June 28, 2018
In a previous post, Patients as Consumers—Adopting the Amazon Model, we wrote about the imperative of adopting a customer-obsessed engagement model to improve patient satisfaction and convert billing to revenue.
In this post, I’ll walk you through five Amazon-like consumer outreach solutions that will help you engage patients like a retail ninja.
Ninja Move No. 1: Personalize Payment Portals
Nearly three-fourths (74 percent) of online consumers get frustrated with websites when content appears that has nothing to do with their interests. Healthcare patients are no different. They want a portal with information on their particular situation and information that is relevant to them.
Amazon allows its users to choose preferences. To apply this to your patient payment portal, follow some simple practices. Greet them with, “Hi, [name]!” Show notes and any next steps from their last appointment. Give patients the ability to select preferred methods of contact for appointment confirmations, appointment reminders, out-of-pocket payment methods, and any additional follow-up required before an office visit.
Ninja Move No. 2: Facilitate Patient Satisfaction
Just like customer reviews and satisfaction are important to Amazon, patient satisfaction is vital in healthcare. From start to finish, the patient is silently rating their overall experience. The loss of a patient due to dissatisfaction can result in a loss of over $200,000 of revenue over the lifetime of a practice.
Amazon provides support options to suit the preference of every customer, whether it’s a call, chat, or community forum, and each channel maintains first-class customer satisfaction.
Zirmed suggests helping patients help you. For example, providing patient-initiated payment plans, intelligent statements, and mobile capabilities improves patient satisfaction and gives providers what they want as well. You cannot afford dissatisfied patients.
Ninja Move No. 3: Provide Price Transparency
On Amazon, purchase prices and shipping costs are clearly visible alongside every product.
Bring that same price transparency to the patient’s bill by explaining charges up front. Determine opportunities to inform the patient of their financial accountability. By opening the communication channel and engaging the patient in billing strategies, you are more likely to have patients who take ownership and not only pay the bill(s) but also pay on time.
Influence behavior and inspire action by tailoring the payment conversation to avoid sending surprise bills or bills that are higher than expected.
Ninja Move No. 4: Automate Bill Payments
Amazon Pay makes the checkout process quick and easy with the “1-Click” feature, which allows users to complete a purchase with the click of a button.
Over 80 percent of internet-connected U.S. households pay bills online — and over 90 percent use more than one online bill payment option. According to Fiserv’s Eighth Annual Billing Household Survey Insights, customers who are provided up-front estimates of service billing are more likely to meet payment commitments, are more satisfied with the services delivered, and are more loyal to service providers.
Automated bill payments help patients pay on time, since they don’t have to remember when payments are due or log in to make a payment. The patient payment portal should be able to facilitate payments, whether it’s a payment due alert or executing an automatic payment plan.
Ninja Move No. 5: Build Smooth Website and Mobile Device Interactions
Amazon is easy to navigate, and its layout is intuitive. Healthcare can be confusing, but the portal where patients access their billing information shouldn’t be.
Not only do patients want a smooth website experience, they also expect the same effortless experience on their mobile devices. According to the HIMSS Revenue Cycle Improvement Task Force, “Patients expect to be able to use their smartphone to determine the level of care available to them, to have pricing, quality and patient satisfaction information at their fingertips …”
Become hyper-focused on the patient and what works for them. Patients need health systems and vice versa. If the two work together, then better-quality care results.
RevSpring Can Help
Integrated payment communication is part of RevSpring’s DNA. We tailor the payment conversation to influence behavior and inspire action. Our segmentation rules and workflows help you become hyper-focused on the patient, understanding the patient’s ability to pay and mapping his or her financial obligations to repayment pathways.
If you’d like to learn more about our comprehensive patient engagement and billing solutions, we’d love to help you. Request a demo to see how we can help your organization meet its goals or stop by Booth #225 at the HFMA Annual Conference in Las Vegas from June 24-26, 2018.