- What is a patient portal?
- Benefits of patient portals for medical practice
- Features of a patient portal software
- How to make patient portal software?
The quality of medical services is a priority for patients, but the interaction with the doctor’s office is also important. Today's patients want a seamless and innovative experience with healthcare institutions. Patient portal software development is a profitable investment for both the patient experience and in-hospital process optimization.
How do you create a patient portal, and what is the need for this solution in modern medical practice? Let’s find out.
What is a patient portal?
An online patient portal software is a web and/or mobile application aimed at providing seamless interaction and communication between a hospital and a patient. With the help of this software, a patient may save time and effort while providing the same benefit to the hospital.
There are two types of the patient portal:
- A stand-alone solution. In this case, a patient portal has a limited set of features and isn’t connected to any other systems used by the hospital. This solution is used for simple interactions like scheduling appointments and making payments.
- Integrated patient portal. This is a more complex solution that is integrated with an electronic health record (EHR) and medical billing system. This type of patient portal software is more expensive to create, however it brings more benefits to the hospital since more administrative operations can be automated.
Benefits of patient portals for medical practice
The portal is aimed at solving the organizational issues of managing patients. There are a lot of benefits of patient portals. Here are the main advantages of patient portals for healthcare institutions.
- Facilitate the work of a healthcare administrator. Your medical patient software may work as a support team for your hospital. With the help of the software, your patients can resolve issues on their own thereby reducing the workload of your healthcare administrators.
- Improve communication between a patient and the healthcare team. What’s more, your hospital portal software can work as a powerful communication tool, especially if it is powered by artificial intelligence (AI). AI-powered chatbots embedded into a patient portal may help patients keep track of their insurance claims, send payment reminders to them, share self-care tips, and schedule appointments automatically.
- Contribute to telemedicine development. According to research, custom patient portal solutions have a 90% adoption rate in the US, however, there are still issues. If you haven’t used this solution for your hospital before, now there is a great opportunity to follow patient portal best practices and come up with an outstanding solution that will benefit your patients, streamline your in-hospital process and generate high-quality medical data.
- Get rid of medical errors. When an administrator or nurse interacts with patients on the phone there is always a risk of misunderstanding. Using the medical portal, the patient can independently manage the consultation appointment process, ask organizational questions, and receive quick answers.
Features of a patient portal software
Below are the best patient portal features according to patients:
- Appointment scheduling. This is one of the most demanded patient portal features. Seventy-seven percent of patients want to use it for seamless planning.
- Viewing health information. With this feature, your patients can view their lab test results, review their medical history, and changes in treatment.
- Viewing bills and making payments. If your patient portal software is connected to your medical billing system it will be even easier for patients to pay for services or make insurance claims.
- Filling out pre-visit forms. Doctors spend 10-20 minutes surveying patients about their basic conditions, vaccinations, allergies, and complaints. Filling out a pre-visit form allows doctors to save this time (which may be 1-2 working hours per day), and answer patient questions online.
- Sending HIPAA-protected messages. When a patient interacts with a chatbot, their messaging should be securely protected with encryption technologies. What’s more, following HIPAA requirements is obligatory for web portal software development.
How to make patient portal software?
Let’s find out how to make a patient portal step-by-step.
- Identify your target audience. Developing such a portal makes sense when the vast majority of your patients are tech-driven (i.e. Millennials and Generation Z). According to the study referenced above, more than 90% of healthcare providers offer this service, but only a third of the patients actually use the medical portal. Perhaps the root of the problem is the lack of need among the target audience like when a hospital or clinic mainly works with senior patients who are not tech-savvy.
- Follow your patients’ priorities. According to the same research, the ability to schedule a doctor's consultation is the most requested feature of patient portal systems. Millennials will also appreciate the ability to pay for services through the app, as well as knowing in advance the cost of services.
- Keep patient portal requirements in mind. Your hospital patient software should be HIPAA compliant. What’s more, if you are going to embed payment features, you also need to follow the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) that consists of 12 security requirements.
- Evaluate the efficiency of the portal. Healthcare web portal development alone is not enough. You should clearly measure its effectiveness using indicators and comparing data. For example, with the help of data analysis, you can find out how much time your doctors have saved with the help of a pre-visit form.
- Consider data security concerns. Medical information is worth more in the black market than any other data. Patients are concerned about data protection. Besides the fact that you need to seriously protect your system, you have to convince your users of its safety.
- Find your software development partner. Choosing among patient portal software vendors can be challenging. We recommend starting with a company that already has experience in medical development and identify your current problems and how they can be resolved with the help of portal technology in healthcare.
Are you having difficulty finding a partner for patient portal app development? Archer Software is here to help. Our medical app development experience and practice-proven tips can guide you in creating an effective and engaging portal that can streamline your hospital's processes. Find out how we can be of service to you by reaching us at firstname.lastname@example.org!