05/10/2018 in Blog
Online appointment scheduling has become an expectation for healthcare consumers in the digital age. A recent study into patient engagement by Accenture estimates, “by the end of 2019, 66% of US health systems will offer digital self-scheduling and 64% of patients will book appointments digitally, delivering $3.2 billion in value and a competitive boost for health systems.”
When exploring consumers’ perceptions about making an appointment with a physician, Healthgrades revealed important insights about their expectations for convenience and quick access. For instance:
Consumers would trade the convenience of having a physician nearby (32%) for the convenience of online scheduling (67%) by more than two-to-one.
Almost one-third of consumers see physicians that offer online appointment scheduling as more appealing and note that this offering would increase their likelihood of making an appointment.
Consumers who use online scheduling tend to be younger, better educated, and schedule more appointments for themselves and others.
When choosing an online scheduling partner, it’s important to consider the capabilities, functionality, and available integrations with your current software. Ideally, an online appointment scheduling system would sync with a practice management system or clinical scheduling software to offer a prospect patient available times for each provider. Sometimes, there are difficulties with software integrations, and the staff has to manually enter the requested appointment into the practice management system’s schedule. This creates frustrations for both patients and staff in the event that the requested time is unavailable, and both parties spend time following-up and working through the schedule, eliminating the intended convenience of online booking.
Fortunately, Healthgrades’ appointment scheduling solution is now available in the Epic App Orchard. Now, hospitals and health systems using Epic are able to seamlessly sync schedules and appointment information, and provide real-time booking for patients on Healthgrades.com.
Healthgrades has already enabled consumers to book online appointments with providers at hospitals and health systems across the country, including Edward-Elmhurst Health and Ochsner Health System.
“This integration will help streamline this process for hospitals using the Epic platform,” said Nabeel Meghji, Senior Vice President, Product Management, Healthgrades. “It also allows consumers to easily book appointments with their providers while using Healthgrades.com and then connects that inventory and booking process with a hospital’s appointment system already in use.”
Read about the new integration here, access Healthgrades’ appointment scheduling solution in Epic App Orchard, and learn more about online appointment scheduling as an emerging trend on the Healthgrades for Hospitals blog.