Wednesday, January 06, 2010

APEX Family Medicine Joins Forces With Smile Reminder to Combat H1N1

By Utilizing Smile Reminder's Unique Communication Technology, APEX Family Medicine Alerts Patients of Vaccine Availability

Denver, CO - January 6, 2009 - The recent national H1N1 flu outbreak proved to be a true test of efficacy for the American healthcare system. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated 47 million people were infected with the H1N1 virus between the months of April 2009 and November 2009, placing heavy responsibility on community medical practices to ensure the H1N1 flu vaccine was efficiently and appropriately distributed. Faced with the challenge of distributing the H1N1 vaccine to high-risk patients in a timely manner, Denver-based APEX Family Medicine decided to leverage the technology behind patient messaging service Smile Reminder to ensure their patients received optimal care.

When the H1N1 pandemic was at its peak, APEX Family Medicine was treating up to fifteen H1N1 influenza cases daily. With the numbers on the rise, APEX Family Medicine needed an innovative solution to alert patients of the vaccine's availability in a controlled and cost effective manner. By joining forces with Smile Reminder, a service that allows medical practices to text message and e-mail patients to remind them of upcoming appointments, APEX Family Medicine was able to determine high risk H1N1 patients based on the CDC's criteria and use their Smile Reminder system to generate priority groups for efficient messaging about the availability of the vaccine.

"This innovative technology filled a critical need in a critical time," says Chloe Bailey, the APEX Family Medicine physician assistant who coordinated the messaging initiative. "Our patients are our top priority, and Smile Reminder helped us keep this focus during a time when so many needed our immediate care and attention. Our e-messaging campaign was well-received and proved to be a timely intervention for our highest-risk patients at APEX."

Smile Reminder allows practices to create specific patient messaging groups, which they can then send a customized email or text message to. Priority groups for the H1N1 vaccine were created within APEX's Smile Reminder account, which allowed them to deliver timely customized messages to these patients as soon as the vaccine had become available.
"Our ability to quickly communicate and administer the H1N1 vaccine to our highest-risk patients made all the difference in managing a controlled distribution. We are proud to report that we are rarely seeing cases of H1N1 in our patient population now and have had no deaths as a result of H1N1 virus in our practice," adds Bailey.

Smile Reminder allows offices to streamline their daily routine and strengthen doctor-patient relationships. The service also provides useful features such as automated text and email appointment reminders, personalized birthday greetings, electronic newsletters, post-appointment surveys and nearly every type of practice-to-patient e-communication. Smile Reminder messages can also be sent, on predefined schedules or at a moment's notice, to all patients or select patients using mobile and electronic devices - an important feature that helped APEX Family Medicine distribute vaccinations to their highest risk patients.

In an era of health policy reform and new technology utilization, APEX Family Medicine's use of Smile Reminder's system is an extraordinary example of a cost effective, secure and organized solution to prevent a public health disaster.

About APEX Family Medicine

APEX Family Medicine is a progressive and innovative Family Practice in Denver, CO that utilizes technology to improve healthcare and health outcomes for its patients. APEX Family Medicine is a private medical office headed by family practice physician Dr. Mia Scott.

[note by Fabio Gratton: Check out the APEX press release page and you will see that they are indeed leveraging technology on a regular basis to improve the health AND healthcare experience for patients. Kudos APEX!]

About Smile Reminder

Smile Reminder, the pioneer in text and email messaging to patients, is the clear leader in providing patient communication and interaction solutions for health-care providers.

Several national media outlets have recognized smile Reminder, including, Fox Business and The Wall Street Journal, while also receiving top industry accolades including Inc's 500/5000 fastest growing private companies, Townie Choice Awards (2005-2008); Utah 100 Top 15; and Utah Valley Entrepreneurial Forum's Top 20 Under 5 (2001 & 2005).

Smile Reminder's patent-pending solution enables practices to increase revenue, streamline efficiencies and build patient loyalty. Based on purpose-driven technology, Smile Reminder equips practices with a "high-tech" solution that does not sacrifice the "high-touch" personalization when communicating with patients. Smile Reminder messaging solutions include every type of personalized patient e-communication including appointment reminders, confirmations, recare/recall, new patient referrals, birthday wishes, holiday wishes, surveys, newsletters, customized promotions and more. Smile Reminder enhances its messaging solution with, an online patient interaction suite. Patients can now interact with their provider online in a secure environment to pay bills, view patient images, send secure messages, and download forms. Finally, Smile Reminder's patient acquisition tool, vSling, allows an office to capture, manage, and distribute patient testimonials on the web.

For more information, please visit
To set up an interview and/or media inquiries, call Tyler Barnett at 323.937.1951.

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