Scheduler Accountability: The Ins and Outs

Before joining the healthcare industry, I had no idea about all of the aspects that go into ensuring a patient is able to see the provider that they need to see. It sounds like it would be easy, but every time appointments are successfully booked, attended, and reimbursed – it’s actually kind of a small miracle.

You see, when a patient calls to schedule an appointment with a provider, the only words they typically hear are…

“Would you prefer morning or afternoon?”

The Problem With This:

The reality is, there are often countless other factors that the scheduler is having to consider when booking that appointment. For example, what providers are able to see this visit type? Which of those providers accepts this patient’s insurance? What locations will these providers be at? How many days is the patient willing to wait before the appointment? How long have I been on the phone?

Then the patient – and likely the provider – are left with a less-than-desirable appointment because the scheduler was worried about their call duration. The systems that we have in place within healthcare organizations are supposed to help ensure that the appointment scheduler is doing satisfactory work, or that they’re being held accountable. And while these systems are supposed to help guarantee quality work, they can – in some instances – become a hinderance.

Even with tools that monitor call durations, abandonments, and wait times, appointment schedulers don’t really know if they are performing well unless they get an earful from providers or other administrators. But understanding all of the elements that go into a scheduler being successful at their job is the first step.

The Solution is Simple:

To get the clearest picture of how successful your front-office staff are, the Opargo team looks every single booking that gets done, and we not only ensure that all of your providers’ rules and preferences are being adhered to, but also that appointments are scheduled in the way that is the most optimal, based on practice and provider goals. Automation and predictive analytics simplify a lot of the complexities that come with scheduling patients, and reporting and insights give your organizational leaders a better understanding of how these staff members are performing, i.e., if they are choosing appointments that are optimal for not only the patient, but also the practice.