Preparations for a new telephone system: Telephone System & Telephone Access Survey

We are preparing for a new phone system. And we would like the help from our patients in making this the best it could possibly be. We have two surveys running about our system, that can be accessed via the following links:

What is known about the new phone system?

  1. It is cloud-based, this means the practice can access the system remotely if this is required, which is great for business continuity purposes
  2. It will link up with the clinical system, which means it recognises the phone number if we have a patient registered with that phone number. This should help to find the appropriate medical record quicker.
  3. It has the ability to allow our patients to cancel or check appointments without needing to speak to a receptionist (theoretically even outside of office hours) – this is something you can also do via the NHS App already
  4. It can add a call-back function, where if you are 5th in the queue, you can choose to keep your number in the queue but be called back by the system instead of hanging on until a receptionist is available to take your call
  5. It could work with voice recognition to perform tasks you tell it to do (if those tasks are available). Like what you see with some insurance companies or banks, ‘What would you like to talk to us about today?’ – ‘Book appointment’, and you are put through to the correct work stream.
  6. And several other options that we still need to be trained about and work out.

We hope and are confident that this phone system will be more user-friendly for our patients and the practice and will hopefully also reduce the time people wait on the phone. A few seconds saved finding the correct medical record a few hundred times a day should affect the time people wait in the queue. With the number of patients that call us every day, this may still not be perfect, but it should be a further improvement on what we currently have.

So far, we’ve had the company visiting the practice for a site survey to determine the work that needs to be done before the system is put in place.

When will it be in place?

We don’t know yet, but we have been informed the aim is for this to be by June at the latest, hopefully earlier than that.

So, have your say on what you think should be part of the new phone set-up. We want this to be the best for our patients and the practice.

Have your say on which features you would like to see in a new telephone system.

Telephone System/Access Satisfaction Survey

In preparation for the installation of a new phone system, we would like to find out how our patients feel about our current system. This way we can compare the outcomes of this survey with a repeated survey once the system is in place to determine whether the change has had the desired effect (of an improvement in patient experience).