Appointment reminders are now an integrated offering from our practice management software. Our vendor offers an intelligent and reliable reminder tool that has saved us time and money, increased reliability, and allows our patients to choose a communication method.
This has resulted in fewer no-shows or missed visits and happier patients. Our practice is no longer fielding complaints about not getting reminders or getting too many reminders from our old system. Now, patients set their own preferences to receive text, calls, or emails for appointment reminders or prompts to review important portal information, such as test results.
When patients need a new provider, they head straight to Google. Online reviews give current patients a chance to evaluate their provider experience and share feedback with other current and potential patients.
We found it was highly beneficial to implement a reputation management tool so we could quickly reach out to patients if they had or perceived a negative experience.
Our practice management software interfaces with Google Reviews and asks patients to rate their experience immediately after their appointment.
Thankfully, our hard work is paying off, and we see how our care is positively impacting patients. For instance, in a recent week of 1,267 reviews, 1,076 of them rated us five stars (85 percent) and 157 (12 percent) rated us four stars.
More importantly, the system solicits feedback from the patients, so office staff can easily identify and reach out to the six patients who gave us one-star reviews. We are addressing their concerns and making sure they receive the proper care. Their negative feedback ultimately helps us deliver higher quality medicine. This type of online reputation building also helps attract new patients to the practice.
Billing management advancements have been another unexpected perk of our practice management platform. We bill as quickly as possible and see many payers settle claims in less than seven days.
Our software helps us identify, organize, and track denials so we can easily rework or resubmit claims and get paid for the care we already provided. We are able to respond swiftly and flag incorrect codes, add data to incomplete submissions, and proactively initiate appeals when necessary.
As more and more expenses are being pushed from the payer to the patient, the fast user interface of a patient portal is designed to increase access, convenience, and patient satisfaction, including online bill pay, online messaging, appointment requests, and prescription renewals. Our patients more connected to the practice, report increased satisfaction, and our staff has felt a lighter workload with fewer administrative tasks.
The bottom line
Our practice is thriving because of extensive use of technology that has revealed best practices and workflow efficiencies. We are enjoying steady independent growth at a time when many independent practices are being pushed to sell or to join hospital groups in order to stay afloat.
We’re growing at about 13 percent a year and steadily adding providers and patients. Our integrated technology platform has been the foundation of success for both seamless expansion and patient engagement.
We recently surveyed 30,000 patients about our engagement technologies, the backbone of our patient relationship strategy. Early results from 1,200 patients found they are satisfied with the care we provide. The technologies we’ve made available—including online scheduling, patient portal access, and appointment reminders—are making their lives easier and their care experience more complete.
As we manage our practice into the next decade, we look forward to increasing the use of technology to improve our practice and further enhance how we care for patients.
Andrew C. Frankel is COO and co-founder of Pennsylvania Dermatology Partners which operates 14 offices throughout eastern Pennsylvania. If you have any specific questions or would like to know more about how his practice improved patient engagement, please email Andrew at [email protected].