11 February 2021

What booking engines have in store for COVID vaccinations

Booking Engine Clinical Admin COVID-19 Insights

General practices aren’t the only ones gearing up for phase 1b of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout – booking engines are also implementing changes to help GPs stay on top of their workload.

Last week, booking engine HotDoc announced it will be rolling out a range of additional functionalities – such as eligibility screening – to ensure the vaccine rollout goes smoothly.

Since that time, HealthEngine, Jayex (formerly Appointuit) and MyHealth1st have all released details around what they will be adding as the immunisation process begins.

MyHealth1st’s service is run via VaccineConnect, a platform specifically launched by MyHealth1st’s parent company for the Covid vaccine rollout.

There are several key functionalities which will be available over all booking engines – these include:

  • Eligibility screening, to ensure patients only book appointments during their allocated phase;
  • Pre- and post-consult communications, which will contain details around symptom reporting and on-the-day protocol;
  • and Inventory management, to ensure each practice will have stock to immunise each patient who books.

HotDoc, HealthEngine and Jayex all confirmed plans to implement both digitised consent forms if needed, and multi-provider bookings which would allow patients to book both a GP and a practice nurse.

HealthEngine, Jayex and Vaccineconnect will be integrating Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) reporting capabilities into their software, as well as creating simple methods for patients to identify which practices will be giving the vaccine.

HealthEngine have also announced a new patient appointment management system specifically tailored to pharmacy, which will integrate MedAdvisor’s pharmacy platform and allow for automatic submission of the vaccine encounter to AIR.

Dr Marcus Tan, CEO and founder of HealthEngine, said that ultimately the booking services industry is mainly interested in ensuring the best possible outcomes for the Australian public.

“Are there going to be challenges? Absolutely,” Dr Tan told Wild Health.

“The timeframes are insane, but we get it – it’s hard, but the various booking systems are all pulling together.”

Medicare integrationUnsureNoYesYes
Patient eligibility screeningYesYesYesYes
Multiple provider bookingsYesYesYesNo
Multiple patient bookings for one timeslotUnsureUnsureYesYes
Digital consent formsYesYesYesYes
AIR integrationUnsureYesYesYes
Inventory managementYesYesYesYes
Directory of COVID-19 vaccination centresUnsureYesYesYes
Pre and post-appointment communicationsYesYesYesYes
Additional training materials and patient infoYesUnsureYesYes
Summery of functionalities for each booking system.