The A-Z of Healthcare chatbots

The A-Z of Healthcare chatbots

healthcare chatbots

“A country is only as strong as its Healthcare system

Healthcare systems have turned out to be one of the biggest weaknesses for most of the countries after COVID-19. This has brought all the focus on healthcare systems and the need to rapidly upgrade the systems globally.

To catch up, not only do Healthcare organizations need to evolve but need to do so at a rate that can outpace the threat of large-scale healthcare crises in the future. To achieve such a goal the first step has to be the adoption of modern technology in the healthcare sector across countries.

Multiple evolving solutions have use cases for healthcare organizations such as medical robotics, machine vision, nanotech, AI, etc. Out of these, the most promising and result-oriented option that can be adopted right away is AI-based solutions. 

In simple terms, AI-based solutions are software that can understand complex problems and adapt accordingly to provide immediate answers that would not be possible if humans were to solve problems of such nature. This software helps in saving precious time for the healthcare professionals helping them take care of the patients better as well as cutting down on lead time in the formulation of new medicines and drugs that can cure life-threatening diseases.

One such AI-based solution that has multiple applications and is easy to use, available for the healthcare industry is a chatbot

A Quick Rundown 

Healthcare chatbots are bleeding-edge medical techs used for seamless services. Medical professionals might not reach and test everyone who shows signs of infection. As a result, utilizing AI bots could speed up and streamline the screening process thereby saving time and money. 

The saved time can be utilized to provide more attention to patients. Healthcare chatbots are a ready solution to many problems that the healthcare sector is facing especially after the pandemic.The chatbots can be used by individual healthcare professionals such as doctors and nurses or clinics and hospitals. They are fully customizable ,and can help with booking appointments, meetings, dosage reminders, virtual assistants and much more. Healthcare professionals and institutions that are using them already will get far ahead in the race to delight their patients.Using AI based chatbots in healthcare would go a long way in revolutionizing the industry.

Chatbots and their different types 

healthcare chatbot types

A chatbot is software that can simulate conversations like humans. It can converse with customers, send automated SMS, book meetings, set reminders, and perform other such tasks that require minimal human interaction. Using a chatbot for customer service lets an organization be available to the customers round the clock and it saves precious time and money. To add to it, Chatbots can be customized according to the needs of the customers!

Types of Chatbots

There are two types of chatbots available

  • Rule-based  
  • AI-based. 

Rule-based chatbots function based on a set of predefined rules which is also their biggest limitation while AI-based chatbots are more dynamic and get trained continuously as they interact with more and more people.

For healthcare, chatbots can be classified a bit differently as below.

Types of healthcare chatbots

In healthcare, there are three fundamental types of chatbots: prescriptive, conversational, and informative. These three offer different types of solutions, have different levels of communication, and have different conversational styles.

  • Prescriptive Chatbots

Even though prescriptive chatbots are designed to be conversational. They are intended not only to provide direction or answers but also to provide therapeutic remedies. The remedies and medicinal suggestions are pre-fed to the chatbot. The healthcare chatbot can then take care of the common customer queries and suggest remedies.

  • Conversational Chatbots

Conversational chatbots are designed to be context-sensitive tools that respond based on the user’s intent. Conversational chatbots can provide more than pre-built answers and better comprehend the context. This is because these chatbots consider the entire discussion rather than analyzing statements in isolation. 

An AI-based chatbot can closely mimic human interactions. Chatbots using technologies such as NLU (Natural Language Understanding), NLP (Natural Language Processing), are used by conversational chatbots to grasp human intent and language. When deployed in healthcare, such chatbots can understand the intent of the patient and the seriousness of the case suggesting remedies as well as triggering alerts to the healthcare staff if an emergency case is

  • Informative Chatbots 

Users can get important information from chatbots in the form of breaking news, notifications, and pop-ups. Typically, these bots provide automated customer service and data. Such Chatbots are also used by mental health and health news websites to assist them to acquire more specific information about a topic. These can also help inform patients about disease breakouts and relevant medicinal information.

 Uses of Chatbots in Healthcare

Everything being said, why are chatbots the perfect solution for healthcare organizations and professionals?

