Client Login

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  1. ABOUT

    1. How long has American MediConnect been in business?
      American MediConnect traces its roots back to 1985.
    2. Are you compliant with all local, state, and federal regulations?
      Yes we are fully compliant.
    3. Who are your clients?
      We serve many types of organizations in the medical field including but not limited to doctors, medical practices, health insurers, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies.
    4. Is your call center certified?
      Our company is both HIPAA and 21CFR11 compliant. Our operators are HIPAA certified.
    5. What is your privacy policy?
      Confidentiality and privacy issues are covered in training. Employees sign a confidentiality policy. All patient-related information is in electronic form; no hard-copy papers are available with patient names. Our privacy policy exceeds the rigors of HIPAA. Because we work with Pharmaceutical companies we are implementing 21CFR11. This is the requirement for FDA submission.
    6. Is there a contract to sign?
      Yes, there is a one-time signing of a contract and HIPAA BAA required.
    7. Once I sign up, how long does it take before my calls are being answered live?
      Your account will be ready to go live within 48 hours after receiving contract, HIPAA BAA and account setup forms. Complex accounts may take a bit longer.
    8. Does American MediConnect offer 24x7 live answering?
      Yes, our U.S. based call center operates 24/7/365. Holidays are included at no additional cost.
    9. Does American MediConnect outsource our call centers overseas?
      No, our call center is located in the U.S.
    10. Who do I call to ask questions or make changes on my account?
      Each client is assigned a Customer Service Representative and contact information is provided prior to the go live date. You may also ask to speak with a Supervisor by calling 800-933-6974 24/7/365.
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  2. FORWARDING

    1. Will I need any special equipment or phone service to use your services?
      No, you only require the ‘Call Forwarding’ feature to be active on the line(s) you wish to forward. This is arranged through your phone vendor.
    2. How do I forward my existing office line or cell phone to American MediConnect?
      There are two common types of call forwarding you can use that are provided through your local phone vendor:
      • Busy/No Answer Call Forwarding: By setting up this feature with your phone vendor, calls will automatically be routed to us if your line is busy or goes unanswered after a certain number of rings (determined by you).
      • Remote or Manual Call Forwarding: Phone vendors allow you to manually forwarding directly from your phone at anytime. If you choose to utilize this feature you are required activate the forwarding when you leave the office and deactivate the forwarding when you return to the office.

      • **IMPORTANT** Some phone carriers have a limit on how many calls they allow to be forwarded at the same time. Your callers may get a busy signal if more than 1 person is calling you at the same time. In order to make sure all calls are presented to the answering service we suggest you contact your phone vendor and request "multiple call paths" to be enabled.
    3. Can I publish the local or toll-free number American MediConnect gives me?
      Yes, you can choose to advertise the unique local or toll-free number provided by American MediConnect.
    4. Can I forward my toll-free number?
      Yes, you can forward your toll-free number to a unique local number provided by American MediConnect.
    5. Can I forward more than one number to you?
      Yes you can! But you must notify us of all numbers that you may forward to us. Our system works on caller ID and "sees" the number you have forwarded to us and then displays your account information to the operator. If we don't know what numbers you will be forwarding, our system won't know what account information to display to the operators so calls will be sent to our trouble line. Our operators will then try to determine what account the caller is trying to reach.
    6. How do I avoid long distance charges?
      None of our clients have to pay long distance rates to forward their calls. We will provide either a local phone number or a toll-free number (at no additional charge).
    7. If I choose to terminate service may I take your assigned phone number with me?
      No, we lease telephone numbers in ‘blocks’ from our phone vendor. The blocks cannot be ‘broken up’ meaning that individual numbers cannot be moved or reassigned individually. We recommend all of our clients have a telephone number from their local phone company for this reason. This is possible even if you don’t have a physical office.
    8. How do American MediConnect operators know how to handle my calls?
      Your script and account protocols are attached to the forwarding number that we have assigned to the account. Our Intelligent Series software allows operators to follow a step-by-step flow chart for each call so that we sound as a professional extension of your practice.
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  3. SERVICES

