According to estimates, losses caused by missed appointments lead to costing the U.S. healthcare system $150 billion annually. It makes doctor appointment apps a timely innovation born by necessity and offers a solid reason why medical booking apps stand out among medical e-products on the fast-evolving mHealth app market expected to reach an astounding number of $57.57 billion by 2026.
The in-depth analysis shows that online medicine booking apps and doctor appointment scheduling apps demonstrate unique abilities to reduce time of waiting for patients, bridging the gap between healthcare practitioners and customers and delivering services beyond clinic appointment booking that we discuss below.
Doctor appointment apps: Target Audience
Doctor appointment scheduling apps are designed to bring patients closer to doctors, which stretches the demand for medical booking apps among both medical practitioners and healthcare customers alike.
However, the major consumers of medical scheduling app service are:
Among lots of apps providing a streamlined experience for patients to book appointments, there are several key players worth considering as examples of apps meeting consumers’ expectations at best:
One of the most popular applications falling under the category of 24/7 access providers to a full database of medical practices and doctors' schedules.
The app has an easy to navigate menu for guiding the user in guaranteed booking of an appointment with the relevant healthcare provider. It offers access to the honest non-censored reviews of doctors in the database and thoroughly checks on legitimacy of partnering providers.
Doctor on Demand
It is a recognized runner up on the market. Being great advocates of preventing care, they mainly focus on the idea of wellness, which attracted over a million app users.
The app offers an upfront pricing, multi-layered support on mobile, 24/7 availability and access to service of more than a thousand boarded physicians on the app panel.
A great app highly recognized for achieving deep patient engagement and, overall impeccable delivery of service in telemedicine. It offers its users video visits, access to doctors’ profiles, text chats, getting prescriptions and archiving lab test results. It is a HIPAA-compliant technology of high quality.
The app is available on iOS and Android and aims at British healthcare customers. Scheduling and actual consultation can be set in a minute, even if it's a weekend or bank holiday. Besides, with an app, a user can get a prescription and process it at the nearest pharmacy. On average, appointments cost £30.
Ultimately, doctor appointment scheduling app can successfully address the issues associated with pain points patients usually have in medical scheduling:
- Spotting the local healthcare providers
- Identifying pharmaceutical services providers available in vicinity
- Filtering specialists by majors, ratings and reviews, and by day-to-day availability;
- Booking an appointment in online or offline mode.
How To Monetize Your Doctor Appointment App
By embracing potentially huge audiences, apps to make a doctor appointment have the myriad of opportunities in terms of monetization. In particular, monetization of doctor appointment solutions include but not limit to the following options:
- Providing a subscription-based model of access
- Offering online-video paid consultations
- Giving third party organizations or clinics a permission to access your doctor on-demand app
- Displaying ads for clinics or pharmacies
- Offering extra on-demand services including paid offerings for enterprises
- Offering paid service for urgent bookings.
- Enabling consumers to access paid memberships with the option of unlocking premium services
- Charging commission based on doctors’ fees.
Benefits For Patients and Doctors
With a new trend for expansion of remote service, it comes as no surprise that the number of virtual visits related to healthcare rises dramatically and, thus, requires reliable booking service to ensure making doctor appointments easy and low friction.
Applying medical booking apps equally benefit healthcare practitioners and patients.
The advantages for doctors include:
- Digital presence (under the pandemic due the restrictions on physical presence, the online access is a key factor in managing medical practice)
- Expanding the medical practice by growing patients base
- Providing an enhanced experience to healthcare customers
- Resource saving
- Time saving on admin routine and paperwork.
The advantages for healthcare service consumers include:
- Huge reduce in waiting time
- Instant access to the best-rated medical professionals
- 24/7 support
- Access to multiple options in consulting (by video or texts including audio messaging).
- Cost and time saving.
The Feature Set Of Your App
The online medicine booking apps include three types according to user roles: Patient, Doctor and Admin. Let’s dive in detailed descriptions of features essential for each of the types.
On the basis of Patient App, main features can be segmented into booking, profile management and more advanced functionality.
- Easy login
How it works: Due to sensitivity of health-related data, the app should provide an easy but secure login with a variety of options to choose from (a phone number, email, Google account, etc.).
- User profile
How it works: Patient profile should mandate the personal information and an option of giving permission to access data for the doctor.
- Appointment booking
How it works: A patient-oriented scheduling should provide easy-to-see slots containing all the necessary information on doctors’ availability alongside options of booking time, days, dates, cancellation policies, etc.
How it works: Notification badges help stay aware of important updates and information.
- In-app chat
How it works: Using an option in the app menu, patients get in touch with the medical professional and consult on steps toward an instant solution of their problem or an actual appointment.
- Find Your Doctor
How it works: Integrating easy-to-navigate maps will direct your patients in spotting doctor offices or clinics hassle-free. With the more advanced functionality, the app can offer the patients to build a route from their location to the nearest clinic.
