ARH launches new e-messaging system

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 27, 2015

Andalusia Regional Hospital recently launched an automated phone, email and text messaging system.

John Yanes, chief executive officer of ARH, said the new system reminds patients of their appointment time, allows them to quickly confirm or cancel the appointment, and notifies patients of important information such as suggested arrival time and preparation guidelines.

“Andalusia Regional Hospital is always looking for ways to enhance patient care and service,” he said. “This tool is an easy, automated program that helps our patients, who are busy working and managing their daily lives, stay informed about their appointments and keep their healthcare top-of- mind. Our hope is that this is one meaningful tool we can offer patients to make their lives easier and healthier.”

Earlier this week, Yanes said the hospital is already seeing fewer missed appointments, and people who need to change appointments are quickly rescheduling.

“Many times, the diagnostic may be follow-up ordered by the physician, who is waiting on the information,” Yanes said. “This is about convenience, but it is also about making sure patients are getting the care they need.”

Patients of Andalusia Regional Hospital Imaging Department will be automatically registered for the messages, which include text, email or phone options. If the patient decides he or she does not wish to receive the messages, there will be an option to opt out.

The messages confirm the appointment date, time and location; give patients an opportunity to confirm or cancel an appointment; and provide preparation information for specific tests, once the appointment is confirmed. It also can provide weather closing alerts, annual exam notices, and other information related to the patient’s medical care.

But there is also a human element, too, he said.

If a patient is required to pre-register for a procedure, or if he or she has to reschedule, a staff member will call to care of the business.

Yanes said this is one of many ways ARH is taking advantage of technology.

“Your dentist does this, and the beauty salon has a reminder system,” he said. “It’s one more way to make it easier to manage your daily schedule. “