Patient communications provider, PatientComms, has partnered with cloud communication firm, Infobip, to launch Virtual Waiting Rooms for mobile patient messaging.
Through integration with patient & practice management systems, the PatientComms Portal allows dental practitioners to create and send health-related messages, reminders, recalls and alerts to patients, as well as allow practices to collect post-treatment feedback. Appointment optimisation of this type has led to efficiencies that have improved profitability with the average NHS practice traditionally seeing between 40 to 50 patients a day.
But with as much as 60% of an average 15-minute visit taken up with form filling at reception, today’s pandemic has highlighted a need for wholesale change to how patients are processed.
Virtual Waiting Rooms offer an SMS and online service that allows patients to provide information, review and agree all medical history and consent forms digitally on their own devices without the need for face-to-face contact anywhere in the practice. Each appointment confirmation comes with a secure link to a patient portal containing all forms that need to be filled prior to the consultation. The same portal is used to check-in and can flag when the dentist is ready to see you. The technology means front of house staff can also be redeployed to other higher-value tasks.
The advent of the Covid crisis has emphasized the need for a much more risk-averse end-to-end digital strategy to fit with the new reality facing healthcare professionals and patients. It has seen clinicians having to restrict the types of patient and treatment a dental surgery can currently carry out leading to over 50% decrease in appointments with revenues impacted too.
A service like Virtual Waiting Room introduces new efficiencies so patients still get excellent care while ensuring surgeries stay viable. This is not just a Covid thing anymore. While partly to do with infection risk control – this contactless patient journey will become the new normal. We chose to work with Infobip due to the critical real-time element underpinning the service where messages have to reach patients at the right time, every time.
Max Bentham, Product Director, PatientComms