- Payment In App
How it works: An in-app payment system enables instant access to service and streamline billing . Automatic payment for consultations is vital for proper functioning of .
- Review and Rate Access
How it works: Easy access to rating systems as well as the option to make comments can facilitate scheduling and assist in patient engagement with the app.
- Ask Your Doctor
How it works: Being able to ask simple health-related questions or check on symptoms of disease at early stages may be a game changer for medical service providers and patients alike and serve as the effective means of taking preventive measures in healthcare.
How it works: Save patients’ favorite health providers in one place for facilitating booking next time.
Additionally, advanced features include:
- Set search radius
How it works: Users should have an additional option for searching for trusted GPs, dentists, etc. within a set radius in case of necessity to make an actual visit.
- Health trackers
How it works: Offer reminders and alerts patients on taking medications and refilling prescriptions.
- Insurance Cards and Treatment History Management
How it works: The app can provide an option to add patient private and public health insurance numbers to eliminate hassle of carrying documents. Additionally, there can be an option to scan and save patient medical records.
On the basis of Doctor App, the must-have features are as follows:
- Doctor profile
How it works: Doctors should have an option to create a module implying frequent updates. The critical data within the profile includes doctor’s speciality, clinic location, photo gallery and review columns alongside real-time analytics for doctors’ convenience in managing their medical practice.
- Check on Appointment Status
How it works: The app should have an appointment status tab and a fully-functioning appointment email, phone or app reminders to prevent missed appointments.
- Edition of Booking Slots
How it works: There should be built-in functionality, preferably intuitive and graphic rich for operations on a functional calendar and managing appointment booking.
- Accept/Reject Booking
How it works: To optimize booking, doctors should have the option for providing instant feedback when it comes to scheduling and accept or reject booking requests.
- In-app Chat
How it works: Patients expect that doctors are going to be available on HD-video functioning platforms with access to audio and chat integration.
- Online prescription
How it works: Doctors should have an option to prescribe a needed medicine directly in the app. It will streamline the process, and patients will be able to order the prescriptions from preferred pharmacies.
Besides, it is recommended that doctors could:
- Log in with their social media profiles
- Choose among several options when setting their availability for booking
- Get instant access to patient treatment history and viewing patient details
- Operate with eBilling and payment gateways to form a bill and secure payment directly through the app.
Powerful Admin Panel is web-based and lists the must-have features as below:
- Secure login
- Options for patient profile management
- Options for doctor profile management
- Booking management options
- Management of reports
- Approval for doctor profile
- Management of ads on the app.
How To Make An App That Succeeds
Steps of developing a doctor booking application imply:
- Task definition/Discovery phase
At this stage, you explore the market, conduct competitors search and analysis, set business goals and outline models. It results in shaping the guidelines for project requirements.
This stage is followed by:
- Creation of a feature list with detailed feature set description
- Prototyping and UI/UX design
- Development and Testing.
Overall, the project would be divided into the following parts:
- iOS application development
- Android application development
- Web-based admin panel development
- Server and backend development.
The tech stack of your app may include:
Front-end development: Angular, ReactJS
Back-end development: Node.js, PHP, Phyton; database - Postgres, MySQL, MongoDB
Mobile development: Android - Java, iOS - Swift
Multiple payment modes: Braintree, PayPal, Stripe
Map integration and user location tracking: Google Maps API, MapKit, CoreLocation
Push notifications: Push.io, Twilio
In-app calling and messaging: Twilio
Cloud environment: Google, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure.
As the final development point, the previous stage is followed by app launch, which means your app became a new medical e-product ready for install on customers’ devices.
How Much It Costs To Build A Good Doctor Appointment App
The development costs are conditioned by a host of factors at work. In particular, the price comprises of:
- Features and functionalities of the app
- Development Platform: iOS, Android, or cross-platform development
- Third-party API integrations
- UI and UX design: choosing among simple, medium, or rich will make the price vary
- Certifications and compliances to observe
- Development partner location that makes an impact on hiring rates
- Size of the development team (ideally, the team should include Project manager, Backend developers, UI/UX designer, Frontend developer, Android developers, iOS developers, QA engineers).
On average, developing a mobile healthcare application like ZocDoc takes from six to eight months, with the price ranging from $35,000 and above.
Under any scenario, the partnership with professionals in software development service is a must for catering to your needs and bringing the expected results.
HealthSync - Healthcare app for medication management, doctor’s appointments and symptoms tracking.
Anytime Caring - Australia’s leading peer-to-peer platform that allows independent care workers to connect directly with the aged community.
TeleTherapy - A telemedicine platform for children with scheduling appointments functionality.
Digital solutions give healthcare consumers a new level of experience in the domain of scheduling doctor appointments, and the high dynamics of the market suggests further growth, which makes the demand for medical booking app development service rise.
With CodeIT that has proved its technical and business expertise by successful completion of projects of similar scope, you will get not only high quality of healthcare software development service but guaranteed customer satisfaction.