The recent acquisition of CareTouch Communications by ResMed means enhanced capabilities and expanded services for both the Home Medical Equipment providers we work with and the patients they serve. But one thing won’t change – the caring touch that has always been at the core of our business. Since the inception of our business, a unique mix of technology and emotional intelligence has set us apart from the rest of the market.
Our communications with patients have been developed with an understanding that patients’ emotions and feelings may affect how well they comply with their prescribed therapies. We are mindful of the concept that how we connect with the patient on an emotional level and how they respond to our communications can potentially affect their level of compliance. Our Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system, which is designed to maximize patient interaction and response, pays dividends through patient compliance and reordering, compared to competitors’ systems which are built primarily to minimize initial costs.
Patient feedback and input from focus groups guided the development of our calling methodology. As patient preferences dictated, the IVR system leaves a voice mail message when patient can’t be reached. While many other companies do the same thing, they overstep their boundaries, bombarding the patient with multiple calls and messages per day. The cost to leave a voice mail message is about $0.02 per message, and we believe that your patients are worth more than a few pennies.
Our message flow is also emotionally intelligent in that it escalates with each call to reinforce the importance of a reply. For example:
Message 1) I have some important information for John Doe, please call me back or go on line.
Message 2) I am still trying to reach John…..
Message 3) This is my last message for John…..
Feedback indicates that patients appreciate the fact that you, the provider, stay in touch with them and show an interest in their therapy, but value the efficiency of the automated, outbound call system. Through the use of an automated, female, phone voice, which we’ve affectionately named “Faith,” we are able to provide an engaging, caring experience for patients.
Listen to this short recording of a ResMed ReSupply IVR call:
Notice that the patient in the call followed directions. And did you note responses to “Yup” versus “Yes” and “Great” versus “Five?” The system is designed to accept various potential and logical answers to questions, decreasing the likelihood that a patient must repeat themselves. So “Ya,” “Yup,” “Sure,” “OK” all map to “Yes” to make the system easier for your patient to use. In order to expedite the call, a verbal confirmation is turned off for “Yes” or “No” answers but is “on” for more complex replies.
We ask multiple questions related to therapy, prior to requesting the resupply order. This is intentional and a critical part of our offering. Our service is a virtual wellness check-up versus a “robo-call” pushing product. Following the wellness check-up philosophy marries beautifully with the emotional intelligence built into the system.
Imagine this scenario…. You arrive home on a Friday night, tired from working and, before you can set down your coat and keys, your son asks for $20 to go to the movies with a friend. What’s your answer?
Now, imagine that your son first asked how your day went, if he could help with dinner, if you wanted something to drink, before he asked for $20. Would you respond with a more enthusiastic “Yes?” Of course! And so do our patients. That interaction which demonstrates a personal interest in the patient and their therapy, before asking for an order, increases the order rate.
Many systems are designed to keep the customer in the IVR loop. Note that “Faith” informs patients up front that “You can reach a customer service representative by saying ‘customer service’ at any time during this call.” Based on patient feedback, the option to reach a person is the Number One feature demand by consumers when using an IVR. Likewise, if your patient fails to answer a question twice, or swears at the system in frustration, they are automatically transferred to our call center in Denver, Colorado.
When customers place a call to us, the IVR never places them on hold but enables them to easily complete their business through the automated system. Most callers choose to interact with “Faith.” But patients who indicate they prefer to speak with a live person are immediately transferred to our live call center.
The Denver Call Center is staffed Monday through Friday from 6:00AM to 6:00PM Mountain Time and Saturday 7:00AM to 3:00PM. We provide support in English, Spanish, French and German and will be adding more languages in the near future.
We are proud to offer Home Medical Equipment providers the synergies of technology and emotional intelligence. Our advanced IVR system for routine communications, backed up with a live, professional staff, provides the best of both worlds for you and the patients you serve.