    1. What type of services do you offer?
      • Standard Services: Live Operator, Front End Greeting/Auto Attendant with Live Operator, Automated Services
      • Message On Hold Services: Auto Answer, Personal Auto Answer, Enhanced Auto Answer
      • Message Delivery Services: Email, Fax, Web Message Retrieval, Voice Mail, E-Voice Link, Alpha Paging, Text Messaging, Automated Message Retrieval
      • Specialized Services: Bilingual Spanish/English, Translation, Daytime Overflow, Virtual Receptionist, Web Oncall, Appointment Scheduling, Appointment Reminder, Medical Advertising Response, E-Response, Reporting

      • If you cannot find a specific service listed please call us as we offer customized services in addition to the ones listed here.
    2. How can I get my messages?
      You can retrieve messages via email, fax, text message, alpha page, web, voicemail and live operator.
    3. Can you transfer or connect my calls directly to me?
      Absolutely! We can warm transfer calls to any local or nationwide long distance number you choose.
    4. How do you handle emergency calls?
      Account protocols are customized on a per client basis.
    5. Can we have different message delivery instructions for different members of our staff?
      Of course, that’s what we mean when we say your account is customized to fit your needs.
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  4. REPORTING

    1. What kinds of call reports do you provide?
      Standard volume information is provided on billing statements. Our call-handling system is capable of a wide variety of reports. Virtually any type of custom report is available, pursuant to client request, for an additional fee. For example, one of our clients measures their offices as to whether the offices are open or closed at the correct hour. We provide an exception report showing the number of calls taken during the hours that the offices were expected to be open. Reports normally measure call volume, call length and other key parameters.
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  5. BILLING

    1. What is your billing model?
      We use a 28-day billing cycle. Invoices can be provided by mail or fax, for a small fee, or e-mail for no cost.
    2. What are your rates?
      We offer standard rate plans as well as custom billing options. If you desire rates please call 860-570-5523 or email operations@actteleservices.com.
    3. Can I upgrade or downgrade my plan at anytime?
      No, we limit changes to base rate packages to twice per year.
    4. Does American MediConnect charge extra to answer my phones on Holidays?
      No, holidays are included within the base rate.
    5. How much am I charged if I go over my minutes?
      It depends upon the base rate package that is in place as we have different package levels to choose from.
    6. When I speak with an operator is that charged to my account?
      Yes, all inbound/outbound/non-live time is billable because our rates are based on labor. If you wish to make changes on your account please call Customer Service at 800-933-6974. This will ensure that you do not accrue any billing charges.
    7. Is there an extra charge for “patching”?
      Yes, there is a charge for the minutes that clients spend on operator initiated conference calls.
    8. What forms of payment do you accept?
      We accept payments via Visa, MasterCard, American Express, electronic debit or check.
    9. I have found a cheaper service. Will you match their rates?
      We are certainly willing to try. Give us a call and we will try our best to match or beat a lower price. Sometimes this can be accomplished through a different rate package or by an account restructure.
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  6. QUALITY AND TRAINING

