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Physician Answering Services: Helping Both Doctors and Patients

Date Added: March 11, 2010 11:31:57 AM
Author: Sue McCrossin
Category: Business & Economy

It’s fair to say that almost all physicians and medical practitioners have an established way of handling all patient calls after hours and when their offices are closed, but it also should be mentioned that not all of their methods work. Physicians who work independently or those who own private practices often use automated answering services that direct patients to voice mail systems and provide a number for emergency use only. This isn’t always the best solution. It’s Friday night: imagine that you’re a patient experiencing a lot of discomfort. When you call your doctor or pharmacy with a quick question, you’re directed to voicemail or another automated system. It’s imaginable that you’d be feeling let down, disappointed, and perhaps even inclined to seek treatment elsewhere. But to be fair, it’s unrealistic to expect a doctor to be on call 24 hours a day. So is there a solution that can provide better and more convenient service to patients and at the same time allow a physician to perform his/her duties and grow their practice? Physician answering services feature live operators who are available 24/7 to answer all patient calls, queries, and forward calls accurately to doctors. This service is becoming increasingly common, because it saves physicians valuable time, prevents constant disruptions, and keeps data and an ongoing record of all calls received. Nowadays, advanced technologies are employed to make physician practice more efficient, such as online appointment scheduling software and online on call software, as well as internet portals to retrieve information. Plus Scheduling Software is available to streamline your office appointment system while allowing your physician answering service to manage schedules and make appointments for you easily and efficiently. Other services include advanced message delivery options like SMS delivery to your cell phone in case of emergency. SMS servers forward entire text messages with a two digit request for a reply, and when the reply is received, your answering service knows the critical message was acknowledged. Most importantly, physician answering service professionals handle calls in the way you’d prefer and follow forwarding guidelines you’ve set—you have the option of dictating the way you’d like things done. This will inspire confidence in all of your patients and customers, as well as enhance your own professional appearance. Affordable, reliable, and professional physician answering services are what medical care providers need, as they’re in a different situation then most professionals. The health and lives of others are in your hands. This responsibility can cause a lot of stress, as the physician feels the need to care for his or her patients 24/7 but cannot be physically there for them. Finding the balance of working too many hours and not having enough time for yourself and providing your patients the care that they need can be difficult. That’s where a physician answering service can step in and give you some peace of mind. They’ll connect you with the urgent calls and screen others so you can enjoy the time with your family and not worry about your patients. Nowadays, physicians are not only focused on providing the best care for their patients but also running their practices as well-functioning businesses. This means that they take an interest in providing the best service as well, realizing that patients who are attended to are likely to deliver more positive reviews and recommend their services elsewhere—gaining physicians new patients. If you’re a physician or hospital administrator, consider live operators and a physician answering service, at least after hours to increase the satisfaction of your patients and enhance your image as a medical professional. Erica Ronchetti is a freelance writer for All Voice Communications, a provider of physician answering service using professional agents and advanced message delivery options. Find out more about our doctors answering services & what All Voice can do for you by visiting
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