IndyVet is one of the largest animal hospitals in the state of Indiana. Operating a 24-hour emergency veterinary hospital alongside seven specialty services including Critical Care, Internal Medicine, Neurology, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Surgery, and Rehabilitation services is a massive undertaking. With 135 employees, including 30 veterinarians working in emergency and critical referral cases across 24 exam rooms, IndyVet has a crucial need for clear communication with pet owners and speed of service throughout a large team.
“In the last year, there’s been a big demand for the ability to reach out and chat with clients that didn’t involve a phone line or app that they had to download.”
With their new client communication solution, phone ceased from ringing off the hook
From paper-heavy to paperless
As the Director of Emergency Service, Dr. Kelly Robertson is tasked with providing high-quality pet care promptly for a very busy emergency room, operating 24/7. When she began her role at IndyVet in 2011, she noticed the software they were using wasn’t up to that task, “[The system] was just not able to meet any of the needs that we have… I made it my mission to either get rid of that software or to make it better.” Dr Robertson accomplished this goal when IndyVet made the switch to ezyVet in 2014 as one of ezyVet’s early adopters. “We were coming from a pretty paper-heavy system, so we just went all the way and said, ‘We’re going completely paperless,’ and even though it was going to be a scary big change, it would still be easier than what we were doing.”
Structure for repetitive tasks
Using a cloud-based practice management system meant that doctors could complete their records at their own time from home, rather than have them sit by a computer after a shift. Integrations such as diagnostics eliminated double entry as information flowed from the machine to the clinical within ezyVet. There was no need to spend hours reviewing invoices with handwritten code sheets as this charge capture was handled automatically through ezyVet’s billing triggers. Furthermore, ezyVet’s templates provided the structure for the team to create notes without having to rewrite them all out. Gone are the days where doctors typed long discharge notes on Word prior to copying and pasting them into the system.
Free communication tools aren’t usually the best
After using ezyVet for many years, the need for more efficient client and team communication had become evident with the rise of curbside, contactless payments, and telemedicine consultations and follow-ups. Piecing together multiple free apps like Zoom, Docusign, iMessage, etc. slowed the process down, adding time and frustration for both staff and clients alike due to limited user permissions and personal privacy.
More appointment demand, tying up phone lines, longer wait times
The past year has forced the veterinary industry to adapt in a variety of ways. Most veterinary clinics of all sizes saw increased appointment demand and longer patient wait times. If necessity is the mother of invention, this year provided ample need and opportunity for change.
IndyVet realized communicating with clients and keeping everyone on the same page becoming increasingly difficult. Client communication was becoming very cumbersome for front desk staff and it became very overwhelming for doctors and technicians to keep in the loop on who they need to talk to next. “Our business definitely has increased and we were just overwhelmed at our front desk with phones ringing and people having long wait times. In the last year, there’s been a big demand for the ability to reach out and chat with clients that didn’t involve a phone line or app that they had to download.” Dr. Robertson recalls.
“We have a lot of clients that don’t even have a smartphone so being able to have something [we can use] without them needing to go that extra step was one of our big items on our wish list.”
Solving the issue with the Otto Flow integration
When picking a communication tool, IndyVet needed a solution that could stop their front desk phones from ringing off-the-hook and handle all the different aspects of the workflow in one location. IndyVet found that Otto was a way to communicate with clients that did not require front desk phone lines so that those can remain open. Specialty services are now able to hold recheck appointments that could be done via telemedicine, instead of having the client make the trip in. It was important to have the ability to have real-time chat with clients, whether they’re waiting on site or at home when their pet is hospitalized. These features were very much needed to be incorporated into their existing workflow.
In addition to requiring a variety of telemedicine features, the communication solution needed to be accessible without an app. Dr. Robertson says, “While Otto is very easy to use on our end, it also needed to be for our clients. We have a lot of clients that don’t even have a smartphone so being able to have something [we can use] without them needing to go that extra step was one of our big items on our wish list.”
“The integration was a lot easier than I thought it was going to be and the training was as well. Our doctors wanted it, so as soon as we made it available, they jumped on it!”
The results of integrated speed
Every second counts in the ER, so an effective software integration has to do more than work, it has to work fast! The time it takes for an appointment made in ezyVet to go to Otto occurs in seconds. Doctors also do not have to replicate work on both systems as Otto communications are saved within ezyVet’s Patient or Clinical records. A few positive changes Dr. Roberston noticed since using the integration:
- Time savings “We can use the forms through Otto which was a huge relief from our front desk because once they make the appointment, they can send out the questionnaires and things ahead of time and not rely on our CSRs to do all of that.
- Keeping the team connected “Having the statuses correlate is very helpful for the whole staff to know where people are at in their appointment.”
- Keeping systems connected “Televet has followed in ezyVet’s footsteps and was able to customize it to what we need that fits best for our hospital.”
- Improved client satisfaction “Services are running more efficiently and we’re able to keep clients happier so that definitely makes them feel better. The specialty services were looking for a way to make that connection with people and being able to see them and introduce themselves and even show them with their pet… helps to build rapport and trust.”
Seamless onboarding with a new add-on
As anyone who has tried to implement new technology with a team, it’s one thing to find a solution, it’s another thing to get everyone else on board to use it properly. Fortunately, for IndyVet, the onboarding exceeded their expectations. Dr Robertson says, “The integration was a lot easier than I thought it was going to be and the training was as well. Everyone picked up on it easily as it’s pretty seamless going back and forth between [Otto and ezyVet], so it was much better than I expected. Our doctors wanted it, so as soon as we made it available, they jumped on it!”
Curious to learn more about the benefits of using a cloud-based PIMS in your clinic? Learn more about ezyVet