For many healthcare providers, adapting to serve patients during the coronavirus pandemic meant temporary fixes and workarounds. However, there are some new systems that, if implemented permanently, can provide value even after this crisis is over.
One example: telehealth. A recent survey shows that not only do most patients prefer a virtual appointment to an in-person appointment, 83% are looking to continue using telemedicine in a post-COVID environment.1 Here are some reasons you might consider implementing an upgrade like this:
- Safety and Accessibility
For some patients, having an option for online, at-home care is preferrable even when in-person conditions are safe. For those preexisting conditions that put them at a high risk for contracting other illnesses, or those with a disability or mobility issues, telehealth is a safe, convenient way to reliably seek care.
- Schedule Flexibility
Telemedicine also allows more flexibility with schedules and in-office time. For example, if you organize appointments based on patient desire for in-person vs. online care, you can work remotely on set days. Creating this schedule can help you work toward a better work-life balance.
- Digital Integration
Because telehealth is inherently digital, you can use it to streamline record keeping and scheduling. Many platforms offer these services, which can replace your current system if you’re looking to upgrade or embed with your existing processes for seamless integration.
- New Patient Opportunities
You can remove the geographic barriers that many patients take into account when selecting a healthcare provider, like commute time to your office, proximity to home and work, ease of parking, etc. Eliminating this obstacle will widen your net for possible patients, and help you to attract new revenue, as research shows that 55% of Americans would be willing to use telehealth to see a new doctor for the first time.2
- Lower Operational Costs
Decreasing your in-person patient visits means less administrative and sanitation tasks, like turning over exam rooms, or maintaining a waiting area. This can save you money spent on both supplies and labor. Additionally, with less patients at a time seeking care in one place, you may be able to downsize your office, saving on rent or mortgage.
Telehealth technology is just one of many investments that benefit you now and in the future. You may also consider equipment upgrades, office renovations, or other technology enhancements that can help you attract new patients, improve patient experience, streamline operations and increase revenue.
A Loan Can Help
Now more than ever, healthcare providers are looking critically at their finances, especially as it relates to making prudent decisions about larger, long-term investments. While you may consider tapping into a cash reserve to make these expenditures, this can put you at risk should you need those funds in the future. An alternative to consider is a commercial working capital loan, which allows you to:
- Access funds quickly, so you can implement new technology without delay
- Keep cash on hand so you can cover ongoing operational expenses and other day-to-day costs
- Be prepared for unexpected costs, or unforeseen events
- Spread out the cost of your investment over a longer term, creating a more affordable monthly payment
Investing in a new technology is an important decision, and your financial partner should be with you every step of the way. Before you move forward with a lender, here are 8 questions you can ask to be sure you’re getting the best loan, and service, possible. To see how affordable a commercial loan could be, try our free, no obligation Payment Estimator today.