HCN to offer integrated online appointments in PracSoft

Health Communication Network (HCN) will offer an integrated online appointments booking module that is fully integrated into its PracSoft practice management system when it releases its planned update at the end of the year.

HCN CEO Phil Offer said the company had built the module in-house following customer feedback, but has also built an application programming interface (API) that will allow practices to continue using third-party appointment booking services if they wish.

“Obviously there are a number of [appointment booking systems] out there but customers have been saying to us for a while that they want one that is integrated into the program, particularly if they want to manage their existing customer appointments,” Mr Offer said.

“They wanted to see if they could do that from directly within PracSoft. They can still use their existing system but we've built a new API which will allow the other appointment aggregators to work directly with PracSoft, so the customer can manage appointments from the one user interface.”

Practices will be able to display the online appointments on their own websites, but if they don't have one, HCN will host a web page on the practice's behalf, which can then provide the link to patients.

Mr Offer said practices can choose which doctors' appointments to display or to display the doctor's name but not their appointments if they are not seeing new patients. If practices are looking for new patients, they can continue to use the other services.

“With our customers now, a lot of them do use a couple of online appointment systems, and that is why we have built the API as well,” he said. “We expect them to continue to use other services to get to new patients. We see it as a platform in that they can use whatever service they want, but we are now providing them with some more choice.”

HCN is also updating its clinical information system Medical Director in the planned summer release, which should be available at the end of the year.

Practices interested in the online booking system can pre-register on the HCN website.

Posted in Australian eHealth

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