Recently a new disruptive healthcare technology, the Digital Front Door, has started gaining traction as part of a shift towards a more patient-centered approach to healthcare. Nevertheless, many healthcare organizations are still unfamiliar with the term. Here, we demystify the concept, explaining why this emerging approach to digital healthcare can be hugely beneficial for improving care, empowering patients, and boosting healthcare organizations’ revenues.
A healthcare Digital Front Door incorporates all the digital methods that patients can use to interact with their healthcare providers, providing patients with a single entry point to a suite of self-service tools, healthcare education, telemedicine, and other patient engagement features.
This solution aims to provide patients with an excellent user experience (UX) by simplifying the process of completing any self-service action and reducing the number of steps in a patient’s online healthcare journey. In order to provide the best possible patient experience, the Digital Front Door also integrates seamlessly with healthcare organizations’ existing source systems, including Electronic Health Record (EHR), Revenue Cycle Management (RCM), or Practice Management (PM) software. This enables a solution to extract important data about the patient’s medical history, outstanding bills, or upcoming appointments and collate it in one place.
As John Deutsch, CEO and founder of Bridge Patient Portal, explains: “The Digital Front Door is not just a patient portal or website with a suite of self-service tools, but rather a client-branded mobile or web app with all the rich functionality of their patient portal, website tools, and other patient engagement features.”
A healthcare Digital Front Door is the answer to patients’ demands for consumer-friendly healthcare that matches up to the convenience they are accustomed to in other aspects of their daily lives, from buying groceries to ordering a cab. Expectations for intuitive digital services with a single point-of-entry are growing, and patients are starting to notice which healthcare organizations are falling behind.
Benefits of a healthcare Digital Front Door
A Digital Front Door that encompasses multiple patient engagement features is cheaper than purchasing multiple piecemealed solutions that only focus on a few aspects of the patient journey, such as instant messaging and telehealth, or telehealth and appointment scheduling. Managing multiple disparate patient engagement systems requires skilled employees and more time and effort on the part of these employees, so an all-in-one solution can pay dividends in terms of productivity and efficiency.
More than 50 percent of all patients now expect some sort of digital offering from their healthcare provider. A simple way to improve both patient acquisition and retention is by providing these in-demand solutions. Digital Front Door features such as HIPAA-compliant messaging, collaborative care plans, and patient education not only attracts new patients but also help providers build long-lasting relationships with their existing patients. Offering intuitive and easily accessible digital services is a huge part of building this trust: patients are far more likely to remain with a provider that allows for transparent access to patients’ extensive medical records and health information.
Beyond the array of services available, the prioritization of good UI/UX is another major benefit of the Digital Front Door. Businesses within other sectors have found that investing only a dollar in improving UX results in a return of 100 dollars, and the same is likely to be true in healthcare. In short, patients and practice staff are more likely to adopt and use patient engagement solutions found within an easy-to-use Digital Front Door. This results in an increased ROI on these investments.
Features of a healthcare Digital Front Door
Here are a few of the most in-demand features included in a Digital Front Door solution. For a more comprehensive list, we recommend reading the following article: How To Execute An Award-Winning Digital Front Door Strategy.
Patients value the ability to send and receive electronic messages with their healthcare providers. Bidirectional patient messaging allows for safe and timely communication between both parties.
Electronic medical scheduling software gives patients the flexibility to schedule appointments at a time that suits them, regardless of their healthcare practice’s operating hours. Furthermore, online booking and rescheduling doesn’t require any interaction with practice staff.
Online medical records
A Digital Front Door allows patients to access their medical records easily. This can include encounter notes and health records from multiple providers and patient-provided data from remote monitoring sources. In addition, patients can access their latest test/lab results through this feature in a secure and HIPAA-compliant manner.
Patients appreciate the convenience of requesting medication refills online from anywhere and at any time from a device of their choice. According to one Accenture survey, 77% of patients would choose a healthcare provider that allows patients to request prescription refills electronically.
Due to the increased demands of modern life, many people inevitably end up forgetting their doctor’s appointments from time to time. That is why many patients seek out providers that send automated patient appointment reminders. These reminders can include information about medical conditions, routine health maintenance, or invitations to book if they have not had an appointment for a certain period of time.
A Digital Front Door should provide patients with all the information they need to locate and interact with a practice, including contact information, opening hours, and wait times. Patients should also be able to use this function to search for healthcare providers based on specialty or location.
Today’s patients expect a seamless digital healthcare experience that’s similar to the ease and comfort of the mobile apps they use every day, and they’re tired of waiting for healthcare to enter the digital age. This should create a strong impetus for healthcare organizations to adopt a user-friendly, all-in-one digital solution that can better engage patients, cut costs and increase revenue. Learn the best strategy for building a Digital Front Door from industry-leading experts at Bridge Patient Portal.
Digital Health Buzz! aims to be the destination of choice when it comes to what’s happening in the digital health world. We are not about news and views, but informative articles and thoughts to apply in your business.