Digital platforms for booking medical appointments

Digital platforms in healthcare

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Photo: Rami Al-zayat

The world around us is becoming increasingly technology-driven. Healthcare facilities around the globe are working hard to incorporate different technological tools and advancements to better their practices and reach their patients easily. Nowadays, different digital platforms are being used more and more for medical appointments. We will explore these digital platforms, how they work, and their overall benefits for healthcare providers in this article.

Appointment scheduling with the use of digital platforms

Generally speaking, in healthcare, patient scheduling is one of the major and most important elements in healthcare and part of daily work for many healthcare professionals and front office staff. However, with increased patients and waiting lists over the last couple of years, around the world, many practices have started seeking alternative, easier solutions to appointment scheduling and management. Thus came the increased usage of digital platforms that are constantly getting improved. With capable online scheduling tools as well as appointment management software, patient scheduling becomes greatly simplified.

Through the usage of these digital platforms, medical staff can manage appointments and schedules easily and be more efficient. How does it work? Well, once a patient reaches out through these digital platforms, they automatically activate the flow of communications through the different channels. These channels for booking or rescheduling medical appointments can be, for example, Mail, Whatsapp, and SMS, among others. With the start of communication with the patients, these digital tools offering confirmation service of medical appointments can also allow patients to respond and confirm or decline for example.

What are the benefits of digital platforms for medical appointments

We have covered what it means to use digital platforms for medical appointments as well as how they work. Because these digital platforms and the ways in which they are being used are constantly improving, a great number of different benefits appeared from the usage of these digital platforms. Let us take a closer look at all of the major benefits of the usage of digital platforms for medical appointments.

Greater convenience

Patients value convenience. They seek to reach healthcare services in the fastest way possible as well as the most convenient one. Therefore, digital platforms allow patients to get in touch or stay in touch with their healthcare service providers easier. Not only do they allow for an easier flow of communication but they also provide convenience because patients can schedule appointments without having to call or visit but simply use their digital devices and do it from the comfort of their homes.

24h availability

Without the usage of digital platforms, patients have to wait and book their appointments or reschedule them during a clinic’s opening hours. This all changes with the usage of digital platforms. Online scheduling through the usage of apps such as Whatsapp is not only convenient but also available to you 24/7. So, in case you happen to have something that interferes with the schedule, you can easily and quickly reschedule it. Patients are also able to check doctors' availability as well as schedule, shifts, and so on.

Reduction of empty appointment slots

One of the more problematic issues for many healthcare service providers is missed appointments. Not only do they waste time by they also mess up various schedules. In turn, waiting lists get bigger and other patients who could have filled up that empty slot many now need to wait for another one longer. However, digital platforms definitely change this issue. With digital platforms, healthcare service providers can identify canceled appointments or reschedules, and provide an alternative solution for the patient in question as well as fill in the created gap with another patient. Digital services focused on the management of medical blocks are excellent at notifying and re-scheduling the patient. No phone calls are needed. The patient is quickly notified through the usage of various digital platforms such as SMS, e-mails, or apps such as Whatsapp. The new information is readily available to patients and they can see it right away.

Effective information management

Speaking of information, what digital platform also enables healthcare service providers is the ability to make managing patient information more efficient. A healthcare service provider can create a single point from which patient information can be saved as well as updated and changed. So, this means that patient health records management can be included in online appointment scheduling systems. More efficient analysis and better management of patients' files and medical appointments throughout their healthcare journey are made easier and more efficient. In addition to this, with such usage of digital platforms, administrative tasks, and answering phone calls are reduced which helps the front office staff or other medical staff that was in charge of this. This means that digital platforms also enable healthcare systems around the world to achieve a reduction in administrative work.

Scheduling with the use of digital platforms - Conclusion

In summary, the world of healthcare is in constant need of new, innovative solutions. This is nowadays more clear than ever. Digital platforms are being used extensively and both patients and medical personnel including the front office staff as well as doctors are seeing a ton of benefits.

Patients today value convenience greatly. Digital platforms offer convenience as one of their major benefits. Furthermore, as mentioned above, 24/7 availability, reduced staff overload, better and more effective information management, options for rescheduling, and notifying of canceled appointments on time all play a vital role in the further use of digital platforms for medical appointments.

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