How to Improve Patient Experience with Healthcare Customer Service Outsourcing
The push toward value-based care. A constantly changing insurance marketplace. Intensifying competition from retail walk-in clinics. These are among the leading reasons why the mission to improve patient experience has taken on new importance for hospitals, clinics and other healthcare facilities seeking to preserve and grow their patient base.
And, while there are certainly operational adjustments that can be made to meet this goal, significant progress can be made by improving patient communications. From speeding up your response times to utilizing dedicated customer service reps with specific training in medical terminology, here are a few key ways that healthcare customer service outsourcing can help improve your patient experience.
How Healthcare Customer Service Outsourcing Helps Improve Patient Experience
Ensuring Prompt and High-Quality Customer Care
The easier you make life for your patients, the better their experience will be. Whether it’s paying their premiums, getting answers to claims questions, setting up appointments, or a variety of other services, setting up a mechanism for prompt and efficient service has become mission-critical for healthcare providers.
Healthcare customer service outsourcing gives you the means to accomplish this in a way that meets the highest standards of customer care (e.g., offering service that’s fast, friendly and geared to promote satisfaction). It also gives you the ability to offer that high level of care across all communications channels, from voice and email to text, online chat and even social media.
Promoting the Effectiveness and Well Being of Your On-Site Staff
Particularly for smaller facilities, it’s rarely convenient or effective to expect your on-site staff to handle the task of customer care in a satisfactory manner. Particularly if their primary task involves clinical care or medical administration, they’re not likely to be proficient in the finer points of customer service, which require the utilization of an almost entirely different skill set.
Tasking people with customer care who aren’t specifically trained for the task not only diminishes your power to offer a great patient experience, it also breeds dissatisfaction among employees. On the other hand, freeing your staff from the burden of customer care and letting them focus on their primary tasks helps promote employee satisfaction, which, in turn, often leads to customer (i.e., patient) satisfaction.
Keeping Pace with a Rapidly Changing Healthcare Environment
As insurers attempt to keep up with constantly shifting regulations, and the CMS continues to evolve its reimbursement guidelines to meet the goals of value-based care, questions from patients regarding what is and isn’t covered are only going to increase. Even aside from these challenges, there’s always a great deal of uncertainty around coverage, especially among people who don’t often utilize it.
Outsourcing is an effective way to address these questions promptly, effectively, and in a way that inspires patient confidence. As opposed to hiring temps or a part-time receptionist, outsourcing gives you access to professionals whose preferred specialty is healthcare. From CMS coverage to enrollment deadlines, they’re thoroughly knowledgeable and up to date on the info that matters to your patients.
Amplifying Your Specific Message to Better Meet Your Goals
Partnering with an established healthcare customer service outsourcing provider gives you access to customer care professionals who aren’t just experts in the medical field, but also in the practice of utilizing proven customer service techniques to meet your unique operational goals. They’re trained to communicate your specific message and values in a way that promotes patient satisfaction.
You’re still fully in control of your communications objectives, with the power to customize call scripts or oversee agent training as needed. Or, if you prefer, you can pass that task onto our team of expert communications strategists and educators. Whatever level of control you choose, you’ll get service that’s customized to improve patient experience within your unique niche and demographic.
Achieving Greater Versatility and Scalability
The constantly changing nature of healthcare regulations — and the never-ending questions that go along with them — requires a customer service plan that’s flexible, resilient, and above all versatile. Healthcare customer service outsourcing fits that bill by giving you the instant flexibility to easily handle a wide variety of patient services that extend far beyond basic customer care, including:
- Appointment scheduling and reminders
- Information requests and explanation of benefits (EOB)
- Medicare plan enrollment and open-enrollment inquiries
- Verification of insurance eligibility
- Claims management and updates
- Physician referrals and prescription assistance
- Rate change support
Outsourcing your customer care also covers business-side services like provider inquiries and product or service launch support. Sales and lead generation campaigns are also available, as well as additional support for sales and awareness campaigns, the administration of post-discharge patient satisfaction surveys and member acquisition, retention or win-back campaigns.
Scalability is particularly important in healthcare, as sudden shifts in regulatory or CMS policy can mean big changes to your product or service line. Setting up a system to provide the necessary messaging to communicate these changes can be a challenge — a challenge that healthcare customer service outsourcing helps meet with a network of top-notch agents that’s ready to be utilized on short notice.
Case Study: How a Major Healthcare Services Company Met a Unique Enrollment Challenge with Customer Service Outsourcing
Meeting Patient Privacy & Data Security Goals
In an era of widespread data breaches, it’s never been more important to keep customer data safe and secure. And this is of particular concern in healthcare, where regulations like the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) make protecting patients’ electronically transmitted data a legal requirement.
HIPAA and similar regulations directly impact customer service, which often involves the communication of sensitive data over the phone or via website communication. With healthcare customer service outsourcing, you can rest easy knowing that the communications channels you use are fully secure and compliant, and the reps using them are fully knowledgeable about all applicable compliance obligations.
Ready to Get Started with Healthcare Customer Service Outsourcing?
When you choose healthcare customer service outsourcing from Working Solutions, you get all of the above benefits, and more. We offer premium, on-demand customer care that’s specifically designed to meet your specific patient satisfaction goals as well as any additional sales and marketing objectives.
What’s more, we offer the ability to provide your customers with customer service that’s personalized, multilingual and available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Interested in learning more?
Contact us here to schedule your complimentary consultation with a Working Solutions expert and discover how we can help you ensure a great patient experience — today, tomorrow, and well into the future.Let's connect.
Chief Marketing Officer
Published on January 3, 2020
Published on January 3, 2020