With technology seeping into every aspect of lives, the modern day patients expect the experience of having a healthcare checkup seamless as well. The need for technology in the patient’s experience starts right from booking the appointment.
A recent research report by Accenture found that on an average, it takes about 8 minutes for a doctor’s appointment over the phone. Rescheduling or cancellations of appointments further add to that time. Developing a doctor’s appointment booking app can help significantly cut down on this time, adding to the practice efficiency while significantly improving the patient experience at the same time.
Benefits of developing a doctor appointment booking app for your practice
There has been a surge in appointment scheduling software in the recent past. An appointment scheduling app has benefits for both the doctors as well the patients..
Benefits of appointment scheduling app for doctors
- Improved efficiency and streamlining of processes
- Enhanced digital presence
- Better management of staff scheduling
- Time saved on administrative tasks
- Reduction in appointment no-shows
- Avoidance of patient overbooking and long wait times
- Elimination of human errors in the data entry
- Access to performance analytics based on cancelled appointments and no-shows
Benefits of appointment scheduling app for patients
- Access to extensive directory of available healthcare professionals
- 24/7 accessibility to book, cancel and reschedule appointments
- Real time communication with healthcare providers
- Reduction in wait times at the clinic due to streamlining of workflow
- Access and pay bills on inclusion of payment functionality in the app
- Automatic reminders and integration with digital calendars
While the benefits of developing a doctor’s appointment app for your practice are multifold, before setting out on your development journey, it is important to finalize what features you should include in your app.
We have divided the doctor’s appointment app features into two categories, the essential features and the optional features. While the essential features are the must-have features to include when developing the first version of your app, the optional features can be a nice addition in the further iterations of the app.
Essential features to include when developing a doctor appointment booking app
1. Doctor profiles
The doctor profile feature helps patients book the appointment with the healthcare provider of their choice. This feature becomes necessary in case there are multiple practitioners offering their services under the same practice.
The doctor profiles should allow the healthcare providers to input the necessary information such as their educational qualifications, certifications and licenses, years of experience, specialty and competencies so that patients can make an informed decision.
Ratings and feedback from previous patients can also be displayed alongside the doctor profile in the doctor directory to aid in decision making.
2. Search functionality
The appointment booking app needs to have a search functionality allowing the users to search for doctors by name, location, specialty etc. The smart search functionality should also enable users to shortlist doctors based on specific filters and then make their choice from the options available.
3. Calendar integration
The calendar integration feature on a doctor appointment booking app allows the users to have real time insights into the appointment schedule and the availability of slots for appointments.
The calendar functionality allows the patients to choose the slot that is feasible to them and book their appointment. It also allows them to cancel/reschedule their appointments if the need arises. Your team can easily manage confirm appointments from the admin panel and a confirmation is sent out to the patients about their upcoming appointment.
4. Reminders and notifications
Periodic reminders intimating the patients of the upcoming appointments are a great way of limiting patient no-shows in the healthcare practice. Push notifications are another tool that act as a great tool to remind patients of their appointments without being too intrusive, effectively boosting the patient engagement levels.
5. Patient reviews
Once the appointment is commenced, the doctor appointment app needs to direct the users to a simple and easy-to-use screen for rating and reviewing their experience with the doctor. This encourages a feedback loop and enables better decision making for future users.
Additional features to include in doctor’s appointment booking app
1. In-app payments
In-app bill payment options are a good feature to include within your application if you are also offering telemedicine consultations with the healthcare practitioners. On the go payment streamlines billing and payments for tech-savvy users.
Patients are increasingly preferring virtual appointments with their doctors. eConsultations via telemedicine can also be used as a preliminary screening tool within your appointment booking app to triage patients on the basis of urgency and facilitate home-management of non-emergency cases.
3. Integrated medical records
Cloud based patient treatment records that the patients and healthcare providers can access securely are a great way to boost interoperability in healthcare delivery. The app can also have a feature that allows the patients to upload any lab reports or scan that the doctors need at the time of consultation through the app itself.
Symptom checker, chatbots and text-based consultations with the healthcare providers are all additional features that you can choose to incorporate into your appointment booking app. Your app can also have an in-built database where the patients can get more info about their symptoms before booking the appointment.
5. Online prescription ordering
From doctors prescribing medications to the patients to the patients searching for a nearby pharmacy to see the availability or order medications, ePrescriptions can go a long way in making the patient’s experience better.
How much does it cost to develop a doctor’s appointment booking app?
An appointment scheduling app for your practice is crucial for streamlining the patient experience, cutting down on the wasteful administrative expenditures, and improving the efficiency of your practice. However, the cost of developing one depends on a number of factors.
You would need a provider app, a patient app and an admin panel at the very least. The kind of features you plan to integrate, the estimated timeline of development, size and experience of the development team building your app, all factor into the development cost of your doctor’s appointment booking app.
Once you have decided on the features that you want your appointment booking app to contain, Arkenea’s experienced team of developers specializing in healthcare software development can help you in figuring out what the exact cost of developing your application would be.
With more than a decade of specialized experience in the field of healthcare software development, our portfolio comprises of diverse software development projects in the healthcare domain. Get in touch with our consultants for discussing your app idea today.