Taking Doctors Off the Line

Following a special program partnership between NotifyMD and the Iroqois Healthcare Alliance, doctors throughout most of upper New York State may almost never have to pick up their office phones again.

Through the partnership, hospitals and physicians now have access to call management services and patient communication solutions for 24/7 call services. Doctors can use the speech-enabled service to field and route incoming phone calls and handle outbound calls to remind patients of appointments or other important information.

"Typically, a patient calls a doctor’s office and gets voicemail. He can either leave a message or try calling back later. We answer that call, verify who’s calling, and find out what he’s calling for," says Arthur Lane, vice president and chief strategy officer at Franklin, Tenn.-based NotifyMD. "We gather the information and send the call directly to the person who handles that request for the doctor."

When a patient needs to leave an urgent message for the physician, NotifyMD can expedite the call by supplying the doctor with all the pertinent information before transferring the call, Lane continues.

In addition to the voice-enabled IVR, NotifyMD also offers a transcription/dictation service and an automated outbound calling function for things like appointment reminders. The system automatically calls patients, and allows them to respond, reschedule, or leave an additional message as needed.

NotifyMD is built on Cisco’s Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) platform. Speech-to-text technology is provided by VocalEZ, which uses a Nuance Communications platform. It works with virtually any landline, wireless, or VoIP telephone. It also includes live-voice answer, complete documentation, and real-time reporting for every patient call.

"We increase the efficiency of medical practitioners, giving physicians more time to do clinical work rather than performing front-office tasks," Lane explains. "Our goal is to be a total, one-stop communications solution provider in healthcare for inbound and outbound calls."

Since 1986, NotifyMD has provided call management services to physician group practices. It currently serves more than 18,000 physicians in more than 40 states from six call centers.

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