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10.14.05 Issue #188  
   
E-Recall: Cost-effective, Time-efficient


Sally McKenzie, CEO
The McKenzie Company
sallymck@mckenziemgmt.com

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Recall. You remember, it’s the system that is the number one moneymaker for your practice and the most often overlooked or ignored. Some of you see it as dialing through the drudgery to keep the schedule full and the doctor happy. Others rank this task right up there with making delinquent account calls. Then you have those who bubble over with enthusiasm about how practical their recall system is because Barb, the Hygienist, makes as many calls as she can whenever she has a cancellation or no show, which is pretty regularly – surprise, surprise. And how much are you paying her an hour to make those calls? Who’s counting? Which is my point, exactly. No one is counting or collecting for that matter when there are holes in the schedule.

While a few have recall down to a moneymaking science, too many practices keep it firmly on the back burner until production is teetering between troubling and downright alarming. Oftentimes, doctors and teams perceive they don’t have the time or resources to invest in an effective system. Interestingly, there is a 21st century answer to this age-old problem. It’s e-recall.

Your patients are wired. They are connected to the Internet, email, text messaging, personal digital assistants (PDA), MP3 players and the list goes on and on. They are using technology to simplify their lives; tell them where they are supposed to be; stay connected with family, friends, work, school; and help them manage the numerous demands of day-to-day life. It’s that technology that could very well be your best answer to rebuilding a fledgling recall system and getting practice production firmly on track.

I’m particularly impressed with the e-recall services provided through UAppoint. This system is truly patient and practice friendly. It allows practices to quickly, efficiently, and cost effectively remind patients of upcoming appointments, without ever picking up the phone. It’s the no pain, plenty of gain answer to those who dread dealing with tedium of recall or feel they don’t have the human resources to park someone on the landline for a few hours a day.

UAppoint services, which are fully HIPAA-compliant and integrate seamlessly with your existing practice management software, enable you to easily incorporate a new email reminder service for patients that are due for upcoming appointments. Through the service, your office is able to contact the patient via email two weeks in advance of the appointment and again three days prior to the scheduled visit. One of the best features is that the patient can confirm they will make the appointment with a single click on either reminder. For the few patients who do not electronically confirm, the practice has a manageable list of patients to follow-up with by phone, which can be done two days before the appointment.

Another nice component of the system is the electronic appointment card or E-Card that is sent to the patient detailing their scheduled appointment. The patient just saves the date on their electronic calendar on their computer and their personal digital assistant (PDA). And you too are “wired in” to the patient’s electronic time-management system. 

Your patients don’t have time for phone tag anymore than you do. In fact, a recent study by Reachon.com surveyed 10,000 people and found that 85% prefer communicating by email rather than by phone. It’s fast, efficient, and the vast majority of patients access it regularly. And speaking of efficiency, how much more productive could you be if you knew that 85% of your patients would be in the chair at the designated time and your business team could focus their efforts on shoring up that remaining 15%. E-recall - no phone calls, no waiting on hold, no telephone tag – it’s “E-fficient”and “E-ffective.”

For more information on e-mail Scheduling go here

If you have any question or comments, please email Sally McKenzie at sallymck@mckenziemgmt.com.

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