5 Questions asked for an emergency situation
Where are you located?
At what telephone number can you be reached?
What are the chief symptoms?
When did they start?
Has this happened before?
Are you alone?
Do you have transportation?
Procedure for transferring a phone call
Always ask the patient's permission to place him or her on hold and to transfer the call. Identify the person on the phone when call is transferred to the physician or another person in the facility. It is considered poor customer service to transfer the call to a co-worker's voice mail without warning the caller that the person is not available. Any person who refuses to give a name should not be put through unless the medical assistant has been specifically instructed to do so. If the person is not immediately available, ask the caller whether he or she would prefer to be put through to voice mail. Some callers simple believe their call will recieve more attention if a human takes the message. If the caller insists, take a written message and deliver it to the proper person as soon as possible.
Steps for if caller refuses to identify themself
The individual could be a patient, so every attempt should be made to identify the patient and assist him or her. Such callers may also be salespeople who are fully aware that if their identity is revealed, they will never get the opportunity to speak to the physician. These people may be firmly told, Dr. Frank is busy with a patient and has asked that we take messages for her. If you will not leave a message, you may want to write her a letter and mark it Personal.
7 Components of a proper telephone message
The name of the person to whom the call is directed.
The name of the person calling.
The caller's daytime, evening, and or cell phone numbers.
The reason for the call.
The action to be taken.
The date and time of the call.
The intials of the person taking the call.