How Using A Bump List Can Help Navigate Crises Like COVID-19

2 min read

While the healthcare industry continues to be strained under the weight of a surging pandemic, physicians and practice managers are forced to manage their businesses in very different ways to protect their patients, their margins, and their staff. These operational decisions often disrupt schedules, staffing, and patient appointments to create room, ensure safety, and react to illness within organizations. To manage the disruption, physicians and practice managers are increasing their use of bump lists.

What is a bump list?

Bump lists are created and managed in a variety of ways, but their basic function allows patients to be seen, open capacity for more urgent needs, and communicates changes in appointments to patients in a more timely and proactive way than a typical patient list. Bump lists usually perform three important functions:

  • Bump lists flexibly move, cancel, or reschedule patients’ appointments due to staffing/health restrictions in the practice
  • Bump lists manage patients who need to be seen on an urgent basis—and are willing to see any provider as appointments become available—by moving those patients into any provider’s schedule with an opening
  • Bump lists create “blocks” of scheduled provider time that allow patients to be seen on an as-needed basis but only for a single healthcare need

Using Bump Lists to tackle a new wave of COVID-19

Bump lists have been in use for some time, this article from 2016 details one practice’s first use, but they may be more relevant today due to COVID-19 demands. Bump lists are particularly effective when restrictions are placed on elective procedures. Bump lists can be created for patients needing elective procedures to be proactively contacted and rescheduled once the restrictions are lifted. Bump lists can also mitigate scheduling interruptions due to staff illness, infection, and exposure inside of practices and groups by moving and rescheduling patients to be seen by healthy providers in safe settings. In a COVID triage environment, bump lists’ use of “blocks” is particularly powerful for scheduling symptomatic patients by separating them from other potentially non-COVID-19 patients— offering greater protection to all.

We can help with your bump list

If you’re a physician or practice manager that is unable to effectively manage the increased need to move, cancel, or reschedule appointments with your current staff, we can help. Our best-in-class people, technology, and workflows can use your predetermined and designated time “blocks” to proactively manage patient calls for appointments, relieving the burden on your staff that needs to focus on treating patients safely. Additionally, the Envera Health Engagement Center can perform proactive outreach for patients’ appointments that you either need to move or reschedule completely without using any of your resources to complete this time-consuming task.

Bump lists are not new, and they aren’t going anywhere. If you aren’t using one yet, it’s time to consider how creating your own can help you manage future times of crises. If you are currently using bump lists to manage appointments but want to prevent anticipated logjams and ensure patient satisfaction then it’s time to find a partner who uses current best practices so that you can focus on what you do best: giving patients the critical care they need when they need it.