Healthcare Technology Featured Article

May 20, 2021

Healthcare CRM: How to Manage Patient Relationships

Over the last few decades, the health industry has recorded tremendous growth and as a result, has become increasingly competitive. Patients are now more informed, hence, increasing the demand for accurate and timely customer management and service. In fact, over 30% of the customers within this evolving market have considered switching their healthcare providers due to poor customer service experiences. Since customer retention is becoming one of the most strenuous things to sustain in the healthcare industry, many healthcare facilitators have amped up their CRM services.

According to reports, the Global Healthcare CRM Market size is expected to exceed USD 21.46 billion by the year 2025. Increasing patient engagement and relationships, as well as structured data demands without sacrificing security, are largely the driving forces behind this expected rapid increase. 

Customers Relationship Management (CRM) is essentially a platform that allows you to log and track your customer relationships. This could include contact information, money spent to date, past services, and preferences. A healthcare or medical CRM works with the same essence. It helps organizations easily locate patient data, payments, history, which can then be used to personalize relations with each individual patient and even improve follow-up care, boosting patient satisfaction levels and loyalty.

Communication and patient engagement become especially important when dealing with ever-changing insurance coverage rules that cause confusion and unrest. Not to mention additional stress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Masses now stay more alert and aware about their health whereabouts.  

Unfortunately, the healthcare industry seems to be years behind the global standard when it comes to adopting effective digital communication channels in order to keep up with consumer-driven demand for a better customer experience. The challenge here is to utilize innovative technology to increase personalization through marketing automation while maintaining human touch and reducing the risk to security.  In order to support the changing trends in regards to marketing and patient relations, implementing the right tools and technology is absolutely crucial. This is where a healthcare CRM comes into play as it allows you to do just that. In addition, it helps you in streamlining administrative tasks of your facility, optimize patient care and management as well as improving medical sales and marketing initiatives.

The competition in the healthcare sector is getting tougher. According to statistics, most people choose a specific clinic or hospital, based on whether the staff understands their needs and provides personalized patient care experiences. In the event that a healthcare provider is unable to keep up with these changing demands, patients are quick to switch to ones that do. Thus, the use of medical CRM has become an integral step to driving sales and staying on top of the healthcare game. 

How CRM Can Help Manage Patient Relations

Typically, healthcare CRM systems are designed for medical institutions such as hospitals, laboratories, medical centers, public or private clinics, etc. By incorporating a CRM in your healthcare institution, you can follow the best customer management processes and keep the patient’s data up to date. This could include medical history, past visits, medical bills, etc. 

You can even set up an online medical portal to schedule appointments and track them. The healthcare CRM generates useful reports and metrics that allow clinics to analyze their work on a regular basis.

It enables the staff to learn more about the behavior, needs, and demands of patients which is the first step to developing better and stronger relationships with them. Additionally, it allows for an instant assessment of each customer relationship, resulting in faster resolutions based on priority issues reported by customers. 

CRM Healthcare assists in improving customer retention. According to research, about 20% of Americans have not been to a doctor in the past year while about 46% of patients in the UK miss at least one doctor’s appointment per year.

Missed appointments and no-shows are considered bad news for both patients and health providers alike. This means that while patients may potentially be missing out on crucial care, practices are likewise missing out on business.  But by setting up reminders and notifications through the use of a healthcare CRM, all of the patients’ future appointments will be logged and scheduled. And integrating it with your marketing tools, you can send regular email, phone, or SMS confirmations to your patients without having to contact them manually.

A significant portion of healthcare costs is assigned to administrative overheads. Fortunately, updates and automation via CRM can aid in eliminating tasks regarding scheduling and patient follow-ups. This time and cost saved could then be spent on providing better service to patients.

Furthermore, it allows you to monitor the progress of each deal in your team's pipeline, making it easier to close new deals in a shorter period of time. Also, you can monitor the risk of prospective outreach accounts via any device and reduce manual effort, which leads to duplication and delayed information.

All in all, healthcare CRM makes patient management more efficient and effective. It helps identify problems and improves overall patient satisfaction, resulting in better customer retention rates.

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