Tech giant – Microsoft recently announced the launch of cloud tools for healthcare systems. These are tools that include medical triage, telemedicine and coordination of healthcare using internet based services, chats and conferencing apps.
Starting with a free trial to help the healthcare industry during times of crisis that is increasing the need for technology solutions and putting hospitals in financial peril.
Some examples of technology usage for appointments bookings etc.
- Providence St. Joseph Health has used a version of Microsoft’s chatbot to screen patients for Covid-19 and funnel only those who need care to a provider or a telemedicine consultation.
- St. Luke’s University Health Network and a part of the UK’s NHS have used TEAMS chat software for appointment booking apps.
In November last year, Microsoft also announced a new Bookings app as a part of TEAMS to allow medical providers to schedule, conduct and transcribe secure virtual appointments through Microsoft’s chat and video conferencing program. After the pandemic got more acceleration, 483 hospitals and medical providers. The app will now be released publicly and is not limited to hospitals – individual doctors’ offices or smaller practices.
The total market for mobile health apps is predicted to exceed 50 billion by 2025. The number of doctors using virtual assistance will also double. There is a high demand of online appointment booking apps as around 47% millennials book their appointments online – it’s quick, easy and convenient.
Online medical appointment booking apps help systemize the patient data into a single system. The app can easily filter out the track record and draw up the last appointment and the prescribed medication. There is also a facility in such apps to book, cancel or reschedule an appointment. It saves the doctor and the admin staff a lot of time. Since cancellation is easy too, it reduces the patient no-show numbers and improves the overall efficiency of operation. Surveys also show that those healthcare systems that have mobile apps for booking appointments have seen a rise in new customers. It completely takes off the pressure from the admin staff who can then focus on other pressing issues at hand.
It’s important to note that 66% of US medical practices started using online booking appointment app and 64% of patients are using the appointment booking app.
Online appointment booking apps for the healthcare sector are the need of the hour. It is also quickly becoming a crowded marketplace – but there is still a lot of scope for the right kind of implementation for such apps in the industry.