Lesson 13 – What does a referral coordinator need to do their jobs?

A referral coordinator needs a system to monitor and manage referring provider originated referrals and the latest status of each patient referred.

You can do these using our hipaa compliant healthcare crm software and patient engagement software quite easily.

  1. Sign up for all referral sources

    Make it the path of least resistance for referring partners to send you referrals. Whether they choose to send you referrals
    – directly from their EMR to your fax
    – using your Direct address
    – faxing you directly
    – using any other 3rd party referral software.

    Accept referrals from ALL sources. Manage them with our referral management software.

  2. Use a dedicated fax number for referrals

    You need access to referral faxes all the time. Get a dedicated fax number JUST for referrals. As you know, your practice gets a LOT of faxes each day. You do NOT want to miss out on any incoming referral fax.

    The only way to do this is to get a dedicated fax number. (our referral management software includes that)

    Our preference is to use a cloud based fax number. This way you can send/receive referral faxes right from your computer and don’t have to be tied to your fax machine at the office.

  3. Get a dedicated email address for referrals

    Trust us – we have worked with several medical practices and they tend to have a “common” inbox / email address.

    This is a recipe for confusion and disaster. We have seen it happen each time.
    Sooner or later, all emails, spam etc start coming to that one email address and it becomes an email swamp.

    Do yourself a favor and get a dedicated email address for referrals. e.g. referrals@yourpracticename.com

  4. Use a dedicated phone number for referrals

    Again – the same concept as with email address and fax number. Get a dedicated phone number. Our healthcare customers tend to get a lot of practices that also call in to refer patients. Have a dedicated line so that the referring partners know which number to call to send referrals and to get updates on their referrals.

    Our referral management software gives you one.

    Do not make the referring partners jump through various hoops to get updates on referrals.

  5. Get a patient CRM – even a simple CRM will do

    If you do not use a patient or healthcare CRM , even a simple spreadsheet that captures the following will help:

    Facility Name  — where the patient came from
    Location — which location the patient came from
    Referring Physician with NPI — this is crucial and inbound agents should always capture this info
    Phone Number — nice to have the referring location phone number
    Facility Fax Number — if possible
    Patient Name — of course 🙂
    DOB — of course 🙂
    Patient Phone no. — at a minimum, this will help your call center to call patient back to find out additional information
    If Referral, call from — whether patient called after being referred or the referring physician called directly to get an appointment.

    Trust us – being diligent about collecting this information really does help. This at least gives you a reason to get in touch with the provider.. Hey, open more doors !!

    Maintain daily log of this information..However, do keep in mind that a spreadsheet gets hairy and messy pretty soon.

  6. Daily appts created report from front desk or your EMR

    You are going to need this every day. Your front desk or call center is tasked with capturing the referring physician for each patient. You need to be up to date with each day’s patient source.

    If it came from a referring physician, you need to let your physician liaisons know immediately. They need this super crucial information.

    Our referral management software helps you do that with 1 click.

  7. Use a satisfaction survey tool / software

    You are going to have to learn directly from the patients about their experience with your practice.
    You are also going to have to learn directly from your referring partners about their experience with your practice.
    Doing this manually over emails is hard to do and manage. Get a satisfaction survey that allows you to email and send SMS. It makes your life easier. Survey your patients seen daily and survey your referring partners monthly.

    If you want to use our survey tool, use our patient reviews software.

  8. Get a DIRECT address

    You probably already know that each EMR can communicate with other EMRs in this world via DIRECT messaging. It is an “email” address that any process or physician can have.

    The only people that can send you messages are ones with DIRECT addresses. Any emails sent from an EMR goes via DIRECT messaging and a referral or patient record can be sent directly from any EMR to another EMR via DIRECT messaging.

    Get a DIRECT address (it is dirt cheap) from DIRECTTRUST.

  9. Update your referral contact information in NPPES

    Keep in mind that just because you have set up all these dedicated channels – it doesn’t mean that the world or the medical community knows about it 🙂

    There’s one easy way to announce this information to the medical community.
    Update your fax, email, phone, DIRECT information on the CMS/NPPES website.

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