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Dynamic call routing: the new normal for telehealth triage


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Balancing increasing demands for telehealth services with a positive patient experience can be challenging. That’s where dynamic call routing comes into the picture; it allows healthcare staff to triage calls so that patients receive the care they need. Dynamic call routing is part of cutting-edge integrated healthcare communications platforms.

Dynamic call routing saves time for your healthcare staff while facilitating a better patient experience. Integrated healthcare communications platforms that include dynamic call routing capabilities help healthcare facilities adjust to the increased demand for telehealth services. (To help your office meet patient needs with telehealth services, we’re offering healthcare providers RingCentral Office, free of charge.)

How does dynamic call routing work?

Dynamic call routing is based on the principle of answering rules. Answering rules allow you to forward incoming calls from specific numbers to any phone number in the world. For example, a provider could establish answering rules that route calls from existing patients to one staff member’s extension, while calls from people who aren’t patients yet would be directed to another staff member, who could spend time on specific intake assessment tasks.

You can also set after-hours rules so that calls are directed to another number, such as an on-call staff member or external answering service. The rules are also flexible enough to match a provider’s unique scheduling needs; if one staff member works on Tuesdays and Fridays, calls can be routed to that extension, while calls are routed to another number on days that staff member isn’t working.

Download RingCentral’s Rule-based call routing template

How does dynamic call routing facilitate a better patient experience?

Even in times of high demand for telehealth services, patients can still have a positive patient experience. In fact, they expect it, no matter what the circumstances. They don’t want long wait times or multiple call transfers. 

That’s where dynamic call routing really helps. As mentioned earlier, answering rules could be configured to route calls from existing patients to a specific staff member, while calls from potential patients would be directed to another staff member to determine what, if any, telehealth services are needed. With such a system in place, every patient (existing and new) feels as though their needs are being met, despite increased demand.

FAQs for call routing within telehealth

  • How does call routing work within telehealth?

Call routing within telehealth is based on a set of answering rules. Answering rules are built upon the “if-then” principle. We’ll use the previous question as an example. If a potential patient calls, then the number is routed to a particular staff person. Here’s another example: if someone calls after the office closes, then the call is routed to an answering service.

  • What is intelligent call routing within telehealth? 

Intelligent call routing within telehealth means that the rules are flexible and easy to modify. For instance, let’s say you have a staff member who comes in on Tuesdays and Fridays, while another comes in on Mondays and Wednesdays. These staff members use different telephones, so call routing has to change every few days. Intelligent call routing makes it simple to change the answering rules that you’ve set up so your practice can stay agile and efficient. 

  • What is patient routing within telehealth?

Patient routing refers to directing the patient to the right employee to handle the issue. Sometimes referred to as “same agent assist,” patient routing would involve directing a recognized phone number (from a patient) to a certain staff member. In times of high telehealth demand, you want to be able to accommodate your current patients as well as potential patients. Patient routing allows you to avoid handling all patient calls as new patients or having patients provide their back history multiple times when talking with different staff. 

Integrated healthcare communications platforms: helping healthcare facilities meet greater demand

Dynamic call routing is a cutting-edge feature of integrated healthcare communications platforms. RingCentral’s integrated healthcare communications platform offers this and many robust contact center features. All of these tools are designed to help providers increase patient touchpoints and support telehealth scheduling and other patient services. 

With RingCentral’s integrated healthcare communications platforms, patients can connect with their providers on any device they want, anywhere they want, at any time. RingCentral’s platform can handle a high volume of patient demand, ensuring that everyone has a positive patient experience. Deliver the ideal patient experience. See how cloud communications are transforming healthcare. Get the demo.

Originally published May 26, 2020, updated Apr 23, 2021

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