3 Strategies for Engaging with Patients During COVID-19 and Beyond

4 min read

Thoughts from the perspective of an industry partner

The world has been plunged into uncertainty over the spread of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) causing extreme anxiety and distress for organizations like yours on the front lines. We are here to help.

Envera is working side by side with our customers to create a variety of ways in which to reach patients, inform them and engage them. We know your resources are strained and some programs are in danger of being shuttered, so now more than ever, your patients need reassurance and information from you.

As a 24×7 contact center with both inbound and outbound contact capabilities, we have developed critical communication tools that you can use to navigate your patient base, create loyalty and deliver critical information about your service changes in real-time.

There are three key strategies you and other health systems are deploying nationwide that we can help you rapidly implement, and which can have an immediate impact in helping you manage through this unprecedented time in history.

  1. Moving to a virtual world

Social distancing guidelines are forcing you to drive consumers to use virtual care wherever possible. This includes offloading patients previously scheduled for appointments, offering concerned patients a chance to see a physician, or creating alternatives for physicians to continue to care for patients. Relaxed regulations that are now encouraging virtual visits have provided a tipping point for this service and Envera can help support the move to virtual in a variety of ways including:

Converting existing patient appointments to virtual visitsOutreaching to any patient population for any service line to move patients to virtual visits and assist patients with signing up.

Assisting with registration for virtual visit/portal: Supplying your patients with the information and ability to interact digitally with your health system will offer them the comfort of knowing they can access care when they need it. We can notify your patients via text to encourage them to register for virtual visits and/or sign up for your patient portal as well as manage any questions they must get enrolled.

Reaching out after virtual visitsEnabling you to contact patients after their virtual visits to assure they received the care they needed, they understand their next steps and ensure them you are concerned about their welfare.

Managing inbound calls related to virtual visits: Providing help handling the increased number of calls and inquiries coming into your practice and navigating patients to information, registration, or support.

  1. Keeping the Emergency Rooms Clear

For better or worse, the emergency rooms have become the epicenter for managing this crisis, and all signs show we haven’t seen the worst of it yet. Managing and moving capacity to keep the emergency rooms clear for critical needs is essential now more than ever. We are modifying our discharge management solutions during the crisis to help you manage the surge in your ER demand.

Reaching out to all COVID-19 emergency room dischargesTo manage your COVID cases and minimize revisits, we can outreach to 100% of those cases via text or phone, ask them custom-designed questions to ensure they understand their discharge instructions, and inform them about additional care options such as virtual care if needed.

Reaching out to all “High Risk” for COVID-19 patients: To minimize emergency room volume, we can contact patient populations you believe may be at high risk for contracting COVID-19. We can do this via automation and provide an early screening tool in order to enable you to minimize ER visits by sharing alternative care locations, providing information on the disease, and instructions on how to stay healthy.

Managing the inbound calls into the ED: Emergency rooms across the country are being flooded with calls from consumers about COVID-19. Whether they are looking for resources, to come in to be seen, or asking about other care options, we can serve as a “front door” to the emergency room, managing those calls and guiding patients to the right place for the right care

  1. Letting your patients know you care

Finally, while the slow-down in elective procedures has likely had a major impact on your high margin services, this situation won’t last forever, and recovering those patients will be paramount to your survival.

Keeping in contact with patients while they wait for a return to normalcy is a simple and straightforward way to ensure your patients know you care and that they should come back when it’s time. We can help engage with your patients throughout the crisis, share information, link them to resources, and remind them you are there for them in these uncertain times. This outreach can include:

Reaching out proactively to avoid the risk of loss: Outreach via text to all patients affected by this crisis whether their appointments were canceled, rescheduled, or moved out indefinitely. We can send them messages for every appointment that was canceled and without a reschedule within the next 3 to 6 months or if not converted to telehealth.

Providing general information outreachSend regular informational updates to select populations of patients to keep them informed, show them you care, and solidify your role as a resource for their health

Things we are doing now

As the very real impact of COVID-19 continues to impact all of our healthcare clients, we want to reassure you that we remain fully operational and innovating for the industry. We have taken a series of steps to ensure that we can support the call center your engagement needs through this emerging health situation including establishing secure remote connectivity to enable our staff to remotely service our clients and their patients, establishing onsite and offsite data backup capability to ensure quick recovery time, and assigning backup personal for all critical roles and functions.

As we navigate this time of uncertainty together, we hope that you and your families are safe and well. Be assured that we are here if you need us.

Erinne Dyer, Head of Growth