Once you've followed these steps in testing PATCHS at your practice, and you're happy for more patients to start using it, you'll need to tell as many patients as possible that it's available.
If you're replacing another Online Consultation system with Patchs
If Patchs is replacing another online communication tools make sure you inform patients using these other tools about the change to PATCHS in advance. We'd recommend at least two weeks minimum.
Use multiple channels to promote Patchs to your patients
Promotion can be a gradual process and promoting PATCHS through multiple channels (e.g. text messages, telephone message, social media etc.) is most effective:
- Get every receptionist to encourage patients to use PATCHS every time they speak to a patient. When a patient calls your practice, the idea is to change their behaviour from picking up the phone to instead submitting a PATCHS request. We've written a script that works very well that your receptionists can follow when speaking to patients.
- Change your telephone message. Whenever a patient calls your practice with a non-emergency request. you can provide them with a message that they may get help quicker by logging onto PATCHS. We've written a template message you can use.
- Send a bulk message to patients. We've got template messages you could send by email or SMS.
- Tell all new patient registrations. If you have a 'welcome pack' that you give to patients when they first join your practice, you can put some information about PATCHS in there. We have a template you can use.
- Put information on your practice letterhead. You may still send letters to patients, for example when inviting them to chronic disease reviews.
- Put messages on your repeat prescriptions. You may still send some patients paper prescriptions.