Remind Me What the Value in Appointment Reminders is Again?
As Warren Buffett said, “Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.”
Appointment reminders have somehow made the “must purchase” list for healthcare organizations and yet, even with reminders, missed appointments is a 150 billion-dollar problem in the US, healthcare is facing an accountability epidemic. The initial idea behind appointment reminders is great but the healthcare tech industry still seems to be missing the mark on what patients want.
Increasingly we have been hearing that patients find appointment reminders “annoying” or “frustrating” and I can relate. As patients’ schedules get busier and their access to information for either self-diagnosis or to find care faster elsewhere is steadily increasing. Your reminders have two audiences; for the person who remembered their appointment, it may feel offensive. For the person who forgot, it’s just another alert that they need to do something – call the practice to reschedule, change other existing plans, prep for the appointment (the list is probably longer than any of us realize) so it is no surprise that they are perceived as annoying and frustrating. There is no real value to either of these audiences. If appointment reminders are still a must have, then they have to get better to make the value clear to all patients. The first step is to figure out what is most important to your patients and find solutions that offer those benefits. Is it getting an earlier appointment, a shorter in-office wait time, more time with your providers, what do your patients value?
At QueueDr, this peaked our interest so we have started looking at no-show rates after QueueDr is live and have found that we are cutting no-show rates by 50%.