Well, because they can serve as virtual assistants for several things. Healthcare chatbots can be used to automate customer service queries, book meetings, carry out other bookings and appointments. Deploying a chatbot in a healthcare system frees up the workforce to take care of other important activities such as taking care of patients.

On the other hand, Patients can book appointments with the doctor, for vaccination, get information about various medical conditions and also get relevant information regarding the availability of beds, ventilators, etc. straight from the hospital’s website instantly, Using a chatbot for healthcare not only helps save time but also prevents the spread of misinformation as patients can obtain relevant information easily.

 AI in healthcare can have some incredible uses, as mentioned below:

  • Health Tracking
tracking health with healthcare chatbots

Patients who require regular medical assistance can hugely benefit from healthcare chatbots. Medical providers, for example, can use bots to connect patients and doctors. Such chatbots can provide a complete history of health issues and assist in analyzing the effects of prescribed drugs.

  • Client Service or Administration

When you visit practically any website these days, you’ll find a chatbot ready to assist you with website navigation or resolving a minor issue. Similarly, chatbots can assist users in navigating healthcare services from a provider. Chatbots can send out reminders, plan appointments, and may as well assist with the refilling of prescription medications in the future. 

  • Employment and Training

Large healthcare organizations are often hiring and onboarding new workers. They usually end up producing a lot of documentation that needs filling out and credentials that need to be double-checked while processing these applications. Connecting chatbots to these facilities will make HR departments’ jobs easier.

New hires, for example, might subscribe to healthcare chatbots and integrate into the onboarding process for new employees or receive information about the company. Chatbots provide files to new employees as needed, can help new employees to complete their formalities, and automate a variety of other tasks such as requests for leaves.

  • Mental Health

Different bots offer a humanized experience to make consumers feel as if they are conversing with a real person. For many people, simply being able to talk about how they feel and any health issues they may be experiencing proves beneficial and helps improve their mental health.

Patients in such situations can use a conversational health bot as a way to talk about their feelings. If their needs exceed the bot’s capabilities, a healthcare professional can simply take over and intervene while keeping track of the chatbots and patient interactions.

  • Patient Involvement

Healthcare Chatbots are designed to not only capture but also pique patients’ interest in their care by converting phone conversations into questions in the hopes of increasing results. 

Doctors will sometimes tell patients to keep a notebook and then return a week later. Tech-savvy people, on the other hand, will not wait for something to be discussed in a week. People will do it if you make it easier for them by providing something useful, relatable, and enjoyable. In an on-demand era, patients have a lot of expectations from every service provider and healthcare systems are more frequently faced with such demands. The use of an AI-based healthcare chatbot can help meet the patients’ expectations.

  • FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
medical chatbot faqs

One of the most prevalent components of any customer service system is the FAQs. These are routine and repeat queries that the customers have. And typically in a healthcare system, such queries are more frequent. Such FAQs can be easily automated using healthcare chatbots 

Chatbots can respond to questions such as what the payment rates are, which documents are required for treatment, what the business hours are, and how much the insurance covers based on pre-fed data. This is how a chatbot works as a one-stop shop for answering all fundamental questions in seconds. Patients don’t have to call the clinic or waste time navigating the website to get the information they need.

  • Billing and Claims

Nobody likes dealing with medical bills, insurance companies, or claims. Fortunately, AI chatbots in healthcare can assist with these tasks. Health bots can check current coverage, assist with filing claims, and follow the status of those claims. Furthermore, these healthcare chatbots can assist doctors with billing questions and pre-authorization procedures, saving unnecessary hassles for healthcare professionals as well as customers.

Benefits of healthcare chatbots

healthcare chatbot benefits

Healthcare services can employ and benefit from AI-enabled chatbots in a variety of ways. The following are the advantages of having healthcare chatbots:

  • Scalable

You must hire extra individuals when a human employee receives a large number of inquiries. Chatbots can handle multiple interactions simultaneously thereby saving costs.

  • Easy Patient Access

Patients do not need to visit hospitals during regular business hours for small issues as information will be available 24 hours if a chatbot is used

  • Cost-Efficient

Healthcare chatbots can save up to save $3.6 billion globally annually with their features and uses.

  • No Missed Appointments

On average, a missed visit costs a medical provider $200. Patients are less likely to forget if they receive reminder messages from healthcare chatbots.

