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The busiest time for any health centre or GP surgery is first thing in the morning as patients try to call in to book same-day appointments.

Modern telephone systems can help handle the stress often experienced by receptionists and patients using a range of features, including an automated...

09/07
2013
Educate patients with polite dissuasion messages
Posted by Caroline Moore on 09/07 at 10:46 AM Videos and webinars, Healthcare, On-premise telephone systems, Healthcare,

The busiest time for any health centre or GP surgery is first thing in the morning as patients try to call in to book same-day appointments.

Modern telephone systems can help handle the stress often experienced by receptionists and patients using a range of features, including an automated attendant.

An automated attendant works by answering all calls with a recorded message that is very often from the leading GP or practice manager of a surgery. It provides an immediate welcome before offering the caller a series of options, such as:

“Press 1 to book an appointment with a doctor, press 2 to book an appointment with the nurse, press 3 to order a prescription, or please hold to speak to a receptionist.”

These options can be changed to suit a GP surgery’s needs and serve to filter calls so they are picked up and dealt with by the most appropriate member of staff

The automated attendant can also be used to encourage some patients to call back at a more appropriate time or to use other services. For instance, before offering the options, the message could say:

“If you are calling about test results, please call again at 11am,” by which time the early morning rush should be over.

Another useful message would be to remind patients of the surgery’s online booking or repeat prescription ordering services and their web addresses.

The above examples of dissuasion messages are not means of fobbing patients off but instead are a polite way of educating them on the most appropriate time to call the surgery and what other services are available to them.

Dissuasion messages can reduce the number of calls received during the early morning rush and help patients with more urgent requirements get through to the surgery more easily.

 
Posted by
Caroline Moore's avatar
Caroline Moore on 09/07/2013

Former newspaper journalist, Caroline joined the company in 2008 with no previous knowledge of the industry.

She set about stripping back all the jargon to produce plain English marketing collateral to support the sales teams. Now slightly more well-versed in the dark arts of voice, connectivity and data services, Caroline writes blogs, case studies, data sheets and social media updates to engage with potential and existing customers.

This industry is far cry from her previous working life when she worked as communications manager for Exeter Chiefs and Northampton Saints.


Contact: caroline.moore@swcomms.co.uk