A doctor’s time is clearly limited by the overwhelming number of responsibilities toward patients. Doctors often struggle to keep track of their schedules, book appointments with patients, as well as manage their personal tasks, which can lead to frustrated patients.
Many clinics are finding digital solutions to this problem as shown by the steady growth of the medical scheduling software market size. This rapidly growing popularity of online doctor appointment app development can be attributed to two major reasons:
- Fewer people go to the hospitals directly to book an appointment since the COVID 19 pandemic began. As a result, the need for medical appointment booking app development has grown significantly in the last two years
- The growing need for better satisfaction in the delivery of healthcare services to patients at their convenience
In this article, we cover a step-by-step process on how to develop an app for booking doctor appointments and the benefits.
Benefits of the Doctor Appointment App for Clinics and Healthcare Organizations
A medical appointment booking app allows patients to choose their preferred specialist and secure their hospital visit online. Doctor appointment booking app development requires significant time, effort and investment. On the bright side, the end product provides substantial benefits in terms of convenience and satisfaction to the doctors, patients, and front desk workers.
Other benefits include:
Higher Administrative Efficiency
According to a recent survey,
- 60% of respondents book appointments with service providers online
- 42% of respondents consider being put on hold during the phone call a huge time waster.
- Moreover, 17% of respondents suffer from the inability to book an appointment during the hospitals’ nonworking hours.
Medical appointments software increases efficiency in two ways:
- By decreasing the time it takes to make an appointment
- By reducing the amount of work for front desk employees when booking an appointment.
A Doctor appointment app significantly streamlines the billing by automating the processes involved. Hospital administration can issue bills through a mobile app, and patients can pay through the built-in payment gateways. The billing history can be reviewed and checked at any time.
Increased Patient Satisfaction
Recent research shows that 43% of patients prefer to schedule an appointment online and 57% of consumers go online to find healthcare providers. Younger generations will definitely enjoy the new way to contact the hospital and are more likely to visit more often with proper communication methods in place. Medical apps will also be appreciated by people with tight schedules that have very limited time to schedule an appointment.
Minimized Appointment No-Shows
$150 billion each year is lost by the US healthcare system because of the patients who don’t show up on the visit.
The hospital front desk may not always have the time to reach out to every patient and remind them about their appointments or reschedule all over again. Technology can do that though – every patient on the app gets an automatic reminder about their appointment. If for some reason they can’t make it, they can always reschedule at their convenience.
Minimized Manual Errors
Unfortunately, front desk workers are prone to manual errors when handling patient and billing information. Every mistake or duplicate records result in a potential financial loss that can easily be averted with process automation.
How to Make a Doctor Appointment Application – Key Modules
An appointment scheduling app will only return the investment to the clinic if it has the right features. Patient booking, scheduling, and reminders are some of the must-have features.
Here are more features to include in your on-demand doctor appointment app development.
The scheduling feature should remain active 24/7 and allow patients to book appointments with their doctor in real time. Patients should also be able to choose their preferred day and time within the app.
Patients should be able to choose their preferred service provider from within the app. You can include a search function based on location, health issue, gender, specialization, years of experience, and reviews from other patients. Don’t forget to allow users to share feedback on the health app. or share links to other well-performing service provider websites.
In-App Messenger and Reminders
An in-app messenger supports fast and efficient communication between the patient and service provider. Patients may need to specify some details about their visit or request additional information from the clinic through messages.
To increase clinic visits, we recommend adding app notification reminders, messages, or emails a day or two before the appointment. This helps patients remember their appointment and prepare in advance.
Interfaces for All Parties of Appointment Scheduling Process
Patients, doctors, and front desk personnel primarily benefit from doctor booking apps. Each party requires specific features to experience the full functionality of the app. We’ve outlined some of the features for specific parties below:
A patient profile is an individual, user-specific record. It contains all the personally identifiable information about that user, including information about their state (e.g., allergies or chronic conditions), demographics, and contact information. Medical apps should provide access to patient profile information should patients or doctors want to access it at any time.
A doctor profile showcases the service provider’s experience, education, skills, and interests in an easily-accessible digital format. Instead of having to keep track of these details manually or storing them in numerous documents on the hospital/clinic website, it’s much easier to just create an app that showcases all the information on the user’s mobile phone.
