The answer to this question is a resounding yes, but that’s not enough of an answer for responsible businesses owners. Before you can commit to partnering with an answering service, you’ll need to understand the many benefits associated with hiring this vital service provider. You’ll need to know where your money is going and the return this expense infers. Here are just a few reasons why investing in a reliable answering service is a justifiable expense for your medical practice.
Customer Satisfaction and Staff Morale
The driving force for many healthcare professionals is a desire to help people in need. However, this can be difficult when the phone is ringing off the hook and patients are lined up, waiting for care. In addition, medical practices can’t keep their doors open day and night. Physicians, nurses, and other staff need time outside of work hours to lead their own lives. When patients can’t get through, when they’re routed to voicemail, they may be understandably upset.
Providing the best patient care means freeing up staff to do the jobs they were hired for and transferring menial tasks like answering phones and making calls to support services. Yes, an answering service costs money. However, it can improve a medical practice in a number of ways, starting with patient satisfaction and staff morale.
An answering service ensures that someone always answers the phone, providing 24/7 assistance for patients whether your office is experiencing high call volume or calls come in outside of business hours. Operators can route calls accordingly, increasing overall patient satisfaction and ensuring that your office never misses an important call, or alternately, that medical professionals aren’t bothered with questions the operator is qualified to answer.
Physicians and nurses can focus on the important task of providing patient care, without distraction, during office hours. They can also enjoy their time away from the office, knowing that operators will evaluate calls to determine which cases are serious enough to interrupt a physician outside of office hours.
This will improve morale, elevate the level of service, and perhaps even speed interactions so that your office is able to handle a higher volume of in-office appointments. All of this is good for your patients, your staff, and your practice.
When physicians and nurses no longer have the onus of managing daily call volume and a portion of call-backs, they can focus on patient care and associated tasks, boosting productivity and potentially increasing the profitability of your practice as a result. In addition, calls that require no office visit can be handled by trained operators, streamlining your entire operation.
Comply with Government Standards
You might be worried about legal issues like HIPAA compliance, as well as OEV calls for Medicare. The good news is you can find answering services that specialize in working with medical practices and take these concerns as seriously as you do.
You’ll want to look for a HIPAA-compliant medical answering service, as well as an OEV call center provider that uses pre-approved scripts and can answer enrollee questions. This can save you time and money, as well as provide peace of mind that patient privacy and proper care are just as important to your answering service as they are to you.