Healthcare is a “local” business. In most cases, medical practices and healthcare organizations have each one of their locations manage their patient communications locally.
Each location typically has its own local phone number for patients to remember and call as well.
The front desk at each location handles scheduling (new appointments, recalls, rescheduling, cancellations, follow up appointments).
While the patients are in the clinic, the front desk also handles patient admission, discharge, transfers.
In addition to this, the front desk answers and routes incoming calls about prescriptions, medical billing as well.
A centralized healthcare call center essentially just centralizes these functions to a single team.
The centralized call center typically handles all incoming calls, makes all necessary outbound calls, and handles the majority of scheduling activities.
The team in itself doesn’t necessarily have to be co-located. It is, however, important that they laser focus on these functions.
Centralizing your healthcare call center alleviates much of these front desk tasks and allows the front desk to do what’s most important – improve patient flow and patient experience while the patients are in the clinic.
Generally, a centralized call center team is located away from the offices. However, in our opinion, that doesn’t necessarily have to be the case. As long as they are not pulled into the clinic activities and can focus solely on their tasks without in-clinic patient related distractions, it could work just as well.
It is important, however, to ensure that the same processes and workflows are followed by the entire centralized call center team.
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