If you view your medical answering service as a necessary evil for your practice, clinic, or healthcare facility, then one of two things are clear. Either you have the wrong perspective about the role they play, or you have the wrong answering service.
When you have the right medical answering service handling your calls, they're an asset to your operation. Equally true is that the wrong answering service is a liability.
When a Medical Answering Service is a Liability
Does your answering service frustrate your patients? Maybe your answering service is rude, places patients on hold for a long time, or rushes through the call.
Does your answering service frustrate you? Perhaps they don't take accurate messages, fail to listen to your patients, or reach the wrong on-call person.
Are you concerned your answering service hurts your relationship with your patients? A poorly run or poorly staffed answering service will actually motivate your patients to switch healthcare providers. Few healthcare providers want to lose a patient, and most do whatever they can to retain them. Is your answering service effectively working to thwart your objective of providing quality healthcare?
Handling a call poorly can sometimes be even worse than not answering the call in the first place. If you feel that way about your answering service, then they're a liability. You'd be better off without them. Certainly you'd be better off by hiring a quality answering service.
Just as a poor answering service is a liability, a quality medical answering service is an asset.
When a Medical Answering Service is an Asset
Do your patients ever complement you on your answering service? It can happen. In fact, if you have the right answering service, it should. When it does, your medical answering service is an asset to your operation. Here are some of the ways this can happen.
The staff at a quality medical answering service is both professional and personable. That's what you want and what your callers expect. When done correctly, your answering service is an extension of what happens in your office or clinic. Regardless if your patients are present in your facility or calling over the phone after hours, they should receive the same empathetic, caring communication.
This means that your answering service answers calls in a timely manner, greets your patients pleasantly, and ends each call positively. In between, they help your patient achieve what they called to do. Your medical answering service may take a message, schedule an appointment, or give out information. If the call is an urgent medical situation, they'll reach your appropriate on-call person or direct the patient to the ER, in accordance with your instructions.
Just as you became a healthcare provider to make a positive difference in people's lives, your medical answering service can be—and should be—an extension of that. When they are, they're an asset.
If your answering service is a liability to your operation by irritating patients and driving them to switch providers, then you have the wrong answering service. It's time to find the right one. Select a professional medical answering service that can be a true asset to your operation. They'll delight your patients and help foster the good relationship you've developed with them.When you have the right medical answering service they're an asset that helps you attract new patients and keep the ones you have.
Learn how medical answering service from MedConnectUSA can help your practice, clinic, or facility. Then get a free quote to discover how affordable their healthcare communication services are. Peter Lyle DeHaan is a freelance writer and call center authority.