Banner Health digital assistant joins ER teams |

Banner Health digital assistant joins ER teams

Banner Health

The latest innovation by Banner Health aims to help answer an oft-asked question from patients who visit the emergency room: “How long is this going to take?”

Banner’s conversational chatbot has been launched in emergency rooms throughout the healthcare system to improve the patient experience in emergency rooms. Patients interact with the bot on their mobile phones to get information and answers related to their visit, in real-time.

When asked a question, the bot pulls data from the health system’s medical record to get answers. The chatbot service is offered to patients when they register at the emergency room. Patients who opt-in receive a text message on their cell phone to begin the process of interacting with the chatbot.

The first Banner hospital to launch the program, Banner Gateway Medical Center in Arizona, did so in May. After the first month, patients had an average of 9.4 conversations with the bot during their stay. The most frequently asked questions center around when lab or medical imaging results will be available. Since then, all 28 hospitals have started offering the technology, which is powered by LifeLink. LifeLink builds mobile conversational chatbots for health care including large hospitals, pharmaceutical companies and healthcare service providers.

“This is an example of Banner Health working to make health care easier so life can be better,” said Margo Karsten, CEO of Banner Health in Northern Colorado and president of Banner’s western region. “Not knowing when, or sometimes if, a physician will come back to your patient room is so frustrating. This tool will help patients find peace of mind.”