Key Features in a Patient Engagement Platform for Physical Therapists

Author: Paul Singh

Patients will go to another physical therapy practice if they don’t like how you communicate, arrange appointments, organize treatment, or manage their billing. Plus, poor experiences raise the risk of more canceled appointments, bad reviews, and an overall drop in revenue. This is why no PT clinic can afford to take patient engagement for granted. 

In this post, we show you how you’ll benefit from a patient engagement platform for physical therapists. You’ll learn how our platform, StrataEMR, helps clinics grow their revenue by an average of 20-30% by connecting patient engagement functionality with practice management, documentation, and revenue cycle management (RCM).

How poor patient engagement harms PT practice revenue

At its most extreme, poor patient engagement can be fatal to your clinic because it can have a huge impact on your revenue. It contributes to all the following problems:

  • Missed appointments. No-shows are a huge drain on clinic revenues, but they can be reduced just by changing the way you communicate. For example, clear appointment reminders encourage patients to show up. This cuts your missed revenue. 

  • Unsatisfied patients. Whether they’re unhappy with clunky payment processes or inconsistent billing, poor communication, or something else, unhappy patients are bad for business. They can leave negative reviews and even discourage other people in the local area from using your services. 

  • Poor patient outcomes. Unsatisfied patients are less likely to continue with their treatment—and are less likely to return for future appointments. 

  • Time-consuming processes. With the right patient engagement platform, you can automate patient communication—saving yourself hours of having to do everything manually.

  • Missing information. Poor communication with patients can result in clinicians not having the information they need for compliant documentation. This impacts your billing process. A knock-on effect is that some billers will pass denied claims back to the patient for reimbursement. This leads to payment disputes (bad for everyone). 

  • Reduced patient retention and fewer referrals. If patients aren’t satisfied, they’ll take their business to one of your competitors. 

The common denominator here is lost revenue. A profitable, growing, physical therapy practice will always take patient engagement seriously. 

How StrataEMR helps PT clinics grow through patient engagement

StrataPT has built the only platform for physical therapists that puts revenue at the heart of every process in your clinic. And that includes patient engagement

Whether you’re welcoming new patients to your practice, scheduling appointments, or gauging patient sentiment, our platform makes sure that everything you do contributes to a higher reimbursement rate and increased revenue

Here are three ways StrataEMR helps you grow by improving your patient experience:

1. Scheduling and appointment management

One of the main tasks of a patient engagement platform is to get patients to book appointments and turn up at the right time. But unfortunately, as we explained in our guide to physical therapy scheduling software, no-shows and cancellations are still a major contributor to lost revenue for lots of PT clinics. 

StrataEMR helps practices reduce their cancellations by an average of 35%. 

Here’s how you can get those results with our platform:

  • Give patients a smooth booking experience. When patients are scheduling appointments, they can see the available slots and easily choose which one works best for them. They can select where they want to see their clinician—at home, online, or at the office—and they can schedule recurring appointments, too.

  • Automatically send a reminder for each appointment via SMS. This messaging function reduces the chance that patients will miss their slot. And it’s completely automated, so clinicians or admin staff don’t have to lift a finger. 

  • Reduce cancellations by asking why patients want to cancel their appointment. Simply asking for a reason typically prompts patients to reschedule their appointment rather than cancel completely. This feature alone has reduced cancellations for some of our clients by as much as 35%. 

  • See important data about your scheduling—including no-shows and cancellation rates—broken down by practices, clinicians, and patients. 

This doesn’t just make your patients’ lives easier—it improves your practice management, too. For example, patient bookings are synced automatically with clinicians’ calendars in real-time. Therapists can view these appointments from any device, and they’ll also receive notifications about upcoming appointments (just like patients). 

2. A patient portal for easy communication and payment

Example of Client View: Consent and Policies, Benefits Confirmation, Patient Registration Form, Health Questionnaire (Balance Due: $123.45)

Patient engagement isn’t solely about booking appointments: it involves all of the different communications you have with your patient—from their initial intake to final payment.

With StrataEMR, all these communications can be managed through the same patient portal. This way, you’ll provide a clear and straightforward channel for patients to stay up-to-date with their schedule, while centralizing all the information you need to deliver patient care. 

