Magazine article CRM Magazine

IVR Is the Right Prescription for a Native American Health System: Muscogee Creek Nation's Enacomm Solution Overcomes the Challenge of Spiking Call Volumes

Magazine article CRM Magazine

IVR Is the Right Prescription for a Native American Health System: Muscogee Creek Nation's Enacomm Solution Overcomes the Challenge of Spiking Call Volumes

Article excerpt

Due to the rapid growth of healthcare needs across its Native American population, pharmacy personnel at the Muscogee Creek Nation Department of Health couldn't effectively manage its increasing call volume. Up until about a year ago, pharmacy workers at the tribal health system, which operates two hospitals and six clinics across a 12-county area south of Tulsa, Okla., couldn't answer all of the calls coming in during the day, with many customers having to leave messages. Callers after hours had to leave messages that then had to be tackled each morning. Over the weekend, the system often maxed out, and many who called couldn't even leave messages at all.

In addition to the volume of messages, which could number 40 or more on any given day, pharmacy personnel struggled with messages that were often hard to understand, requiring them to call back the party to verify information.

"We were just getting inundated with calls. It was an administrative nightmare," recalls Robert Coffey, chief information officer at the Muscogee Creek Nation Department of Health. "It was so much work just for a simple prescription refill."

Thanks to an interactive voice response (IVR) system from Enacomm, Muscogee Creek has been able to tame unmanageable call volumes and voicemails. That IVR solution, which went live about a year ago, now every week processes more than 5,000 prescription refill requests that previously would have been handled manually. The average call covers roughly five prescription medicines, and the system handles each without a hitch, according to Coffey.

"Enacomm's real-time prescription-ordering solution greatly enhances the customer ordering experience," added Sid Daniel, administrator of the Muscogee Creek Department of Health, in a statement. "We're processing far more requests than I anticipated. Enacomm's IVR solution is ... a game-changer."

The hosted solution is available 24/7 to automatically collect, validate, and submit prescription refill requests directly into Muscogee Creek's ProPharma pharmacy management system.

This has saved the local pharmacies hundreds of personnel hours each month in voicemail transcribing and data entry, according to Daniel.

The IVR provides the operating hours for each of the pharmacies, and callers can even enter their addresses to have prescriptions mailed to them instead of having to pick them up. …

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