Doctor’s answering services are revolutionizing the way medical professionals administer care. Even if you’ve heard about these services, you might wonder what exactly they do. Medical answering services benefit healthcare providers and patients alike. Read on to learn what these services are, who they are for, and how they benefit everyone involved.
What It Is
When a healthcare office or clinic uses a medical answering service, a third-party call center handles its phone calls. Sometimes an office will use an answering service for all of their incoming calls, but more often they use these services for after-hours calls. Call takers in these answering service centers will note the details the caller gives them, and then pass the message on to the medical professional. At this point, the professional can add these details to their files to help deliver the best care possible. Sometimes, they’ll want to see the patient in the next few days to assess the problem themselves.
A doctor’s answering service acts as a 24/7 bridge between the patient and their healthcare providers. Patients can schedule appointments, deliver important information to their doctors, and receive answers to their healthcare queries whenever they need it. Based on what the patient tells the call taker about symptoms or other problems, the call taker will give them advice that will help them until they can make an in-person visit. If the patient has a medical emergency, they are directed to call 9-1-1 or go to the nearest hospital.
Privacy is an ever-growing concern in the information age. If you or your patients are worried about the handling of sensitive health information, make sure your medical answering service is 100% HIPAA compliant. That will ensure that the healthcare information given and received over the phone is handled with the utmost responsibility and discretion.
Who It’s For
Whether you’re a solo medical practitioner, part of a physician’s group, a nurse practitioner, or any other kind of medical professional, an answering service can help you manage your patient’s care. You may not need support with medical call taking during the day, but any office can benefit from an after-hours answering service. When patients have questions, they want answers immediately. Having an open line of communication can give them the answers they need. If a response from a healthcare professional is required, at the very least the patient will be satisfied that their health concerns will reach the professional as soon as they get to work the next day. If you think this service could benefit you in your medical practice, you are the kind of medical professional this service was designed for.
Medical answering services save precious time for doctors and other healthcare professionals. Instead of having their personal or home phones going off at all hours of the night, you can passively collect information while you’re not at work, and address it when the workday starts. This assurance that your patients are receiving the care they need, even when you’re not on the clock, helps relieve some of the stress of your extremely demanding job.
Answering services can also ease the burden of your support staff. If your office’s phones never stop ringing, or if you don’t have enough staff to answer all of the calls you get, an answering service may be for you. An answering service can handle all of your office’s calls or just the ones that come in after hours. Either way, patients will become accustomed to using the service, and it will ease the burden on your own office’s call taking capabilities.
A medical answering service doesn’t just give peace of mind to the healthcare providers; it gives peace of mind to the patients as well. Knowing that they can have some kind of contact with their doctor at all hours will reassure them that their health concerns are heard and will be addressed, no matter what. The undivided attention they receive from call takers can help them receive answers to their healthcare questions, and feel at ease that their problems will be dealt with in a timely manner.
Whatever your call answering needs are, there’s a chance that an answering service could benefit your medical practice. Do you have more questions about answering services? Contact ROI solutions today or schedule a free, no-obligation medical answering service consultation.