The acceptance of consumer technology and effective communication can be used develop an appointment reminder strategy. A successful protocol can reduce missed appointments and help your patients stick to their treatment plans. You can reach patients by:
- Adopting mobile phone based reminder communications
According to the Pew Research Center, 91% of adults in the United States own cell phones. Therefore, the most sure fire way to reach your patients is on this device. Cell phones, are often in close proximity to their owners, and the message can be delivered promptly.
- Using multiple channels to communicate with patients
The benefit of communicating on multiple channels ensures the message is received correctly. Many cell phones and smart phones, have lines multiple ways of displaying information. These include email, text and voice messages. By using multiple channels, patients will have multiple reference points of information.
- Communicating with patients in their preferred language
Although English is the primary language spoken in the United States, when it comes to matters of health, effective communication is paramount. Patients who speak English as a second language can benefit from information communicated in their native tongue. There is less likelihood for misunderstanding when one can confirm the date, time, and location of their appointment.
- Reaching out to patients at an ideal time of day
Receiving messages during the day, or in the early evening increases chances that the message will be heard, and the patient will confirm receipt of the message. Messages sent too early or too late in the day have a higher chance of being ignored or forgotten.