Why Your Medical Practice Needs Live Chat

The number of businesses adopting live chat is on the rise, and healthcare and cosmetic surgery are two of the main areas which are gaining popularity. Live chat can be used for lead generation for taking customer’s details and getting in touch with them, setting up an appointment directly on chat or general queries which the person may not have felt comfortable speaking to someone about initially.

Lea Vale Medical Group is one of the longest established NHS medical practices in Luton. They have three surgeries across the town serving a population of over 24,000. As part of improving access to patients, Lea Vale implemented live chat for website earlier this year to provide more support online to their patients and reduce the stress on their administrative staff. 

Phase 1 has seen the practice integrate chat within their booking procedure, allowing patients to arrange appointments via the instant communication channel and receive confirmation in real-time. The Contact Centre Manager at NHS Vale of York commented:

“Really impressed with the product and its simplicity to use. The support has been fantastic and when I have needed assistance or queries answering, I have benefitted from people who take ownership and follow up personally. I look forward to a longstanding business partnership.”

So, why does live chat work so well in this field?

Sensitive Topics

Queries about cosmetic surgery are often a discussion directly about the patient’s biggest insecurity, which can be very difficult to talk about initially. Medical queries can also be very sensitive to discuss, so by having a chat option on the website, you make it easier for people to make that first contact.

If a site visitor has questions about a potential cosmetic treatment, having a live chat option there breaks down the barrier and means that they are able to speak to someone and get their questions answered without having to make the leap and speak to a real person straight away.

Real-time and Speed

A big issue for patients is that traditional methods of booking appointments via telephone often results in lengthy queue waiting times to battle other patients for limited spaces, or not being able to get through at all. 

Live chat enables the patients to instantly engage with a receptionist, as administrative staff are able to handle multiple chats simultaneously reducing the pressure that telephone bookings experienced with the build-up of queueing patients. This, in turn, helps to improve patient satisfaction as it lessens the frustration that individuals may have felt before even getting through to the practice.

24/7 Support

Having live chat as an option on your website means that there will always be someone on hand to help out with queries, no matter the time of day. Sometimes in order to book an appointment, a patient must call in a very narrow time-window and they can miss out on finding a time available.

If the patient has to work or is busy during that time, this can prevent them from getting the appointment they need. By providing a 24/7 live chat feature, this issue is eradicated entirely.

Personalised Assistance

In this week’s episode of Everything eCommerce, we discussed personalisation with Skin City, who offer quality skincare for a range of skin conditions as well as beauty purposes. One of the things discussed was that visitors to the Skin City site really benefit from their live chat feature as they are able to get personalised responses.

They can let the live chat agent know what issues they are looking to solve and what they need from their skincare, and the agent can assist them directly by making tailored recommendations and helping with any questions.

Final Thoughts

Live chat is on the rise for a reason, and healthcare is an area that shouldn’t be overlooked. If your practice is struggling to keep up with phone calls, or you are looking to generate more leads, then live chat would be a great option for you.

Find out more about why we are trusted chat providers for cosmetic surgery practices, orthodontists and more.

Watch the full episode of Everything eCommerce here.