Keep patients informed and engaged throughout COVID-19 by utilizing EHR data analytics and communicating with patients new, current and former
A majority of EHR data analytics capabilities are geared toward you, the doctor. This includes a number of communication options to keep patients in the know during a health crisis. Staying in touch with patients even after the storm has passed provides benefits as well. Your electronic health record system can help you keep in touch with patients in a variety of situations and conditions, providing this type of value while strengthening the doctor-patient relationship.
Using EHR data amalytics for effective patient communications
There are a few EHR tools that enable you to stay in touch with your patients:
A real patient portal — By offering patients openness with your office’s records, they’re able to be an active partner in their own health and wellness. A patient portal also enables them to easily fill out necessary forms and schedule and reschedule appointments, saving your staff time.
Email capabilities — Unless you need to get in touch with a patient right away, email is a great way to make contact at a time that is most convenient for them. In fact, one study found that one in four patients wished their doctors would communicate via email.
Text message — EZ Texting’s 2019 Report reveals that one-half of consumers check their cell phones at least five times every hour. That makes this form of communication one that fits into their everyday life, and more than two-thirds (69%) prefer to stay in touch with businesses by text.
When to communicate
Just as it is important to know how to communicate, it’s equally as imperative to know when to communicate. What times can have the most impact?
When patients are new — Have you ever done business with a new company, only to have them contact you shortly thereafter and let you know that they’re there if you have any questions or concerns? When you do this as a health care provider, it tells new patients that you’re available to them.
When patients are no longer active — Though it might seem like reaching out to inactive patients would be a waste of time, the opposite is true. It reaffirms that you’re there for them whenever they’re ready, making them feel more comfortable to return.
When you have a new or change in service — In your communication, talk about who the service might be good for or what conditions it can relieve or treat. Encourage patients to share this information with others who could potentially benefit, increasing your referral base.
When there is a local community-wide (or larger) health issue — COVID-19 proves that being able to communicate about this type of issue is a must, which you can utilizing your EHR data analytics. Even if it is as simple as providing links to reputable online resources.
Also inform patients as to any updates that impact their ability to treat with your office. Let them know that the Department of Homeland Security has declared chiropractic an essential service, providing a link to the memo that confirms it. Not only does this reinforce that you’re there for them, but it also reaffirms that chiropractic is an essential part of their health care plan during a crisis and moving forward.
Christina DeBusk is a freelance writer who specializes in content related to natural health and wellness, personal development and small-business marketing. She can be contacted through ChristinaMDeBusk.com.