  • Generate Leads

Healthcare chatbots can increase brand awareness and increase the number of leads by processing an unlimited number of queries simultaneously thereby providing fantastic customer service and lead conversion.

  • Automates Data Deployment

Data that has to enable chatbot distribution can send whenever required. Furthermore, the transaction can transfer to a human whenever necessary.

  • Provides Quick Information

Healthcare chatbots can assist with both patient encounters and internal record-keeping. Many institutions use AI that gathers important data and alerts healthcare professionals when essential.

Healthcare is one of the largest business sectors with fewer human resources to cater to patients. Using a healthcare chatbot lets the organization be available to customers round the clock.

  • Delivering unique value

Modern medical institutes operate in a competitive market, and developing and delivering a unique value offer is never easy. One of the major benefits of developing healthcare chatbots for medical institutions’ websites is that these AI bots can boost the institute’s brand identification.

The use of artificial intelligence (AI) to manage patient communications is no longer frowned upon. Rather, medical companies that develop a chatbot for their websites and social media channels are becoming known for being technologically forward-thinking. 

  • Adapts to the needs of healthcare patients
book appointments with healthcare chatbots

As information and support become more readily available, patients are becoming more committed to ensuring that they get the most out of their medical care. Medical establishments must anticipate and answer the individual demands of their customers. This markets their services and builds a reputation for offering tailored and competent medical care.

Using healthcare chatbots has emerged as a viable option for medical organizations in light of the foregoing. Healthcare chatbots can have one-on-one interactions with patients who visit the company’s website. They may also recognize each patient’s particular complaints and requests based on the accuracy and detail of their script, and take the appropriate approach to provide them with the assistance they require. This leads to more customized interactions and more satisfied customers.

  • Securing an up-to-date online presence

Medical websites are generally data-heavy, making it nearly impossible to optimize them in real-time to match changing patient needs. As a result, medical organizations frequently construct their websites as stand-alone projects, which they subsequently update in stages over time. As a result, there’s a chance that websites will become outdated compared with patient preferences. Medical organizations that develop a chatbot can avoid this issue.

Healthcare chatbots learn from their interactions with patients and can provide real-time feedback on website optimizations and enhancements. Medical institutes can also utilize chatbots to collect feedback from their website visitors regularly. Either through survey questions or by analyzing chat transcripts. As a result, chatbot development aids medical companies in maintaining an up-to-date online presence, which promotes their brand and builds confidence.

  • Fully customizable

Apart from the above-listed uses, chatbots can be readily customized for individual doctors such as heart specialists, neurosurgeons, general physicians or nurses, clinics, or may be used by a large hospital. Whats’more, a healthcare professional can use a ready-to-use template and spend almost zero time installing a chatbot. This unique ability makes chatbots a one-stop-shop solution for the healthcare industry.

Concerns surrounding Chatbots in Healthcare

The main concern regarding healthcare chatbots is HIPAA compliance and data security. Critics believe that data captured by chatbots can be stolen, tempered by hackers or other such notorious entities. But such apprehensions can be easily addressed by chatbot-maker companies. Most of the chatbots such as BotPenguin’s chatbot available in the market are so secure that anytime an application for compliance can be filed and it will be granted in no time.

 Future of healthcare chatbots

future of healthcare chatbots

With technology evolving at a blistering pace, the future of AI can only be imagined and not perceived. We’ll see more comprehensive healthcare chatbot solutions appear on the market in the future. A chatbot, for example, can assist users in checking their symptoms and, based on the diagnosis, scheduling an appointment, answering questions, and even providing direct telemedicine consultation with a doctor via video chat. 

When it comes to AI and other creative technical solutions, the healthcare industry has a lot of room for growth. The number of healthcare providers looking into innovative ways to streamline their procedures and reduce wait times is expanding. The applications of AI in healthcare have no limits and it is safe to say that the healthcare industry will no longer be the same once AI-based solutions become mainstream.

With multiple clients in the healthcare industry, BotPenguin’s healthcare chatbot is already helping doctors, nurses and organizations change the way they do business and treat patients. If you also want to save money, delight your patients by giving them more time, smooth service, and be available 24*7 to them then try BotPenguin now.

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