4 Benefits for Practice Utilizing a Patient Portal During (and After) COVID-19

The patient portal has long been one of the best tools for keeping patients engaged. Providers everywhere depend on this tool to stay in contact with their patients, guide them in their care, keep them informed, collect payments, and so much more. During the pandemic, the patient portal has proven even more useful, enabling providers to keep offering quality care to patients despite changes in regulations and settings. This revolutionary tool has contributed to practices maintaining high patient volumes, high patient communications, high patient payments, appointment adherence, and so much more.

Even with a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, providers will still depend on patient portals to help them deliver top-of-the-line care. Keep reading to learn about how this tool has been helpful during the pandemic, and how it will continue to be useful moving forward.

4 Ways the Patient Portal Has Been – and Will Continue to Be – a Useful Tool

Communications

Before COVID, providers were already starting to recognize the true value of digital communications. Patients wanted to access their providers and health information online, and providers could capitalize on the technology to improve the care they offer. Digital communications became even more important when the pandemic hit, with providers turning to their patient portals to sustain patient volumes, keep patients informed remotely, answer questions, and so much more.

The patient portal became a key source of knowledge for patients, including updates about COVID, practice operations, and safety. Without a tool like this, communications during the pandemic would have been much more difficult and required more work from practice staff.

As vaccines continue to roll out and the pandemic (hopefully) winds down, providers are positioned to move forward with an understanding of the value of digital communications for their practices. They’ve seen firsthand how a patient portal can improve relationships with patients and keep them engaged.

Online Bill Management

Collecting patient payments can be challenging. Providers need all the help they can get to collect as many as possible. With in-person appointments and payments decreasing during the pandemic, online payments through patient portals became even more critical to practice bottom-lines. Providers were able to continue collecting patient payments no matter where the visit took place.

Even after the pandemic, providers will find this tool powerful for increasing patient payments. A quality patient portal includes a fully integrated billing interface that allows patients to view and understand their bills, ask questions, and make payments on their accounts. The easier it is to understand a bill and make a payment, the more likely patients are to pay.

Appointments

These days, medical appoints could easily be digital or in-person. In either case, the patient portal will be an asset. Patients can access their telehealth appointments right from their portal. This integration is incredible for minimizing confusion about accessing virtual visits. The patient portal also relieves the burden on schedulers by enabling patients to schedule their appointments online.

Digital Intake

Lastly, digital intake has empowered patients to complete their intake paperwork online. The days of the paper form, completed in-office, manually transcribed into the patient’s chart, and then physically stored in a file cabinet, are over. With digital intake forms, practices can complete their intake processes in a streamlined way, with less room for data loss, human transcription errors, and accidental HIPPA-violations.

Digital intake also means patients can spend less time in the waiting room. With a patient portal, patients can complete their intake documents online in the days before their visit. This data is then uploaded automatically into their chart. For providers looking to minimize contact and complications during and after the pandemic, the patient portal is vital.

To learn more about a quality patient portal solution for your practice, click here.