What Is On the Patient-Payment Horizon?
If history is any lesson, the adoption of new technologies occurs in dramatic spurts as much as it does in a smooth linear fashion. Barely 8,000 motor vehicles were registered in 1900. By 1915, that number topped 2 million. The internet, propelled by advances in connectivity and ease of access, is set to drastically transform how patients pay for medical services.
While the transition may seem incremental at the moment, a paradigm shift is on the horizon. The medical businesses that proactively stay ahead of these well-documented trends will be set to garner large portions of the $3.5 trillion U.S. healthcare industry. Medical practices that do not adapt will face stagnant growth or even decline.
Drivers of Online Patient Payments
Two trends are driving consumer spending habits: generational preferences and online technology. Every day, tens of thousands of digital natives enter the workforce, becoming healthcare consumers with unique spending preferences. “Digital native” describes an individual who was raised in the digital age. Digital natives are far more likely to be comfortable making online payments through a mobile device than customers who learned how to access the internet as adults.
A recent Business.com article noted that millennials (born between 1982 and 2004) and members of Gen Z (born between 1996 and 2010) are “more likely to use technology and mobile devices to pay.” By comparison, only one third of Baby Boomers make online payments using mobile devices. Today, 90 percent of millennials own a smartphone, and half of those individuals use their mobile devices to make purchases.
Consumers of all generations appreciate consolidation. That’s just human nature. Several years ago, credit cards, cash, and checks reigned supreme as go-to payment options. Smartphones are the first device that has allowed expansive consolidation of many tasks and tools, including payments.
Are consumer preferences driving technological advancement or is technology influencing consumer behavior? It’s a chicken and egg conundrum that possibly misses the important point. Indeed, both factors are concurrently shaping how patients pay for medical services. The prevalence of smartphone technology, of course, is a key driver of online payments. An astonishing 96 percent of Americans own a smartphone. These mobile devices now give patients access to online payment services, such as:
- Apple Pay
- Samsung Pay
- Google Pay
As more consumers adapt to paying online, the consumer behavior becomes second nature. Online payments have become so commonplace that any medical practice that only accepts in-office payments risks frustrating their digital native patients.
Meet Your Patients Where They Want — Online
StrongBox Mobile is an innovative mobile payment platform that allows your dental or medical business to stay ahead of the online payment curve. StrongBox Mobile can be accessed from any mobile device 24/7, 365 days a year. Patients can download the free Papaya app to gain greater payment flexibility. Once your medical practice has integrated StrongBox Mobile into your business website, you can track payments, transaction details, online activity, and more through our online dashboard.
StrongBox Mobile allows your business to enhance your business’ revenue integrity while
empowering your patients. If you are ready to experience the benefits of mobile payments and StrongBox RCM & patient finance solutions, please contact our Boca Raton, FL office online or call our team at (855) 468-7876.