    1. How do you select your staff?
      American MediConnect has a large pool of qualified applicants to choose from. Job profiling and pre-employment testing ensure that we hire the right people for the right jobs. We offer competitive wages and benefits in a friendly work environment. We look for candidates who have excellent verbal, comprehension, computer and typing skills.
    2. What kind of training do your operators receive?
      Training and on-the-job coaching and incentive programs ensure that our employees are operating at peak efficiency and high quality. Software is utilized for training prior to the trainer becoming involved. Training is 4-8 weeks, depending on the individual’s prior experience and work scheduling, with the main focus being patient sensitivity, call control and accuracy.
    3. What about ongoing quality control?
      All inbound calls are recorded for quality assurance. We perform bi-weekly evaluations for all operators to ensure a high level of quality. Additionally, we have frequent staff meetings to review new client accounts and to address special needs of existing clients. We have found the key to maintaining high quality is two-way communication with the staff as well as continuity training.
    4. What is your support/account management model?
      Our administration is structured to allow for evaluation and quality control at all levels of the company. Each agent/operator is evaluated for operator performance and call quality. Supervisors are evaluated based on the performance of their groups. Senior management is evaluated annually, with peer, subordinate and customer review. For limited-duration projects, a closeout report is prepared for management review with the client. We hold weekly customer service meetings, weekly supervisor meetings and weekly meetings of operator/agents. New procedures are discussed, along with the special needs of new clients and projects. Exceptional events are analyzed, and where necessary, training is reviewed or new policies/procedures are created. Quality service is a condition of employment at American MediConnect; that is, employees can be subject to progressive corrective action, sometimes resulting in termination, for failing to provide service that meets our standards.
    5. What is your mechanism to ensure adequate staffing to avoid long rings or hold time?
      We set competitive service level standards. We monitor and meet our goals on a regular basis. We offer Personalized Auto Answer, free of charge, to guarantee an excellent response time on every call. We utilize a scheduling tool that allows us to import precise usage details in order to determine our staffing levels. Our scheduling tool allows us to code certain days for special consideration. They are reviewed carefully and call volume spikes from previous years, or like holidays are considered in planning. We have a highly flexible staffing situation, backed by a combination of full-time and part-time workers. In addition, many of our employees have the capability to work from home (via Voice Over IP) on flexible schedules; and a number of our key office-based employees are enabled as home-based workers. We are experienced in changing staff schedules on the fly.
    6. What type of quality assurance guarantee do you have?
      Proper handling begins with having the right personnel, procedures and technology in place. It involves working consultatively with our clients to develop understandable and achievable account handling instructions. We have a commitment to maintaining a corporate culture of dedication to handling calls in exactly the manner desired by the client. When customer concerns arise, American MediConnect is known for a rapid response. We have a customer service team available 24 hours a day. There is both a short-term and long-term response to customer issues. First, we address an issue on an immediate basis, quickly correcting any technical, procedural or performance concerns. Then, we initiate a process to seek long-term solutions. This could include a retraining process or a change to our account operating procedures. In some cases, a situation will require us to revisit established protocols or instructions with a client.

      Our internal quality assurance program assists in ensuring the practice of ethical, high quality work through the following techniques:
      • Call monitoring with shift supervisors
      • One-on-one critiquing sessions
      • Standard operating procedure training
      • Mystery caller program
      • Call logger review
    7. What is the Abandonment Rate?
      Our goal is 5% or less. We monitor and meet our goals on a regular basis.
    8. How do I know you can handle my call volume?
      Our staffing schedules change every week and are based on historical call traffic as well as anticipated call volume. If you anticipate a large volume of calls, just inform us ahead of time so we can schedule accordingly.
    9. How is your customer service?
      Superior personal service is our competitive advantage. Our Operations Manager manages the customer service team. All members of the team have direct contact with clients. A “partnership” approach with our clients ensures that we share values of quality and customer service.
    10. What type of references can you provide?
      Many of our clients are happy to provide references and this can be provided upon request.
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  7. TECHNICAL

    1. What is your hardware platform?
      Amtelco switch, Infinity (integrated PBX and call –handling system, with skill-based routing and associated voice mail, scripting, reporting modules and conference call capabilities). Out telephony system is based on an Amtelco Digital Infinity System. The switch is web and ISDN compatible.

