Apr
18

Sharing Electronic Contact Information

Posted April 18, 2017 in Tea Buzz

In this ultra media-saturated world, it’s no surprise some patients are keeping their personal contact information on lock down. People may be leery of sharing their electronic contact information for a variety of reasons: concern over identity theft, an effort to lessen the constant onslaught of messages, or simply not wanting or needing the services offered in those communications.

There are, however, many benefits to collecting and sharing this contact information for both patients and healthcare organizations. Here’s the download on why it’s important for hospitals and health systems to collect emails and phone numbers, and also why it’s important for patients to provide those details.

 

For healthcare organizations, collecting electronic contact information from the patient results in:

  • Stronger brand awareness

Today’s healthcare consumers are busy. And tech savvy. They’re checking email and text messages more than ever before. They do still receive mail at home, but in order to stay competitive and keep your services top-of-mind, you’ll want to make sure your messages are not just in their mailbox, but also their inbox.

  • More engaged patients, and higher conversion rates

Inciting action in consumers requires several touch points – across multiple mediums. You likely have your patients’ physical addresses, so you can reach them with direct mail. That’s a great initial touch point, but getting email addresses and phone numbers so you can reach your patients with emails and text messages as second and third touch points is crucial to converting new patients and keeping current ones engaged.

  • Better loyalty to your organization

Need to remind a patient about their upcoming appointment? Send out an IVR phone call or text. Want to follow up and thank them for attending that hip seminar? Send an email. Having email addresses and phone numbers for patients means being able to communicate with them more efficiently and easily. You can cost effectively provide them with patient education materials and follow up with them regarding conditions. You can provide them with information that is relevant to them in a timely manner, and show them you genuinely care about their well being – which will make them far more likely to engage with your organization in the future.

  • Lower marketing costs

Sending email and SMS messages costs significantly less than most traditional print tactics.

 

For patients, providing electronic contact information to the healthcare organization results in:

  • More convenience

Receive a text message reminding you about that upcoming appointment, instead of a phone call. Or get an email letting you know your test results are ready and waiting in your patient portal, so you don’t have to call the doctor back. Providing your email address or phone number to your healthcare organization will inevitably save you time and effort. 

  • Proactive health management

In the hustle and bustle of every day life, who has time to think about getting to the doctor? Engaging with your healthcare organization electronically allows them to keep you informed of events that may be of interest to you, and remind you of important health screenings and immunizations you may need. And since you’re likely checking your email and/or mobile device multiple times a day, wouldn’t it be ideal to receive those reminders via email or text so they don’t get lost in the junk mail pile?

  • Better care and outcomes

After an appointment, instead of walking out with a huge packet of paperwork, receive an email that includes patient education information on your condition, including treatments to help you manage your injury or illness at home.


For more information on reaching patients effectively:

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