What Are the Business Benefits of a Medical Answering Service?

What Are the Business Benefits of a Medical Answering Service?

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When people think of a medical answering service, the focus tends to be on patient care and service delivery. In other words, a doctor’s office might contract with an answering service to ensure that patients can always reach someone if they need help for a medical emergency. But what about the business side of things? Are there business benefits that come with hiring a medical answering service?

Absolutely. Our healthcare system is a for-profit system. That means medical offices need to pay attention to the business side of things. Otherwise, they go out of business. So it is fair to consider a medical answering service from a business perspective. And when you do, you discover several things.

1. An Answering Service Increases Patient Satisfaction

Patient satisfaction is one of the most important metrics when it comes to the business side of medicine. Unsatisfied patients will not come back for subsequent visits. They will go elsewhere. On the other hand, satisfied patients will return time and again. They will be easier patients to work with as well. 

Survey data consistently shows that people don’t like making phone calls and talking to machines. They do not like automated answering systems that lead them through complicated menus without giving them an opportunity to speak to a human being. But when a human receptionist or operator answers, things are different.

One of the best things a private practice owner could do for their business is to make sure real human beings are answering the phones 24/7. As such, a medical answering service could improve a clinician’s business by improving patient satisfaction. 

2. An Answering Service Increases Efficiency

A medical answering service does not need to be limited to handling calls only after office hours. A service can manage every call it comes in, freeing up office staff to concentrate on other things. This can lead to greater operational efficiency.

Imagine receptionists whose administrative tasks are not interrupted every few minutes by the phone. A receptionist’s train of thought is not derailed five or six times while they are trying to complete another task. Likewise for office managers – and even LPNs in smaller offices where nurses do double duty.

Every member of the clinician’s team is more efficient when they can concentrate on the most important tasks at hand. Answering phone calls is important, but it can be distracting for certain staff members. Alleviating them of the responsibility eliminates the distractions. 

3. An Answering Service Saves Money

For so many medical offices, contracting with a medical answering service is a dollars and cents consideration. When they add up all of the costs of maintaining an on-site call center in subsequent staff, they realize that contracting with a company like ours is more cost-effective.

A service provider such as Apello provides all of the fully trained professionals who will answer an office’s calls. In addition to this, the service provider maintains its own call center along with the necessary equipment and technology. The icing on the cake is the ability to add services above and beyond simple call answering. For example, we can make appointments on behalf of a medical office. We can also send automated reminders about patient appointments.
There are plenty of valid reasons to contract with a medical answering service. On the patient side of things, clinicians obviously want their patients taken care of at all hours of the night and day. On the business side, it is really about running a better and more efficient operation capable of achieving higher rates of patient satisfaction.

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