Piedmont chose PerfectServe to standardize its after-hours services across its expanding employed physician base, reducing costs by 21%.
As Piedmont expanded through the acquisition of hospitals and physician practices, it started acquiring a large portfolio of third-party vendor contracts as well. Across more than 170 physician practices, Piedmont utilized 13 different after-hours answering services vendors, each with different fee structures.
Before implementing PerfectServe, some physicians were happy with their answering services, but many more were unsatisfied with operator error and inconsistency. Piedmont knew they needed to standardize to control costs, help their physicians communicate reliably and create a singular experience for patients.
Gaining visibility to the individual answering service contract terms and actual monthly spend were key first steps. The project team partnered with practice-level stakeholders to understand contracted rates, auto-renewals and termination clauses.
The purchasing department also gathered general ledger data to quantify the fixed and usage-based/variable monthly fees.
Finally, the quality and efficacy of services were evaluated in terms of outcomes, metrics, stakeholder satisfaction and ease of doing business.
Piedmont evaluated standardization options using these three criteria:
- Ability to address the stakeholder needs and goals
- Enterprise contracting opportunities
- Impact on overall spend
- Service standards and agreements
- Piedmont’s corporate direction
- Goals for growth and expansion of the organization and of the communication platform
- Best practices for eliminating manual steps, streamlining communication workflow, meeting service quality metrics, ensuring HIPAA compliance and patient/physician satisfaction
Today, PerfectServe’s automated answering service replacement is the standard after-hours solution for Piedmont’s physician practices.
At Piedmont, PerfectServe eliminates the opportunity for human error, reduces communication cycle times to expedite care and improves patient and physician satisfaction.
Piedmont Physicians enjoy the following benefits:
- Non-urgent messages are delayed until the next working day, so they aren’t called in the middle of the night for routine issues
- Home and mobile phone numbers are masked when calling patients
- Call schedule changes can be made on the fly, straight from the PerfectServe app, and when physicians are called into surgery unexpectedly, their calls are routed to the covering provider
- Easy communication and sharing of information with colleagues, without compromising PHI