Phase 1 of ColumbiaDoctors’ adoption of DocASAP, the online scheduling tool, is up and running as of April 6.
“This is a very exciting step forward for the faculty practice. We’re helping to expand patient access with the intention of rolling out the program to include all clinical practices that wish to participate,” according to Kate Dauer, director of patient access for the faculty practice. This first phase of the rollout “has focused on providers in Westchester, a strategic growth area, as well as a small group of additional departments that expressed interest in being early adopters,” Dauer said.
That list of participants includes:
- ColumbiaDoctors Hudson Valley practice
- ColumbiaDoctors Medical Group practice
- ColumbiaDoctors Primary Care (North Star and Morningside practices)
- Obstetrics & Gynecology’s Scarsdale practice
- Orthopedic Surgery
- Otolaryngology Head & Neck Surgery
- Rehabilitation & Regenerative Medicine
Online scheduling functionality is currently operational on DocASAP’s website, as well as on columbiadoctors.org. DocASAP will be rolling out the functionality to their third-party partners in the coming weeks. This feature will help to increase access also by boosting our providers’ search rankings in Google, which owns approximately 80 percent of the search market. Although search rankings will gradually increase over time, “some doctors are already live on Google search results,” Dauer said.
When the rollout is complete, and an individual searches for a medical provider in Google, the search results panel on the right of the page will include the ability to schedule right from the page. Clicking on that link takes the user to the DocASAP website to complete the scheduling process.
Patients will find that booking an appointment is straightforward and simple, Dauer said.
They can search by specialty, location, insurance or visit reason; or they can start with a doctor and then choose among a list of visit reasons that is customized for each doctor. When patients book their first appointment using DocASAP, they will create an account (using their email and a password) that will keep track of all their past and future appointments and send confirmations and reminders.
We can also add additional workflow questions for patients to answer, such as “are you a new patient” or “are you feeling sick” in order to ensure that patients are seen by the right provider and with the correct visit type in GE/IDX, she said.
To date, 51 appointments have been made using DocASAP. Leading the pack in appointments booked to date are dermatology and primary care providers, followed by orthopedics, otolaryngology, obstetrics and gynecology, and rehab medicine.