CASE STUDY – IMPROVING PATIENT EXPERIENCE AND ACQUISITION
Patient texting and telehealth allowed this fertility clinic to master the patient experience while growing their practice, even during a pandemic.
When a clinic spends all day answering the phone, they can’t focus on what really matters: quality patient care and experience. In 2019, Northeastern Reproductive Medicine was so bogged down by phone calls that they struggled to onboard new patients, let alone provide the best care for existing patients.
In need of better patient communication, NRM found OhMD. “We were forced to change our process and having OhMD for texting and forms made it possible. The resolves were impressive,” says Lynn Goldman, the Practice Manager at NRM. OhMD texting allowed the clinic to put down the phone and respond to patients in a more swift and reliable manner. Patients no longer have to work their way through a phone tree just to leave a message. Instead, they text the practice and get a response within minutes.
“Communication has never been easier and patients like the convenience as well as the prompt responses.”– Sam, Billing Assistant and Benefits Administrator
Prior to utilizing texting for patient communication, staff were hand transcribing voicemails into notebooks and continuing the endless cycle of phone tag. On average, each nurse would spend 45 minutes simply listening to voicemails and another 30 minutes attempting to follow up with each patient, with little success. Even as potential patients were requesting initial consultations, it was challenging to get them booked with an appointment, inhibiting the clinic’s ability to grow. OhMD enabled NRM to focus on practice growth and a better patient experience. “Our practice is growing and the number of ‘cycle day ones’ has grown on a daily basis,” says Sam. “OhMD helps us connect to each patient.” Having free time away from the phone allows the clinic to devote more time to each patient and stay connected to them by text, personalizing the experience.
Across the organization, from billing to clinical staff, the ability to decrease calling and increase texting has improved efficiency and patient satisfaction. “Both during and after hours,” says Lynn Goldman, “I have been able to see when a patient needs help and can get the answer for them.” This immediacy of care is crucial for patients at NRM, especially in the field of fertility where patients undergo ongoing treatments, a lot of stress, and a very personal process.
OhMD not only improves the clinic’s relationship with their patients, but also strengthens communication within the team. With each patient interaction, 5 minutes is now saved. With dozens of interactions each day, NRM is saving 10-15 hours per day of valuable staff time. Now patient inquiries come into one platform that the entire team can access. Multiple staff can reply to different patient messages simultaneously, saving time and meeting demand. They can also pick up patient conversations where their colleagues leave off, enabling continuity of care and balanced workloads.
When COVID-19 hit, Northeastern Reproductive Medicine already had the tools in place with OhMD to continue to grow and serve their patients. Before, 6 out of 10 prospective patients ended up scheduling a consultation with NRM. In Mid-March, despite the pandemic, this number actually grew by 25% because NRM had an efficient process and effective tools to reach those patients in a timely manner.
COVID-19 encouraged NRM to transition to telemedicine using OhMD video visits which enabled secure communication from remote work locations. “This allowed us to continue to support our patients and reduce their anxiety in the face of the crisis,” says Lynn Goldman. Upon reopening, the clinic uses OhMD texting to operate a “parking lot waiting room”, where patients text from the parking lot and NRM replies when it’s safe for them to enter.
OhMD has helped NRM increase revenue by simplifying the payment process through texting. Being able to pay online through a link sent by text is a “huge patient satisfier”, says Sam. They’ve also generated more revenue by simplifying their patient acquisition process. Using texting, Lynn Goldman says, “We are able to promptly contact potential new patients when they inquire on our website and the process is much more streamlined.”