You can do all of the following in the patient portal:

  • Ensure patients are ready for their appointment with electronic patient intake. Provide patients with all of the documentation they need to complete—including medical questionnaires and insurance details—before they come to the clinic. They can complete it all at home and submit it electronically.

    What’s more, StrataEMR also allows for patient e-signatures on intake forms (and other forms), so nothing needs to be printed out. 

  • Give patients clarity on payment information, including how much they owe, what treatment it relates to, and how they can pay. Then, they can securely pay through the portal with their credit card. Our clients find that StrataEMR’s automated balance notifications increase patient collections by 50% or more, while minimizing queries for your front desk and admin staff. 

    The StrataEMR system also improves payment transparency by drastically boosting your insurer reimbursements (to higher than 99%). Many other billing services happily pass denied claims onto patients rather than chasing every penny. With StrataEMR, not only will you reduce denied and delayed claims in the first place, but our billing team will chase every single claim, no matter how small. This means you won’t surprise patients with unexpected bills. Accurate billing, happy patients. 

  • Ask patients for feedback. Patients may be really happy with your service, or might have suggestions about what you can do better. Either way, you want to hear what they’re saying. With this information, you can address common patient complaints and show them that you’re listening to their concerns. 

Plus, by making your patient intake forms electronic, all the information they provide is automatically (and accurately) transferred into your clinical documentation and plans of care. This drastically cuts the time you spend on mundane, time-consuming admin. 

Summer, a PT and StrataPT client, says: 

We have been using Strata PT for billing, documentation, and communicating with patients for almost two years now. The program is easy to maneuver through, and the dashboard is great for communicating. The schedule is easy to work with, and the reports are very beneficial.

3. Data on patient satisfaction, marketing channels, and your finances

Metrics and Analytics with StrataPT

The more information that you have as a clinic, the better you’re able to run your practice. For example, patient feedback can give you information about how you can improve the way you manage your practice—and create more positive patient experiences into the future. 

StrataEMR brings all the information you need to improve and grow your practice together in one place. You can use it to track treatment outcomes and patient satisfactions, and to dig deep into how your clinic is performing:

  • Understand what your patients are saying about you. Our platform helps you run patient satisfaction surveys and understand the results. You can track metrics including the Net Promoter Score (NPS); the most reliable gauge of patient loyalty.

    Patients will also be automatically prompted to leave positive reviews for your clinic, on platforms including Google and Facebook.

  • Discover which marketing channels are most lucrative for your practice, including your top referral sources and most successful campaigns. This essential data will help you make smarter decisions to grow your business.

  • Get detailed insight into your clinic’s finances with Strata Clarity. For example, see billed units, visits, and dollars, patient payments, and average payment per visit. That’s alongside other financial metrics such as account receivable (AR) and your rate of reimbursement from insurers. 

Dr. Jonathan Mullis, owner of Physical Therapy Doctors of Florida, came to StrataPT after working with a number of different EMR systems, including WebPT and Clinicient. Here’s what he had to say about StrataEMR:

Strata has been by far the best experience. The customer service is far superior, and the system is clean, easy to use and intuitive. Also, I have more insight into my billing with Strata’s Clarity Panel than I have ever had, including when I was doing my billing in-house. I would highly recommend Strata, especially if you are just getting started or starting over in a new state, like myself.

StrataEMR: The only revenue-focused patient engagement platform for physical therapists

StrataEMR is the only physical therapy software that commits to helping PT clinics increase their revenue. While improving patient engagement, our software can also help you to: 

  • Reduce the number of denied reimbursement claims. Most therapy practices out there see reimbursement rates of about 80% for the treatment they issue, with the remaining 20% left on the table due to denied or delayed claims. In contrast, clinics using StrataEMR regularly see a reimbursement rate of higher than 99%.

  • Cut time spent on documentation. With a huge range of in-built templates and automated documentation, StrataEMR saves clinicians time on their paperwork. Typically, our clients reduce the time they spend on documentation by over 20%. 

  • Get visibility on all the tasks in your practice. Real-time workflows and automated task management lets you streamline your team’s workload and makes sure no business-critical tasks slip through the cracks.

Speak to an expert to learn more about what StrataPT can do for you.