More Patients to Book Appointments Online in Coming Years

More Patients to Book Appointments Online
More Patients to Book Appointments Online

(HealthDay News) — Digital self-scheduling is set to increase considerably in the next five years, according to a report published by Accenture.

Researchers from Accenture surveyed top U.S. health care systems to examine digital self-scheduling capabilities and forecast these capabilities for the coming years.

Based on the survey, the researchers predict that 66% of U.S. health systems will offer digital self-scheduling by 2019, and 64% of patients will use digital tools to book appointments. The investigators estimate that 38% of appointments will be self-scheduled in 2019, representing 986 million appointments. At present, nearly 40% of the top 100 U.S. health systems and 10% of remaining health systems offer the ability to digitally self-schedule appointments. Nationwide, patients self-schedule 2.4% of appointments, out of a total of about 11% of appointments that can be self-scheduled.

"Digital self-scheduling delivers significant financial and competitive benefits, helps maintain patient customer base, boosts operational efficiencies, and improves organizational flexibility and agility," the authors write. "As more health systems jump on the digital self-scheduling bandwagon, adopting improved scheduling options in the context of new models of care delivery, the sophistication of these tools will continue to increase."

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