Understanding the Difference Between Medical Telephone Answering Services and Call Center Services
Which One’s Right For Your Practice?
If you operate a medical practice and you’re considering employing the services of a live answering service or call center service, you should know the difference between the two before you make any decisions.
SERVICES: One of the main differences between a 24 hour telephone answering service for doctors and a medical call center service provider is how they handle calls and their ability to handle more complex matters. Call centers typically handle more than just standard phone calls; they can respond to email, web support, book appointments, process bills, and offer chat services.
ANSWERING CAPABILITIES: Agents in medical call center services are usually better trained to support the hospitals or physicians practices that they’re employed by, and therefore able to offer more in-depth services. Oftentimes, after a talk with an agent at a call center, the caller/customer may not even need to speak with someone at the actual office. A doctors answering service usually answers commonly asked questions and delivers messages to the doctors or nurses. For this reason, they can be ideal for small, growing healthcare practices. A call center, however, can spend upwards of 15 minutes or longer on a conversation, while an average call with an answering services lasts just 1-2 minutes, behaving more like a front office receptionist, only in a remote location.
Typical Services Available Only With Medical Call Center Services:
- Surgeon Paging
- Trauma Alert ETA
- After-hours ER paging
- ER & Non-ER Patient Calls
- Stat Calls
- Code-blue Emergencies
- Lab results
COST: Due to capabilities of call center agents, it usually costs more per minute for a phone call than with an answering service. A call center will often charge per minute, while an answering service usually can charge per call or offer unlimited minutes within a monthly plan. Both are flexible with costs depending on what the business will need.
Both types of phone message services can be right for dental practices, ambulatory care, physicians office, clinics, and multi-specialty groups. Let us help you get the best possible price on whatever type of call center answering service your office needs.