IVR stands for interactive voice response. It is a computerized phone system that directs calls from customers to the appropriate staff member, and it also gives callers a menu of options to choose from depending on what service they want.
It may be able to help your pharmacy better manage care for patients.
There are a number of different tasks that IVR can perform:
It can handle messaging for prescription refills and scheduling appointments.
It can send pickup and appointment reminders to patients, even birthday greetings.
It can send text message reminders.
IVR can also manage prescription orders from healthcare providers, and it can store voicemails.
Pharmacies are reluctant to use this kind of technology mostly because they are concerned that people would rather talk to a real human being rather than a machine. But IVR advocates argue that the technology actually brings more efficiency to the communication process, getting customers linked up to the person they want more quickly.
With IVR, people are not stuck on hold for long periods of time. Instead, they pick an option from the menu that will connect them with someone quickly.
Advantages of an IVR
Advocates of this type of phone system argue that it can improve outcomes for patients and also boost the income of a pharmacy.
In addition, the system can prevent interruptions while people are working, reducing the number of calls that staff members have to deal with and enabling them to work more efficiently. And because staff members then have more free time, patients can more easily contact them directly, without having to wait on hold.
The phone system enables patients to get assistance immediately. And pharmacies are able to give patients the most up-to-date business and contact information when they call.
The IVR system also eliminates the possibility of errors that can arise with voicemail when pharmacy staff try to refill prescriptions. It also can eliminate the need to call a patient back to review the services they need or ask for additional information as staff would have to do with voicemail.
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