The last decade has been an opportunity for every single type of industry to innovate and change; technology is ever-changing, and it is important that everyone keeps up to help their patients in the best and easiest ways possible.
Text messaging is the future of communication for all industries, and the healthcare industry is no exception. It is far easier to communicate directly to patients through text messages than through any other means; still, many places are choosing to live in the past and communicate solely through phone calls or email.
How is patient text messaging beneficial?
Choosing to communicate through text messages allows you to relay information directly and quickly to the patient. You can also use it to ask and receive questions, connect with patients, make and confirm appointments, send billing information, ask about a recent experience, and more.
1. Appointment Reminders
One of the most important reasons you should be communicating with patients through text messages is to remind them of their appointments. Far too often, patients simply forget to show up for important appointments. While you might find it easy to place a phone call, more and more people are not responding to phone calls from numbers they don’t know due to extreme volumes of spam calls.
Also, if you send these reminders by email, there’s a good chance that the client won’t read them in time. Text messaging, on the other hand, is instant and direct. 90% of text messages are opened within 3 seconds of delivery. Also, it is far easier to use text messaging for appointment reminders since you can set up automated services to send messages out for you.
2. Appointment Confirmations
Just as important as appointment reminders, sending out appointment confirmations are done extremely easily through SMS. Texts can be sent using an automated service, and can be sent with a request that the patient responds to whether they will attend their appointment or not.
This is a simple and quick way to increase patient attendance to their sessions. If the patient responds that they will not be able to attend the meeting, it’s then much easier to request the reason why they won’t be in attendance.
3. Patient Instructions
While some medical professionals may question whether or not they should send care instructions by text message, it’s the most effective way to ensure that the patient receives the instructions or a reminder of the instructions. Sending out a text shows that the doctor cares about the patient.
You can quickly explain the process of how your patient should be taking care of themselves and you can give reminders and explanations on how the patient should take their medicine. Texting is the best way to make sure the patient gets important information quickly.
4. Requesting Feedback
Texting is a great way to request feedback from your patients. You can directly text links over to all of the different platforms where the client can leave reviews; it’s an easy way for patients to leave their feedback as well as ask for any other information they might need. Most reviews are now written from mobile devices, so it doesn’t seem out of the ordinary at all to use SMS to request reviews.
Patients no longer want to wait around to fill out forms with information about how their visit went; they are far more likely to want to fill out a quick survey that’s sent over to them once they reach the comfort of their own home. There’s no reason to avoid the technology that allows patients to do things in their own time and in their own way. Texting is a secure way to contact your clients and using it to request a form be filled out or a review be posted is a way to embrace technological advances.
5. Delivering Results
It was once thought that important documents could only be sent over email; now, important attachments and documents can be sent directly through text. While some question if doctors texting will really become mainstream, instant communication is becoming more relevant and professional every day. Sending results from tests via text is the quickest way to get results to a client.
Ensure that your text is a HIPAA compliant text; be sensitive when sending over information that includes a client’s first name, last name, and other secure information. Generally, with permission from your patient, you should be able to use messaging to get all of your client’s results directly to their phone.
6. Payment Reminders
An essential part of running any business is finding a way to tactfully inform your customers of their bill and request payment. Almost all payments are now remitted via smartphone, so it’s completely normal to send out requests to phones over text.
Use this modern method of communication to reduce bad debts and get payments from your customers.
It’s time that all industries embrace the future and use text messaging for their clients. The healthcare industry would have huge benefits by using text messages. It’s the quickest and easiest way to communicate directly with patients; there’s no reason to be stuck in the past and rely on email or phone to communicate with them.
Let us take a look and see how we can help your business send out automated appointment reminders, billing information, surveys, and more!