If you want to start a telehealth service with next to no capital, there are a few ways to do it. Providing your clients the ability to text or email photos, videos, and descriptions of problems to you is an easy way to get your telehealth program up and running fast.
Pros: Easy and cheap to start, can iterate and improve your systems quickly.
Cons: Not as organized, won’t integrate with PMS, harder to collect payments
Here are a few easy solutions:
- Grab a pre-paid cell phone; include the number on your website, on marketing on your front desk, and email it to your clients as the “telehealth” line.
- Keep your own phone and use Google Voice– allows multiple people to have access to the business number, which rings directly to your own phones. For $10, it’s a great alternative to buying another phone AND allowing multiple people in multiple places all have access to the same line.
- Allow for online booking on your website into a google calendar for a facetime, skype, or zoom call (this is a free widget with a lot of websites). Include pricing on the website so it’s transparent before booking. You can record the whole interaction (make sure to tell the client you are recording) and save each video for reference if needed.
- Start a new email: “firstname.lastname@example.org”- just for your clients and patients. Have an auto-reply (A vet nurse will be reviewing your case in the next hour! If this case requires a veterinarian, there will be a $30 charge for medical review. We’ll get back to you soon.) Have an assistant or RVT triage the emails.
- Try a company like Chatlio. They come in a little pricier with different subscription plans, but they can provide a great solution. Chatlio puts a custom chat box directly on to your website. You can then answer chats directly from slack– which means you or anyone on your team can answer client questions, have full transparency into responses, and more.
*Remember: every telehealth interaction should be properly recorded in the medical record. You’ll need to manually create records for these interactions.