Do patients enjoy filling out stacks of paper forms? It’s a question medical practices should think about when it comes to reassessing patient satisfaction. With technological advancements at your doorstep, improving your patients’ experience is certainly within your reach. Let’s go over one key way to make it a reality for your practice.
What do patients expect from the intake process?
Concern for long waiting room time, countless paper forms awaiting them, and forgetting to take important things like - reading glasses, medication lists, insurance cards, etc are a reality for many patients. Medical practices that understand this, embrace digital solutions that give patients convenient options to complete the entire intake process from the comfort of their home, alleviating undue stress and anxiety.
What is the #1 patient-preferred way to ease the intake process?
Why do most patients want digital intake processes?
Easy Access - Patients can access digital forms remotely, from any device, at their leisure before the appointment. No need to print out forms or wait until the visit to get them done.
Simplicity - Digital forms don’t require penciling in answers. Quick clicks, easily keying in information, and electronic signatures are 20X simpler and faster than manually completing paper forms in the office.
Better Accuracy - Illegible handwriting, missing signatures, and front office staff entering patient info incorrectly into the system are everyday downfalls of paper forms. Digital forms have built-in E-signature requirements prior to submission, and sync directly into the providers EMR software (like Athena), eliminating manual data entry errors.
Submitting documents in advance - Patients enjoy being able to capture and submit all the required documents prior to the visit. IDs, insurance cards, medication lists, photos, etc can all be submitted with the digital forms, eliminating the need to bring them to the visit.
What are Practices saying about Online Forms vs paper?
Making the switch from paper to online forms has become a fast-expanding trend for healthcare practices across the US. Doing away with the nuisances of paper forms has created an undeniable upturn in patient and staff satisfaction. Mary Jo, office manager at Lift Dental expressed her exuberance on making the switch to digital forms:
"We're saving up to 7 hours a week spent on data entry as well as saving on the overhead costs of hiring another admin, which overall saves us $65,000 a year. It just wouldn't make sense not to use (it)."
Thousands of practices have accelerated their intake process via online medical forms, and have benefited from the following:
- Saves 35% of documentation time, cutting down the need for manual entries
- Less room for human errors or inaccuracies in information
- Simplified process of patient completion from home -> submission and approval -> integration into EMR software (Athenahealth)
- No more lost or missing paper charts - all information is instantly pulled up with digital forms
- Cost saver - reduces the need for printing, scanning, storage of charts, or paper-related items
- Faster transfer of information cutting down wait times to almost nil
- Automates administrative work giving front office staff autonomy
- Improves patient satisfaction and recall rates
- Better HIPAA compliance and security via end-to-end encryption
- Eco-friendly solution
Patients have spoken loud and clear - the vast majority want medical practices to provide the convenience of online medical forms, and do away with paper forms. The countless advantages that digital intake forms provide for patients and front office staff far make it a no-brainer to jump on the paperless bandwagon.