde Apolo. Through a link sent by Whatsapp, when accessing it, the patient can confirm or cancel the appointment. Once this is done, based on the patient's response, the system itself updates the status of the consultation without requiring the secretary to intervene.
Filling out a registration form and checking in the patient
When a patient is booked for the first time, only their contact information is entered into the system, even for the sake of practicality as other information will be irrelevant at that time. However, there comes a certain time when the patient's registration needs to be completed in full, and this action can also be done practically by the patient himself, leaving the receptionist/secretary free for other activities.
Through the email marketing tool, for example, you can schedule the triggering of automatic messages containing the patient's registration form so that they can fill it out at home or in any other place before the appointment. In the Ninsaúde Apolo software, it is possible to schedule this type of e-mail for every appointment for a particular service, or even for patients whose records are classified in a particular group, ICD, gender, etc.
By clicking on the schedule, on the Reception tab, it is possible to generate a QR Code that allows the registration form to be opened on any device, such as a tablet or smartphone. By clicking on the schedule, on the Reception tab, it is possible to generate a QR Code that allows the registration form to be opened on any device, such as a tablet or smartphone. In this way, all you need to do is generate the code and ask the patient to fill in the form until the time for their care.
The patient is not always able to schedule the appointment for the date he would like, especially when the health professional is in great demand and always has a full schedule. In general, the patient usually leaves his name with the secretary so that she can inform her when a time has become vacant, which would need to have manual control of these future new vacancies in the schedule.
Using software such as Ninsaúde Apolo, the patient can schedule the appointment for a more distant date and request that their name be placed on the waiting list, where they will be on an alert for vacancies.
With this mechanism, the system will list all available times for a given period, and whenever the secretary accesses the alerts page, she can then contact the patient to offer that new date and/or time that was vacated. Learn more about this functionality in our article "Find out how to retain patients with the Ninsaúde Apolo vacancy alert".
We know that the patient's medical record concerns only the patient, and no one other than the patient and the healthcare professional should have access to such information, and the breach of this confidentiality may result in fines and other penalties according to HIPAA.
However, a lot of patient information can be accessed even by secretaries, as they are responsible for collecting various data; there is also the fact that other information does not even concern the patient itself, but often about the schedule itself. This type of information, which we call personal data, can be entered in places of common access in the system and does not break HIPAA rules, so the place to be entered must be easily accessible.
This is also possible with Ninsaúde Apolo since the system itself creates some automatic warnings that are registered in the patient's record. For example, if the patient visited the clinic today and has already scheduled the next appointment, the system itself creates an alert stating that the patient has a future appointment.
This type of alert, some other features, and fields can be used to quickly enter patient information.
Did you like the tips? Follow the blog to stay on top of the news, and if you are not a Ninsaúde Apolo user yet, contact us through the site and request a demonstration. Go to apolo.app.