      Our call center system has the following features:
      • Call prioritization
      • Dynamic override based on called number
      • Program account instructions by time of day and condition
      • Support reserve agents
      • Remote monitoring
      • Intelligent routing
    2. What is your Application?
      Infinity, Infinity Intelligent Series and Web Portal. Our data network operates under the Windows NT environment, with multiple servers and dedicated T-lines for Internet applications.
    3. Does American MediConnect have a telephony system with queues for follow up?
      Yes our telephony system not only supports queues but it allows for customization. In addition to having the ability to define a standard queue time for all calls we can set queues manually for individual calls. Notes may be included with queues to provide specific protocols that are to be followed.
    4. What happens with calls in queue? Do they eventually turn into alerts?
      We have the ability to set wait time thresholds within 6 second increments. If the primary threshold is exceeded our system has the ability to automatically redistribute calls to higher priority distribution tables which would minimize the wait time. The supervisory team utilizes our Easy Waits Manager software to track system waits and has the ability to manually present calls to available operators.
    5. What controls and systems do you have in place?
      Operators have individual usernames and password and have access only to the portions of the computer system that they are authorized to use. We have multiple redundancies with regards to equipment and power.
    6. Do you have back-up power and critical system components that enable you to continue business in a crisis?
      • Electric power: High capacity, natural gas-generated power supply installed at facility; self-tested weekly. Can power the entire facility as long as gas supply is sustained. Placed on emergency restoration list in event of power outage
      • Telephone: Redundant phone service using multiple T-1 lines. If one goes down, calls automatically switch to another to ensure continuous service.
      • Data: Regular data backup, onsite and offsite
      • All-system support: Full-time professional technical support staff available 24/7/365
      • Staff: Office is accessible to multiple forms of transportation; staff reports to work under the worst weather conditions. Regardless of weather conditions, employees never leave their post until replacements are on premises.
      • Training: All staff trained in "system-down plan," including step-by-step data/system restoration techniques
      • Paging, faxing: Multiple modem lines in place as backup.
      • Office site: Location is relatively impervious to natural disasters. Operators are given remote access if necessary.
    7. How are records stored and maintained?
      Messages and logged conversations are stored for a period of at least 6 years. All servers and backup media are in secure facilities with limited access.
    8. Can American MediConnect transfer data within EMR friendly formats?
      The data we collect is stored within Sequel Server databases therefore we have the ability to transfer data electronically within any specified format. IT involvement is required during the programming phase in order to map the fields of data.
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  8. OPERATIONAL

    1. Is there a language translation service available? If so, what is the availability and what languages are offered?
      We have operators that are fluent in Spanish as well as English. We can handle calls from Spanish-speaking callers with no special arrangements. We also provide live, real-time translation services to medical professionals needing to communicate with Spanish-speaking patients in emergency situations. We have access to an additional 150 languages through a partnership established with Optimal Phone Interpreters.
    2. What is the ability/ease for physicians to get through to call center?
      Clients have the ability to communicate with the service through numerous methods. They have the ability to communicate via email, SMS Messaging and by phone. We assign check-in phone lines to our clients for check-in purposes. These phone lines are set as the highest priority through the use of our call distribution tables. The client is prompted to enter their account number in order to be transferred to an operator on their account. Operators have the ability to find the client’s account if one is not supplied through the automated system. We have the ability to customize the check-in process to meet our client’s needs.
    3. What is the failover for paging?
      Technical failures from paging terminals are sent back to our staff as new calls to alert of a problem reaching the intended pager number. Asking the caller to call back if they have not received a call back is another effective way to ensure quality of service to your callers. We confirm receipt of a text message, with the service provider, for every message sent. Although, that does not guarantee there won’t be delays with the receipt of that message or that the message will be received by the device at all. As a result, we have a confirmation service. This service allows us to offer guaranteed messaging to our clients. Our client establishes a guideline as to how long we should wait to receive confirmation prior to moving on to the next step in the dispatch procedure (20 minutes for example). Our system automatically delivers confirmed messages. If confirmation is not received within the established guideline, we move to the next step in the dispatch procedure until message is confirmed as delivered.
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