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April 3, 2023

The value of guiding patients to the right care: 9 data takeaways from Bright.md’s digital front door

Is the concept of a digital front door purely just for intake purposes? We don’t think so. 

As healthcare continues to evolve post-Covid, along with consumer preferences, a digital front door exists not just to direct patients to care—it’s also critical to a health system’s overall strategy to remain competitive in a developing digital landscape and deliver a frictionless patient experience.

For instance, patient confusion around where to find quick, convenient care is driving health systems to lose both patients and revenue. According to a survey commissioned by Bright.md of more than 1,100 U.S. consumers, 48 percent of folks have accessed care through direct-to-consumer apps or clinics since 2020. 

Combine that with 58 percent of survey respondents who said they likely plan to get healthcare online or through an app in the future—versus a virtual or in-person visit in their health system—and it’s clear health systems need to develop a strong digital strategy to stay competitive in the years ahead.

Why a digital front door is a strategic imperative

So what role does a digital front door play in overall health system strategy? For starters, adopting a digital front door is more than simply implementing the functionality. Instead, it’s a strategic way for health systems to open access while supporting various points throughout the patient journey. By proactively creating easy access to care, a digital front door gives patients the flexibility and convenience they’ve come to expect throughout their daily life.

Bright.md’s digital front door solution, Navigate, is designed to direct patients to the right venue of care the first time, while also driving downstream revenue for health systems through new patient acquisitions and downstream revenue. Navigate is an easy-to-use digital solution that asks patients to answer one question about their symptoms and then offers care options based on their needs. Navigate links the patient directly to the appropriate next step configured by the health system, whether that be an on-demand asynchronous appointment, a scheduling tool, or the nearest urgent care clinic.

Designed to have a seamless, on-demand experience, Navigate makes finding care as easy as possible for patients. In fact, those who use Navigate to find care for low-acuity conditions like ear infections, colds, or rashes can immediately begin an asynchronous interview through Bright.md with a wait-time of just six minutes on average to get a diagnosis and care plan from a trusted provider.

Gleaning insights from digital front door usage

When it comes to a digital front door like Navigate, we wanted to know—how, exactly, are patients using it and what is the value it’s delivering? That’s why we pulled some of the top data points that speak to what patients are looking for when they come to Navigate, what conditions patients seek care for, and how many patients are treated asynchronously.

  1. Within the past year, Navigate guided more than 25,000 patients to care through our health system partners.
  2. Twelve percent of patients want to find a provider or schedule an appointment through Navigate, while 88 percent are seeking care for a health concern.
  3. When using Navigate to find care for a health concern, 93 percent of patients find care options for their condition.
  4. Cough, cold and flu is the top condition searched for in Navigate, followed by sore throat, anxiety/depression, and sinus issues.
  5. About 54 percent of conditions patients search for are treated asynchronously by our health system partners when the modality is offered and available.
  6. When asynchronous care is offered by a partner health system, about 35 percent of patients will opt for this modality — more than in-person clinics options, video options, or urgent care options.
  7. Asynchronous care is chosen by more than 50 percent of patients for three key conditions: Covid-19 questions , yeast infection,  and sinus issues.
  8. Overall, patients are more likely to choose asynchronous care when it’s recommended by the health system as the best care option for their needs—reinforcing the guidance patients are looking for from trusted providers when navigating choices. For most conditions, recommending asynchronous care results in 10 to 20 percent more patients choosing it.
  9. Navigate users who start an asynchronous clinical interview tend to be new to Bright.md. In fact, 78 percent of interviews that originate from Navigate are completed by first-time users. As a result, Navigate engages new patients to the system while opening up overall capacity by allowing providers to treat patients in two minutes on average for common conditions.


“Coming out of the pandemic, consumers expect their health systems to have more convenient and virtual care options available, but it’s hard to understand when to use which option and how to start. The moment when someone starts to feel sick and begins to look for care is absolutely make-or-break for health systems in building long-term patient relationships.” —  Robert DiFalco, Chief Technology Officer at Bright.md

To maintain a competitive edge in today’s changing healthcare landscape, health systems need an attractive, easy-to-use digital front door—not just as a starting place for patients, but as a strategic imperative for the entire patient journey.


See how Navigate can benefit your system

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