Missouri-based Freeman Health recently implemented online check-in and digital patient queuing in two of their urgent care clinics. Freeman’s ‘Save My Spot’ strategy aimed to reduce wait times and bring in new patient volume. The queuing system automates patient expectations and gives staff much better control over influencing patient arrival patterns by throttling down time slots during their busiest hours and opening up slots during typically slower parts of the day.
Delivering new patient volume
Freeman Urgent Care Director Kayla Martinez summarizes the appeal of Save My Spot for her patients as something akin to “…call ahead seating at a restaurant, you can get your name in line and then do your waiting at home or in your office.”* Patients can plan out their visit at the time of day most convenient for them and avoid sitting in a waiting room when they’re not feeling well with other patients who may have contagious illnesses such as flu.
Patients immediately caught on to this idea. In the first two months:
- 9% of patients made an online reservation
- 15% of online reservation came from new patients
- 93% of patients surveyed said they were either ‘very likely’ or ‘likely’ to recommend Freeman Health to a friend/family member (n-219)
Doubling the % of 5-star Google reviews
Freeman has also seen an immediate uptick in positive Google reviews. Patients consistently praised the convenience of the service. ER Express’ reputation management feature elicits patient feedback via SMS text and then prompts the happiest patients to share their feedback on Google. Good reviews based on the convenience of the service, as well as the use of our built-in text survey which prompts the happiest patients to leave their feedback on the Google for the facility they visited, have started rolling in as well. Case in point, Freeman Urgent Care at Webb City received three new 5-star Google reviews in a 24-hour period following the online check-in go-live. Summary of the stats**:
- After go-live, 78% of Freeman’s Google reviews had 5-stars
- In the ten months prior to go-live, only 43% of Google reviews were 5 stars
- More than double the overall number of reviews
Here’s a preview of the good things patients had to say:
Getting the word out: digital marketing + local news + traditional signage
Freeman’s marketing team launched a very effective campaign to publicize Save My Spot in its community by combining digital promotion, local news reach and street side signage.
- They made the service exceptionally easy to locate on the home page of the health system
- They shared the launch with local media outlets such as KOAM News Now and The Joplin Globe
- The displayed a large, can’t-miss-it banner outside each urgent care advertising Save My Spot to help convert walk-in patients to using the online service for their next visit
The full embrace by Freeman’s operational and clinical leaders combined with a savvy marketing campaign points to future increases in new patient volume, 5-star Google reviews, and overall usage of the online check-in service.
*Source: Koam News Now
**As of 2/19/2020; based n patient reviews posted for Freeman’s Webb City clinic