Vendor Spotlight on 1Call: Helping Healthcare Organizations Manage Day-to-Day and Crisis Communications

For over thirty-seven years, Amtelco has provided innovative communication applications to call centers around the world. Amtelco’s 1Call Division, formed in 1997, offers enterprise-wide communication solutions for healthcare organizations.

Communications Connecting People and Information: 1Call has continued to develop products based on customer needs and evolving technology, with the philosophy that products need to save time, eliminate errors, improve efficiency, and keep PHI secure.

Their latest product developments include integrations with third-party systems and wireless devices, such as wireless Spectralink phones, EMRs, and nurse call systems. These integrations allow hospital customers to communicate more efficiently. “We know that integrating across multiple devices and platforms is what our customers need,” said Amtelco President Tom Curtin. He continued, “MiSecureMessages is a perfect example of a secure communications app that works with multiple platforms and devices to secure PHI and make clinicians more efficient.”

Their Customers Say It Best: The University of Tennessee Medical Center sets high standards for their customer service, striving to always exceed their customers’ expectations with personalized care and outstanding service. >

“The installation by Amtelco was fabulous, and the Amtelco folks were just great. When I talk to folks, I always compliment Amtelco’s service,” said Donna Jones, manager of PBX and information at The University of Tennessee Medical Center. “I just feel like the technicians and trainers are always there for me.

“If I have a question, I just send it to the trainers, and someone always gets back with me. As far as service, we’ve rarely had a real issue. Any time I’ve ever had to call them, they take care of the problem.” She went on to add, “The best thing about your service department is they never blame the other vendor. When I call and there’s an issue, the technicians say, ‘Okay, let’s get in there, and we’ll see what’s going on.’ They’re just there to help. They don’t care whose issue it is, they just want this product running. I don’t have an issue with them at all, ever. If I call, they’re always there and always willing to help me. They’re just great!”

Another 1Call customer, Capital Health, is Nova Scotia’s largest provider of health services. Faced with rising “no-show” rates when people missed their scheduled appointments, the call center was asked to make reminder calls.

“We actually dropped their no-show rate from nine percent to one percent,” said Betty Bouchie, senior systems analyst, voice services for Capital Health in Halifax, Nova Scotia. “When we started doing calls for them, their average wait list was about nine months. We dropped it down to about six months with manual calls, and it’s three months now with ProShow. The second that the word got out of the impact we had made, we had people lined up down the block. They want the same thing.”

Creating Lasting Partnerships: Every patient deserves the best care possible. 1Call’s goal is to provide healthcare organizations with the tools to efficiently handle callers’ requests with a single phone call: saving time, eliminating confusion, and providing patients with premier service.

1Call systems furnish seamless integrations with existing networks to save costs and bring information together in a single location. To accomplish this, 1Call has developed partnerships with Avaya, Cisco, Digium, HL7, and NEC.

Because of the close working relationships with customers, 1Call also considers each customer a partner organization. By continuing to meet and exceed their needs, the list of 1Call partners continues to grow throughout the U.S. and Canada, at organizations both large and small.

Featuring 5-Star Service and Support: 1Call works closely with each healthcare organization, helping them design a system that meets their unique needs. 1Call has a reputation for professional system support, offering training, installation, and technical support staff on-call on a 24-hour basis.

Approximately 70% of the customer care group has been with Amtelco for ten or more years. This promotes a comfortable working relationship between customers and the customer care group.

1Call’s 5-Star Service and Support is more than just a slogan; it comes with every 1Call system, and includes:

  • An informed customer care group
  • Experienced trainers and installers
  • Knowledgeable field engineers
  • Online resource library and tech helper
  • The largest healthcare call center user’s group

Innovation in Action: 1Call designs high performance, reliable solutions that streamline communications hospital-wide. Frequent software releases give customers access to the newest features and technology. The 1Call systems reduce operator training time, creating a fast ROI. Web-based access also simplifies procedures for operators and for staff members. Detailed reporting is included with each 1Call solution, keeping the call center informed.

1Call Features Include:

  • Enhanced Call Management Solutions, featuring guided scripting: simplify call handling, reduce training time by up to 80%, and reduce errors with guided call flow scripts. Supervisors can easily edit existing scripts or create new scripts at any time. The code call process is just one of the call flow scripts that help operators and personnel efficiently handle codes hospital-wide.
  • Web and Mobile Communications: Keep physicians and staff informed no matter where they are. 1Call’s Web and mobile communications allows them to access contact information, view and edit on-call schedules, and look at their messages using Web, smartphone, or tablet access.
  • Secure Communications: Maintaining privacy for physicians, staff, patients, and the organization is vital. 1Call helps organizations provide secure communications with encrypted messaging for Android™, Apple® iPad®, iPhone®, and iPod touch®, and BlackBerry® devices.
  • Scheduling Solutions: 1Call’s on-call schedules allow physicians and staff members to view, enter, and edit their own on-call schedules. The automated schedules help ensure operators contact the correct on-call person. 1Call also features automated workforce scheduling, creating complex schedules in seconds for entire departments.
  • Voice Services: Save time for internal and external callers by automating routine phone calls and provide better service for patients with IVR and speech solutions. The voice services solutions also allow operators to pre-record answer phrases, create multi-party conference calls, automatically record incoming and outgoing calls, capture screen shots to help verify information, ensure proper call handling, and speed training.
  • Notification Solutions: When every second counts, 1Call has the solutions to quickly notify personnel for emergency situations, as well as for sending meeting reminders and HL7 updates. 1Call also offers automated reminders for patients about upcoming appointments, reducing patient no-shows.
  • Detailed Reporting: Everything that happens in the call center is tracked, maintaining complete and accurate statistics for quality assurance reports and other needed custom reports.

1Call Past, Present, and Future

Early History: 1Call has a long history in the telemessaging industry. Amtelco, 1Call’s parent company, was founded in 1976 to provide communication applications to the answering service and medical messaging industry. Amtelco’s founder, Bill Curtin, received his first telecommunications patent in 1951. Since then, Amtelco’s innovation has added thirty patents.

Amtelco Today: Under the leadership of Chairwoman of the Board Eleanor Curtin and President Tom Curtin, Amtelco’s Wisconsin office houses personnel in solutions development, customer care, field engineering, manufacturing, and administrative staff. Amtelco also has additional offices throughout the United States and Canada.

A Bright Future: 1Call is dedicated to provide healthcare organizations with the solutions needed to offer enhanced services while containing costs. By working closely with customers, 1Call will continue to develop innovative features and products.

For more information, call 800-225-6035 or email

[From the October/November 2013 issue of AnswerStat magazine]