Meaningful Use Part Two - Reminder Messages

Meaningful Use has been a recent hot topic in the healthcare world, but do you know how it affects you? 

Last time we visited meaningful use we gave a broad overview of what it was with some terms and definitions.  We described that there were specific steps and a series of objectives that must be completed in order to move on to the next step. 

This week we will delve into one objective in particular: Patient reminders.   Meaningful Use Stage One highlighted the importance of patient reminders by requiring that as part of the objectives, these must be sent. Part one required that only patients who are 65 or older or 5 or younger be sent messages. However as part of Stage Two which is more recently in effect, all patients must be sent reminders of their appointments. 

Why are electronically generated reminders important enough to have been made a mandated objective? As an automated reminder software company we can provide you some answers.

  1. It’s useful for patients.  The number one priority of all businesses should be their customers and the same goes for doctors and their patients. Appointment reminders make life easier for patients.  They not only are reminded about their appointment (which in our hectic daily lives, who wouldn’t want a reminder!) but they are also reminded that your office cares and that helps establish stronger relationships.
  2. They make your office more efficient. No longer will your receptionist have to devote hours to calling your patients to remind them of appointments only to have to call those who didn’t answer back, again and again. The front office will not be tied up and unavailable to accomplish other tasks. Instead, as with InphoniteVoice, you can be assured that all of your reminders will be sent (and even verified!) to the correct person, in a method that they prefer.  This would leave significantly more time to devote to other important tasks.
  3. There are records. It is extremely important to keep secure and accurate records of all aspects of a patient’s health. With regular reports, doctors and staff can be assured that their reminders were sent, including details such as the method sent, the response received and more.  These reminders are just another aspect of a person’s Electronic Health Record.

So how can we help?

Measure 12 of Stage two states that offices must use “clinically relevant information” in order to identify patients that must receive messages. They must also send messages about preventative/follow-up care “in the form that the patient chooses.”   Without the ability to technologically create a rule in order to identify the patients you need to send messages to, it would be very time consuming manually searching through your database to determine which people to send messages to and in which ways. For instance, whose phone would you use to send those text messages? By using InphoniteVoice, an automated import and export program can be written specific to your needs, then rules can be created with whatever parameters you choose so that you send exactly the messages you want to exactly whom you want, in the way they want. If you need to send a message to only those over the age of 65, we can do that. Or if you need to send a follow up message to someone who recently had an appointment, we can do that as well. Some patients prefer not to be called during certain hours, or even at all and would prefer to be sent a text or emailed. With InphoniteVoice your patient can choose the best method for them (call, text, email, or a combination thereof, and even if they prefer a different language!) which ultimately makes your job a lot easier particularly when it comes to reaching those meaningful use requirements.