What is Healthcare BPO?

Healthcare BPO (Business Process Outsourcing) is when a healthcare provider or organization outsources some or all of its business processes remotely. The remote work is usually done in countries such as India or the Philippines due to the lower cost of labor. Because of this, BPO companies carry a stigma of simply being a cost reduction decision.

But as the global healthcare market continues to expand, the leading healthcare companies all utilize healthcare BPO partners as part of their strategy to deliver patient care, member satisfaction, and customer service.

If your organization is considering healthcare BPO as an option or has a history of bad experiences with a traditional BPO, debunking these myths should help.

5 Myths about Healthcare BPO

Myth #1: Inability to handle complex clinical workflows.

There are certain tasks that require in-person clinicians, but most of these are related to bedside or in-home care. The healthcare industry continues to introduce new technology and value-based care that requires clinicians to occupy positions outside of the typical hospital setting. The problem? The U.S. doesn’t have enough nurses for all these positions.

Fortunately, countries like the Philippines invested in teaching U.S. nursing practices to a large amount of their population which created a surplus of qualified nurses. That means nurses who work for BPO companies already have a great foundation of clinical decision-making to handle complex clinical workflows remotely.

Myth #2: Employees are in harsh working conditions.

The stigma of “offshoring” in the U.S. usually summons images of harsh factory environments. Healthcare BPO workplaces are much different. The reality is that the Healthcare BPO industry is extremely competitive which strengthens recruitment and retention practices. High quality BPO companies invest in their employees by making their company a great place to work to maintain high retention rates.

Here’s an inside look at a Healthcare BPO facility for comparison:

Myth #3: Not as secure and compliant as U.S. healthcare companies.

When setup correctly, a Healthcare BPO facility is just as secure as their U.S. clients. In some cases, they may be even more secure. There are healthcare data breaches in the headlines more often than we’d like, and it’s usually due to careless practices or lack of procedures from internal staff – not external.

Because facilities aren’t in the U.S., they’re usually held to the highest standard of security. As a bonus, look for Healthcare BPO partners that have certain security and compliance certifications such as HITRUST, URAC, and HIPAA Audits.

Myth #4: You can’t use Healthcare BPO partners for telehealth services because of accents.

This is a myth caused by a perception of telephonic services from traditional BPO companies in India. The assumption is that anyone from outside the U.S. is going to have a quick and thick accent that’s difficult to understand over the phone which is ironic since the U.S. is a melting pot of nationalities and accents. What you hear from someone in the Northeast is vastly different from the Southeast.

When it comes to healthcare, BPO companies invest in countries like the Philippines that are English-educated. The top BPO companies also have tests for telephonic capability and provide accent neutralization training. That means BPO telehealth nurses might be easier to understand than many domestic phone agents.

Myth #5: It’s difficult to manage a team on the other side of the world.

With today’s technology and global reach, it shouldn’t be. The best BPO Partners make your remote team feel like an extension of your domestic team with a U.S. liaison to navigate every step of an outsourced relationship. There should always be transparency in the work as if that team was sitting on the other side of your office. This is one of the myths that only gets debunked if you choose a trusted outsource partner.

If you’d like to learn more about how Healthcare BPO can help your organization, contact Shearwater Health today!