Like most industries, the healthcare industry is evolving. At the center of this evolution is a shift in expectations around the patient experience. In all facets of life, consumers have become accustomed to a more personalized, customer centric experience, and they are increasingly expecting the same out of their healthcare providers. In fact, studies have show that 66% of consumers would choose a provider on the ability to communicate in a timely and consistent manner, 60% say it is critical for providers to show how well they understand the individual beyond basic patient data, and 75% of U.S. consumers wish their healthcare experiences were more personalized. The good news? Technology has made it easier for practices to build the types of experiences that patients expect, and with the power of automation this can be done with fewer resources than ever before.
To many, the word “automation” seems in conflict with the idea of a personalized experience. In practice, however, automation done right will make patients feel like your practice really knows them. The key to this lies in the data you capture about your patients and how you leverage that data to build a great experience.
To understand this, let’s imagine two different patient experiences for an upcoming appointment.
It’s a week before the appointment and the office staff makes manual phone calls to try and confirm upcoming appointments. The patient doesn’t pick up because nobody answers calls from unrecognized numbers anymore, and a game of phone tag ensues. Text message confirmations are sent from a 5 digit short code that doesn’t allow for 2 way conversation between patient and the office. At the end of the appointment, the patient receives printed out instructions for managing post appointment care.
Now, imagine a series of communications that go out to your patients based on the preferences that they have indicated. A recorded call, an email with embedded video that provides educational information specific to the appointment, and text reminders that can initiate a two way text conversation with front office staff should the patient have any questions or concerns. After the appointment, the patient is enrolled in a multi-touch, post-appointment care protocol campaign to ensure adherence and the best possible outcome.
Which of those experiences feels more personalized to you? What you may come to realize when you look at it this way, is that personalization is more about the design of the experience and the data that drives it, and less about whether it was automated or executed manually.
And what’s even better? By leveraging powerful tools like Vital Interaction to build out these personalized experiences you can free up your staff to focus on delivering the kind of in-person experiences that only people can provide.
Truly a win-win.