Doctors want to make sure they can give the best care to all of their patients but it’s not an easy task in a world that is getting busier and more complicated every day. As a result of this increased workload, doctors are finding that they have to spread themselves & their budgets further and further. In an industry that is already highly competitive, many doctors are wondering what the solution is. Thankfully there’s a revolution happening in the healthcare industry and it comes in the form of a virtual medical office.
Let’s take the pain out of running an office a virtual medical office takes full advantage of technology to provide doctors with the support they need. How can a virtual medical office – where the worker would never need to step foot in your office – provide a digital solution that can cut costs and increase productivity?
What is a Virtual Medical Office?
Although it may sound like something out of a computer game a virtual medical office has its foundations in a brick and mortar doctor’s office. However, whereas the traditional approach towards running an office would involve a full in-house staff a virtual medical office avoids this by recruiting virtual healthcare assistants who need nothing but a computer and an internet connection. It’s a highly simplified approach to recruiting staff and one that’s becoming increasingly popular.
Every virtual healthcare assistant is unique and accordingly, this ensures that there’s a huge range of skill sets available for doctors to bring into their office. A virtual medical scribe for example can easily connect with a doctor to provide enhanced EMR documentation while a virtual medical receptionist can help to bridge the gap between patient and doctor. And a virtual medical office doesn’t mean that every single physical member of staff needs to be eliminated; instead, a better balance of essential in-house and remote workers can be struck.
In particular, doctors look for support from virtual medical assistants in the following areas
Scheduling patients appointments and arranging referrals
General data entry such as EMR updates
Patient confirmations and reminders
Ensuring that insurance documentation is verified and processed correctly
Greet the patients as they walk into the office
Helping to deal with any patient queries
Now thanks to the great number of support that can be provided by virtual medical assistants doctors are now able to hand over a significant proportion of their daily activities to their virtual healthcare assistants.
The beauty of a virtual medical office is that it can seriously reduce a workload that is in danger of leaving doctors exhausted and patients failing to have their expectations met. A virtual medical office provides a win-win situation for both doctors and patients but what are the benefits that something like this can truly provide?
The Benefits of a Virtual Medical Office
Every doctor wants to provide a world-class service but lack of available space and budget restrictions have meant that it’s been a struggle to achieve everything they want. However by having a virtual medical office doctors have access to a wide range of benefits that cut costs and increase productivity.
These benefits include:
Equipment costs are significantly reduced: Almost every single member of staff whether a receptionist or ascribe requires access to a computer to complete their day-to-day tasks. And supplying an entire workforce can be a costly thing particularly when you then have to factor in maintenance costs. With virtual healthcare assistants, there is no need to provide their equipment as they supply their own and this can seriously slash your equipment costs.
Reduced payroll costs: Virtual healthcare assistants are a little different from in-house staff as they tend to work with agencies like VA.care. The upside of this is that doctors don’t need to invest funds or time into dealing with payroll issues such as tax and team member benefits. Likewise, benefits such as medical insurance also don’t need to be offered up to workers in a virtual medical office so this can be much more cost-effective than an in-house assistant.
Shorter waiting times for patients: With virtual healthcare assistants on hand and doctors suddenly find that their workload is reduced and this benefit soon spreads throughout the entire office. With every aspect of the business running like a well-oiled machine the office will be able to run more effectively and the doctor will be able to see more patients throughout the day. This reduces the waiting time for patients and ensures they get the care they need when they need it.
Virtual medical scribes allow doctors to engage with patients: One of the most common complaints that patients bring up is that they feel as though their doctor is not listening to them. However, the truth is that doctors simply don’t have enough time to fully engage with patients as they’re too busy documenting notes about the visit. Once a virtual medical scribe is on hand though this immediately provides the doctor with more time to connect with their patients and provide an enhanced experience that promotes loyalty and trust.
Enhanced operating hours: Thanks to the availability and flexibility of virtual healthcare assistants a virtual medical office can effectively operate after-hours and even on weekends. As a result, the less crucial admin tasks can be completed off-hours and this generates more time during daytime hours for the more urgent and important tasks. We use Time Doctor an amazing service that allows us to track our virtual assistant’s work time and ensure they are using their time wisely. This provides a valuable boost in productivity that, only a few years ago, would have been unimaginable and, yet again, ensures that the office can provide the best possible service to its patients.
Increased space can drive innovation: The most obvious impact of a virtual medical office is the lack of space it takes up. And for any business space is a valuable asset as it provides an opportunity to make use of it. For a doctor’s office, this immediately opens up opportunities to provide additional services which would previously have been unimaginable due to the space required to house the equipment. These advances can provide increased revenue for the office make it more competitive and enhance the experience for patients.
It’s clear to see why a virtual medical office can cut your costs and increase productivity for your surgery so it’s time to embrace this setup and reap the benefits.