Handling Patient Checkout Using Proper PPE

As functional medicine practices and doctor’s offices are re-opening, checking in and checking out patients has completely changed. We’ve discussed the process for touchless check-in and pre-screening, but what about checking out? You will still have to have proper PPE in place for those that are managing the check-out process. 

You’ll need to figure out what works best for your office. Here are a few things to consider with the check-out process. 

Who Will Handle The Checkout Process?

Traditionally, the front desk handles the check-out process. During this exchange, they collect payment and schedule follow-up appointments. However, the front desk will need to be in proper PPE for the checkout. 

If you are going to have the front desk manage checkout, here are a few tips:

  • Install a plexiglass barrier at the window or checkout desk. 
  • Come up with a touchless payment solution through online payments or by taking them over the phone. 
  • Train the front desk on how to properly wear and remove PPE.

Some offices are choosing to have the assistants manage check-out in the ops or treatment rooms at the end of the appointment. If you are planning to have assistants check-out the patient, here are a few tips: 

  • Lay a wipeable plastic cover over the keyboards in the treatment op so they can be cleaned after each patient. 
  • Train assistants on how to schedule the patient for their follow-up appointment. It’s ok if the front desk needs to reschedule at a later time, but an appointment should be on the books before the patient leaves. 
  • If payment can’t be collected in the treatment room, create a communication system with the front to collect over the phone. They can call the patient while in the room and handle the payment before they leave. This could also be done for scheduling the follow-up appointment. 

Utilize Your Morning Huddle

If you aren’t already having a morning huddle with your team, now is the best time to implement it. This is a good way for the front and back to communicate about each patient and what to expect. 

You can nail down details about the appointment, payment, and what kind of treatment may be needed afterward. For example, of you already know how much the visit will cost, the front desk can collect payment ahead of time. Or, if you know what kind of follow-up appointment they need, it can be scheduled ahead. 

Can Your Office Software Help With The Check-out Process?

As things have changed with COVID-19, many software companies are updating the way their systems work for offices. Or, they may already have functionalities that can help with the check-out process that you haven’t been using before. In these early days of re-opening, you can spend time figuring out any software features and updates that can help you with the process. 

Decide What Works For Your Office and Stay Flexible

Every office has to decide what’s going to work best for their office. Also, it’s important that you stay flexible as a practitioner. As the guidelines change, you will be able to bring in more people to your office at a time. This will change the check-out process even more. Stay flexible and keep the lines of communication open with your team. 

Let Functional Medicine Help You With Your SEO

In the midst of re-opening your office, keeping your website up to date is likely the furthest thing from your mind. That’s why the team at Functional Medicine SEO provides a turn-key solution to increase your organic traffic. We’d love to offer you a free strategy session to go over your website and give you feedback on the SEO on your site. Sign-up for the session here and one of our experts will get back to you shortly. 

If you have any questions, be sure to contact us. Our team is always happy to talk with you.