The Doctor Will Text You Now

I recently missed a call in the middle of a busy day from my physician’s office, which had called to tell me that my son’s appointment time had been changed from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. the next day.

By the time I checked my messages, the doctor’s office was closed and I had to cancel the appointment the next day as I could not make the 11 a.m. time.

The point of this story is that in today’s connected world, the best way to get hold of me in the middle of the day is via an SMS message or email.

I prefer to make appointments on the Web and would like to have an online chat session with someone if I have basic questions around appointments, medication etc. My healthcare provider does not have most of these capabilities, even though they could be enabled via technology today.

Avaya works with some of the leading healthcare providers in the world. We provide technology that allows a customer to start the interaction from a web chat session, move to an automated interaction with an interactive voice response system, and ultimately talk to an agent–with the entire context of the conversation (my heath ID, and details about the web chat/IVR) made available to them immediately for a more personalized experience.

Healthcare providers can reach out to patients/family via the preferred communication mechanism (SMS, email, telephone call etc.). These messages can automate the process of collecting vitals (blood sugar readings, weight, etc.) to better manage chronic diseases, or provide post-visit follow-up to prevent re-admissions, automate collection of co-pays etc.

I hope my healthcare provider embraces these technologies to help me communicate with them at my convenience, via the mechanism of my choice. In my case, if my providers had sent me an email about the time change for the appointment, I would have responded immediately, requesting a different time that worked for me.

Happier me = more loyal customer.