InterviewBridge Patient Portal® Reports Record Growth for 2019. Interview with John Deutsch

Bridge Patient Portal® announced record growth for 2019 with a 68% increase in its client base–predominantly in organizations with 50 or more providers–and an 85% increase in the number of individual patients hosted in Bridge Patient Portal across the existing and new client base. To learn more about this interesting news, we conducted an interview with John Deutsch, CEO Bridge Patient Portal.

John Deutsch, CEO Bridge Patient Portal

1. Bridge Patient Portal has been experiencing tremendous growth in 2019, what are the main factors that contributed to that?

In first place, our focus has shifted towards growth. Since Bridge began in 2012, our focus has primarily been on R&D. While growth has been a big part of our focus since Bridge began, our growth was often temporarily paused as we went through a major R&D phase. We consider it to be the demise of many health IT companies where growth is pushed too quickly during important R&D phases. Bridge now has the product it dreamed to develop, so our growth going forward will be the right kind of growth. Secondly, the market has matured to seek out products like Bridge. Healthcare organizations are fixing their past mistakes of acquiring too many “one-off” patient engagement solutions, as they seek to consolidate these solutions with a single solution, such as Bridge. This translates to lower costs, higher efficiency and an improved patient experience.

2. Do you expect even more growth in 2020? Why?

Our shift in focus to growth in 2019 actually began in mid 2019. We expect growth to be our focus for all of 2020 and expect to grow over 100%.

3. Why is patient experience one of the top areas of engagement providers are considering for the future

Healthcare is highly competitive. In order for healthcare organizations to attract and retain patients, they need to be a step ahead of the competition. Patient portals and mobile apps which feature patient data and self-service tools create a “stickiness”. Patients put value in that their data is in one place and want to continue building on this data.

4. How do your solutions improve patient experience?

The convenience of having patient portal and informational features at the patient’s fingertips via a mobile app is easily the biggest contributor to an improved patient experience. The Bridge platform is also a consolidator of other patient engagement systems. Having notifications and self-service tools all coming from one system offers a number of benefits to both the patient and the healthcare organization.

5. What costs can you help health organization significantly reduce?

At its core, it’s significantly less expensive to manage one system than five systems that together accomplish the same as the one. Software licensing fees are less, the cost to manage five systems is higher in terms of staff effort, and lastly, each of these systems require their own interfaces, which in most cases, overlap in terms of the information that they receive/send. More specifically, Bridge can help reduce costs associated with bill pay (credit card processing fees), publishing a client-branded mobile app, interface development/maintenance and SMS/Email/IVR messages, to name a few.

6. Can you tell us more about Bridge’s new iOS and Android-based mobile app, and its new patient intake solution for patient web check-in?

Prior to Bridge version 3, which is launching in Q1, Bridge had a mobile app offering through a mHealth App Platform product it developed called Universe mHealth. While Bridge will continue to offer Universe mHealth, it’s mostly a solution for larger healthcare organizations seeking extensive customization options. Most of Bridge’s clients are in the 25 to 500 provider range. In these cases, the Bridge Patient Portal solution is offered as a mobile app, meaning that all the features in the web application are mirrored in the mobile app through modern mobile-responsive coding libraries. This translates to a significantly lower cost for publishing an app and a seamless experience for the patient to go from web to mobile. Bridge is also releasing its new patient intake solution in Q1 2020, which will allow patients to check-in to their appointment before arriving at the clinic on their PC, in the waiting room on their mobile device or via a clinic-provided kiosk/tablet.

7. What are your plans for 2020? 

# Simply to grow in a sustainable way, building on the many years of extensive R&D that has recently been completed. We also plan to attend more trade shows, release more case studies and white papers, and work closely with clients to increase the adoption of our newest features.

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