An 11-person team at the Firstsource Solutions Ltd. call center in Colorado Springs is on the cutting edge of medicine, helping customers of a major health insurer have video visits with their doctors.
Firstsource declines to name the insurer, but the call center giant provides technical support to both patients and medical providers for the video visits, which require either a camera-equipped computer, smartphone or tablet device, said Marie Ovalle-Sokol, the company's general manager of client relationships. Health plan members can download and install an app or log into their account with the insurer.
"When they choose the 'see my doctor by video' option, then our team reaches out to the member after they have scheduled the appointment and go through the resources they will need for the visit. We also do the same for the providers and clinicians involved, so there are no issues," Ovalle-Sokol said. "It is easy to use, reliable and secure."
Although Firstsource has been working with the client for 2½ years, the company started supporting the telehealth service in February 2016. Users have grown more than fourfold in the past 12 months to make up more than half of all member visits with their doctors, Ovalle-Sokol said. The team has handled more than 9,000 outbound and inbound calls involving the telehealth system in the 12 months ended in October, and that is expected to grow by at least 30 percent during the next 18 months, requiring Firstsource to expand the telehealth team, she said.
"Customers often express gratitude, stating that video appointments are 'life savers,'" said John Fus, a supervisor on the team. "These types of appointments save valuable time. For instance, there's no need to drive (one hour) to the closest facility, when a video consultation may provide the same benefit. Not only does it save time, but also our customers are able to do these appointments from the comfort and privacy of their homes."
The Firstsource team in Colorado Springs also supports a stroke cart, which is a telemedicine device used in a hospital emergency room and allows a medical specialist at another location to assess a patient remotely, and a remote diabetes monitor that measures a patient's glucose level and transmits data to doctors to adjust insulin dosages. The team handles enrollment in the diabetes monitor program, explains to patients how the device works and helps them make sure it is properly set up, Ovalle-Sokol said.
The Firstsource call center at 5725 Mark Dabling Blvd. employs about 400 and routinely adds hundreds of temporary workers in the fall to handle open enrollment for major insurers. The company employs more than 25,000 in call centers in 19 other states, the United Kingdom, India and the Philippines, serving more than 100 clients in the banking, insurance, health care, media and telecommunications industries.
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