Direct and efficient patient communication is key, we discover in the age of pandemic.
Sramana Mitra: Let’s start by introducing our audience to Relatient and to yourself.
Michele Perry: I’m the CEO here at Relatient. I’ve been the CEO since August 2017. A little bit about Relatient, we’re a healthcare IT company focused on patient outreach. We allow our providers to relate to their patients.
Sramana Mitra: Double-click down a bit and give me a lay of the land. There has been a lot going on in healthcare IT and a lot going on in patient communication as well of various flavors and styles. What’s different? How do you position yourself? Who’s the competitor? Who’s the collaborator?
Michele Perry: If you look at how it has evolved, the first thing that people did to try to communicate with patients is use the old call center. The next thing that came were these patient portals. They were done with meaningful use. People weren’t using them. They were clunky.
We took the approach of making it really easy for the patient and the provider to communicate. We use a combination of phone, email, text, and now chat to converse with the patient.
We don’t have a 100% of the stuff a patient portal might have, but what we do have, we get out to 90% plus of the patients. If you think about it, you could easily book a flight or an Uber. Today, you might be ordering dinner in. There are all these easy ways to do these things except for healthcare.
We are still in the dark ages in healthcare. People hide behind HIPAA. That’s just not the case. Financial systems have a lot of rules and regulations and they all figured out how to do this. Healthcare is at least 10 years behind in being able to have that communication with their patient.
Sramana Mitra: How do you sell that message? Every time we have a company that’s trying to sell on the basis of ease-of-use, it’s a bit of an uphill task because nobody else is willing to admit that their products are not easy to use. Customers have a hard time evaluating that. What is your experience?
Michele Perry: We’re not necessarily competing against other products and being easier to us. We are competing against the last generation of things that people did. People who come to us have real problems that we can give them real ROI solutions to.
Appointment reminders are the low-hanging fruit but we have a case study where we helped a customer save over a million dollars by reminding patients and making sure that they are showing up to the right appointment and to the right location.
Today you talk about patient self-scheduling. People are hanging up on phones because they can’t get through. They want to be able to schedule and see the different openings and say, “I could do 2PM on that day.” as opposed to talking to someone on the phone.
So everything from scheduling, e-registration, patient surveys, appointment reminders, and mobile bill payment. These are things that most providers today are starting to put together a roadmap of when they’ll roll some of those capabilities out. It’s not if; it’s when.