How to Help People and Businesses Get Ahead of the Cold and Flu Season

Pssst…the cold and flu season is upon us, don’t pass it on! The time has come for scarves, gloves and pumpkin spice everything, which also means that trash cans are starting to overflow with tissues while a melody of sneezes and sniffles plays in the background of our homes, offices and other public spaces. It can be a distressing time for many, but it’s game time for cold and flu eliminators.

The reality is that preventing the spread of sickness is not only up to us as the individual. Responsibility also lays with the employers we work for, as well as the doctors and pharmacies we trust, to help improve the health and wellness of the people in our community. In the spirit of giving (good vibes, not germs), texting is a valuable tool that can help these flu fighters have a positive impact on people in ways that they may not have thought of before.

Make it easier for your employee to stay home when they’re sick

Consider texting for employers. Companies do have a vested interest in the health of their employees because that is a huge driving factor in a company’s output. When one person falls ill, there is a risk that they could infect other members of the team. Still, business must go on, as well as the communication between coworkers. Texting is an intuitive medium that helps employers and employees connect more directly than via phone or email; it streamlines information that can assist the company in their day to day operations, which is pivotal during periods when resources are low.

Considering that 98 percent of text messages are read within 2 minutes – compared to a 20 percent open rate for emails– texting offers a solution that is quick, simple and accessible for everyone. Companies that invest in two-way business texting to stay connected with their employees can enable better communication, collaboration and efficiency.

Make it easier for your patients to schedule an appointment

Doctors have a great opportunity to drive more engagement with their local communities, too. People are extremely busy, and there’s only so much time in the day to set aside for appointment setting, waiting on hold and in-person consultations. The fact is: people are less likely to schedule doctors’ appointments if they must jump through hoops on the phone just to do it. Having text-enabled landlines opens the door for people to communicate more effectively with their health practitioners.

When doctors make it easier for patients to stay informed, set up an appointment and check in on time, patients are then more likely to follow through on taking the necessary steps to get better faster. Texting helps doctors communicate with patients in this most-crucial time of year on a medium that they prefer.

Make it easier for your customers to get the medication they need

Upon seeing a doctor and finally obtaining a prescription, patients still have to pick it up from the pharmacy. We all know what it’s like to stand in line at the store when we’re sick and helpless – it really is miserable. But pharmacies can be more proactive in establishing relationships with their patients and making the process at least a tiny bit more bearable. For example, pharmacies can send text reminders to customers so that they don’t forget to pick up necessary flu-fighting prescriptions. Or they can allow customers to text “curbside” and receive medication from their car window, rather than making them stand in line within the store, where more germs can spread.

As the days get colder and shorter, it’s important to remember: health is wealth, and time is extremely valuable. Keep yourself well, and think about how the businesses you interact with can help.

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