5 Tips for Selecting the Best Answering Service for Your Santa Barbara Medical Office
When choosing a medical answering service for your small business, it can be difficult to know what to look for. Whether you are unhappy with your current answering service company, looking for enhanced services, or seeking a professional answering service for the first time, it’s important to consider the following key points:
Professional Representation of Your Medical Office
Your phone answering service should reflect positively on your medical office’s image and align with your core values. A capable virtual receptionist should be well-trained to answer calls in a timely manner, greet callers politely and professionally, and respond to requests with the utmost courtesy. They should also follow a customized script that accurately suits your needs.
Live Agents Available Around the Clock
Your patients rely on you, so you need to be reachable 24/7 in case of an emergency. The best doctor/medical answering services respond with live agents for every caller, 24/7, 365 days a year. No one appreciates sitting on hold for hours at a time, or being forced to talk to a machine. Friendly, live agents will help attract and retain patients, and keep your office running smoothly even after normal business hours. When properly trained, your assigned agents should know how to screen your calls and when to relay messages or immediately connect you to a patient.
HIPAA Compliance Training
A quality medical answering service should provide HIPAA compliance training for their agents. Such training ensures that they understand medical protocols and privacy laws. In addition, the company should require any of its agents who are taking patient calls to sign non-disclosure agreements, and take measures to keep all patient information safe and secure. This not only protects your medical practice from lawsuits, but also contributes to a positive patient experience.
Interactive Appointment Scheduling Systems
The best medical answering services should be able to serve as your office’s virtual receptionist. Similar to your own in-office receptionist, a virtual receptionist can be expected to reliably schedule meetings, relay messages, update calendars, and send out patient reminders. In order to facilitate this, the answering service company needs to provide its agents with the latest telecommunications equipment, such as interactive appointment scheduling systems. The company should also offer essential services such as call screening, voice mail, personalized greetings, and custom hold prompts.
Reliable Reporting and Response
A great medical answering service should provide you with multiple ways to receive and transmit messages, such as text, fax, email, and call forwarding. You’ll also want to be able to rely on your call center’s agents to respond to emergency situations in a calm and professional manner. All agents who will be serving as your virtual receptionists should be thoroughly trained in your protocols, so they know how to properly assess incoming calls, and route them to the appropriate staff member accordingly.
BTE Communications is an award-winning telephone answering company that has been dedicated to providing exceptional medical answering services to Santa Barbara doctors, health clinics, and other healthcare providers since 1958. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you better serve your patients, call us today at (888) 277-7671.