Appointment Scheduling Platform for the Front Desk Employees
Medical apps allow hospital staff to monitor the invoices, generate custom reports, and track the performance of the healthcare facility with greater efficiency. Moreover, front-end staff will be able to manage such appointment-related information from one platform. This also includes:
- Document uploads (to let patients share their lab tests, screening, and Electronic Medical Reports)
- Real-time chat
- Symptom checker
- Audio and video consultations
All these features would greatly streamline the administrative processes, so front desk employees would have more time to concentrate more on boosting their efficiency.
Doctor Appointment Booking Application Development: Step-by-Step Process
Here’s how to make a doctor appointment app in 5 clear steps.
Decide What Features Your App Will Have
Before you begin looking for a developer or a company to help you create your appointment app, you’ll need to decide what features it will have. For instance, you may want the app to provide patients with the ability to view a list of your doctors and their bios, as well as their services and contact information.
You may also want it to allow patients to sign up for text or email reminders about their upcoming appointments, and have the option of integrating with third-party platforms, such as online booking websites to make the process even easier. Make a list of everything you’d like the app to do, and don’t be afraid to get specific. The more detailed you are, the easier it will be for developers to understand what you’re looking for.
Find Team for Design and Development of Online Doctor Appointment System
If you decide to build the app yourself, you’ll need to find the right developer for the job. There are a number of factors you should take into consideration when doing this, including the developer’s experience, the cost of their services, and the amount of time they’ll need to complete your project.
Below are the most common development options on your table:
- In-house team: a team that works as a part of your company, has their own office and is on salary
- Software outsourcing vendor: in this model, you hire a team from a specialized doctor appointment app development company on a project basis. It can be based in your country or overseas. Be sure to find a development team with fairly-priced services, lower labor costs, and high-quality products
- Tech partnerships: a tech partner takes full ownership of the product creation process and provides along with the development services
Capitalizing on the expertise of the outsourcing vendor in a certain domain can be a reasonable investment even if you already have an in-house team. In case you are looking for a reliable software development vendor, feel free to contact Langate. We have extensive expertise in the healthcare industry and can work within a cooperation model that is most suitable for your business needs.
Create a Doctor Database
There are two ways to access doctor-related information through the app:
- Connect to publicly available doctor databases like 1upHealth, Doctor.com, BetterDoctor, Doctor Database through the API
- Compile a database of professionals from other healthcare organizations from scratch
If you develop a custom solution for a particular clinic or healthcare chain, you will need a second approach and the Langate software development team knows how to work with sensitive health data and databases.
Work on UX/UI Design
While creating interfaces for all groups of app users, designers need to keep in mind the primary needs of each group:
- Design for the patients’ portal should be intuitive
- In the doctors’ portal, all EHR-related information should be easily accessible up to date
- Pay special attention to the needs of your front desk employees by designing an app that can handle administrative information
After creating the prototype of the app, you are finally ready to start the actual development process.
The development team would need to work on building the front-end interfaces of the app, developing its back-end architecture, connecting doctor databases, creating solutions for the in-app message exchange, sending push notifications, and processing payments.
HIPAA protects patients’ information from leaking out to unauthorized parties and imposes huge fines on those who do not follow the guidelines. Make sure that your IT team knows about the regulatory compliance standards for healthcare and can sufficiently secure the app.
In case you want to leverage the expertise of professionals in compliant software developers, feel free to contact Langate. We fully encrypt health data for GDPR & HIPAA compliance and ensure its safety.
Improve the Product Based on User Feedback
If you do not update the app regularly, it is likely to become obsolete and unable to keep up with the competition. So, listen to your patients and medical staff feedback to successfully satisfy their ever-changing needs.
Langate has been working with healthcare medical appointment booking app development for over 17 years. Our HIPAA-compliant center and professionals will help you develop your raw idea on the paper into a detailed plan based on your unique needs.
Additionally, the Langate team has extensive experience in identifying the unique business needs of healthcare organizations and building custom solutions for them. In our recent case study, we explain how our team has developed software for clinical trials that is perfectly tailored to the specific clinic needs.
We will assist you in every step of doctor appointment booking system development and make sure that your app will stay relevant and beneficial in the years to come.
If you decide to create an online doctor appointment system, you’ll need a trustworthy partner to help you every step of the way. A medical appointment app significantly reduces a patient’s likeliness of not showing up, boosts customer satisfaction, and automates time-consuming administrative routines.
Ready to develop an app to book doctor’s appointment? Langate can create a custom solution tailored to your specific needs! Reach out and figure out the first steps with us.