By Mary Tackbary, National Director, Health Plans at MyHealthDirect
For the last few years, the healthcare industry has started to embrace self-scheduling technology. In order to improve efficiency and stand out in a rapidly evolving and highly competitive marketplace, the smartest health organizations are providing digital systems and tools for patients to seek, book, change and cancel their own care appointments. Based on an Accenture survey, 77 percent of patients view self-scheduling as an important offering, and by the year 2019, nearly 66 percent of health systems will have adopted the practice.
The writing is on the wall, self-service technology has infiltrated nearly every other vertical than healthcare – and the pressure is mounting. Consumer expectations are demanding self-service options, and change is coming. The approach of “we’ve always done it this way and it works well enough” is not going to cut it much longer.
As the Accenture study indicates, we are on the verge of a tipping point, where self-service technology will become the norm for healthcare in a matter of just a few years. Healthcare organizations that plan for this new future and prepare their systems now will find success when the inflection happens. Those who wait will suffer the consequences of poor member engagement and lower quality scores, with the added costs of trying to play catch up late in the game.
Here is a closer look at the top four reasons why now is the time to adopt self-scheduling technology.
Healthcare plans and providers have been making great strides over the last few years at incorporating new technology and providing online services to drive member satisfaction. Making them actionable with self-scheduling is the next step to truly differentiate them with employer groups. With 77 percent of consumers noting their preference to have the option for online appointment booking, now is the time to make scheduling easy and meet consumer demand.
About The Author
Mary is the National Director, Health Plans at MyHealthDirect. She brings more than 20 years of healthcare experience and previously held leadership positions at Eliza Corporation, LexisNexis and Change Healthcare. She is a subject matter expert in member engagement and quality for government programs (HEDIS/STARS). Mary is a RN, MSN from the University of Cincinnati.