Wouldn’t it be great if your patient could book their appointment to your clinic online anytime, anywhere, register automatically, see their doctor with minimum wait time and receive follow-up reminders? If you were the patient, wouldn’t you enjoy the convenience offered by this contactless clinic?
Today, patients prefer healthcare providers that offer digital convenience, such as online appointment booking (Accenture, 2019). Safe distancing protocols have accelerated a “Contactless Takeover” that’s changing how businesses operate. For example, digital food menus, contactless payment solutions and QR code scanning for safe entry have become the norm. As people grow increasingly comfortable with a contactless way of life, patients expect no different from healthcare providers.
Contactless clinics not only ensure safer physical visits, but also increase the scope for automating work. High volume and tight margin practices can particularly benefit from automations by going contactless. Since a bulk of patient interaction occurs at your clinic’s front desk, why not run a contactless front desk that automates work for staff and provides patient convenience?
Let patients book their visits online—anytime, anywhere
When your patient is unwell, the last thing they want is to endure a long wait time to see the doctor. Struggling to get through a busy telephone line to book an appointment is also a pain point for many patients. Instead, let them book their appointment online in one click of a button, anytime, anywhere. Online appointment booking makes your clinic more accessible to new patients. Let them find your clinic online and book directly from your clinic’s website or social media pages.
Register new patients automatically
Is your patient using pen and paper to register at your clinic? Is your front desk doing double work: collecting filled registration forms and copying patient data into your clinic software? Automate workflows by inviting patients to register online using QR code instead. Thanks to API, a clinic management platform such as Plato can integrate with specific data platforms to automate work. For example, autofill your patients’ digital registration form with their government-verified biodata, before receiving their accurate profile details directly in your Plato. Patients enjoy less form-filling and shorter wait times in your clinic. Meanwhile, your front desk staff avoids manual data entry that’s error-prone and you build accurate patient profiles in your clinic system.
Let patients review digital consent forms in comfort
Since a consent form is a contract, patients should review its details carefully before giving their informed consent. Let patients peruse their consent form in the comfort of home. Once the form is electronically signed, your patient can submit the form—with date and time stamp for data integrity—directly to your clinic software. Digital consent forms are not only convenient for the patient, but also offer clinics greater accuracy, efficiency and clarity compared to paper forms (Health Europa, 2019). A study by St John et al. (2017) found that digital procedure-specific forms improve the quality and consistency of consent documentation compared to handwritten surgical consent forms.
Pay safely from anywhere
Regular payment terminals pose as a vector for disease spread and are error-prone. Your staff must manually enter payment in your clinic software and again in your terminal. A typo today leads to an accounting headache tomorrow. After your patient hands their credit card to your staff for insertion into the terminal, your staff prints a receipt for your patient to sign using a common pen. Finally, your staff returns the card back to your patient. The entire process involves multiple shared touchpoints. To reduce contact with shared surfaces during the COVID-19 pandemic, more businesses have taken up contactless payment terminals. According to Mastercard’s global consumer survey, 75% in Asia Pacific want to continue using contactless payment solutions for convenience, even after the pandemic is over (Partel, 2020).
The PlatoPay Terminal is integrated with Plato to eliminate billing errors at your clinic: create a bill in your clinic management platform, see the charge automatically display on the PlatoPay Terminal, then let patients pay with a tap of their card. Better yet, go beyond in-person payments with “Card not Present” PlatoPay. In Plato, clinics can securely hold their patients’ credit cards on file for free, so local and overseas patients can settle rejected claims and finance their teleconsult by paying remotely.
Improve continuous care
Do you want to improve patient outcomes, but find it a challenge when they don’t follow their care plan? Extend your patient-centric care by sharing care plans and follow-up schedules with patients. Help your patients take greater control of their care and combat medical misinformation—give them credible notes to reference for better care adherence. Any time they are in doubt, your patient can read their shared notes to precisely recall what was discussed in visits.
Patients may also forget about their follow-ups or medicine refills, especially if they lead busy lives. Thankfully, recalls serve as an effective tool to improve continuous care. Recalls are reminder messages that are emailed or texted to patients who are due for a visit or medicine refill, inviting them to book their appointment. Clinics should pair their recall message with their online appointment booking link, so patients can instantly schedule their next visit and stay committed to care.
ReferencesAccenture. (2019). Digital Health Consumer Survey. https://www.accenture.com/_acnmedia/pdf-102/accenture-digital-health-consumer-survey-singapore.pdf