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Bandwidth Study: Nearly Half of Patients Would Switch Doctors If They Can't Communicate by Text Message

April 18, 2023

Shows importance of digital-first communications in providing access to care amid rising patient expectations 

RALEIGH, N.C., April 18, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Bandwidth Inc. (NASDAQ: BAND), a leading global enterprise cloud communications company, today announced a new report based on a survey of 1500 Americans' preferences in communicating with their healthcare provider. Among the key findings: nearly half of patients (41 percent) would switch doctors if they couldn't reach their office by text message. And over 81 percent of respondents reported that their expectations for communicating with their healthcare provider have changed since COVID-19 began.

"Text messaging has emerged as a critical communications channel in a post-pandemic world, with many people not having the ability or the privacy to phone their doctor while at work. This shows how important it is for doctors to meet patients where they are, in the communications channels that are most convenient and effective," said Brad Roldan, Vice President and General Manager of Programmable Services at Bandwidth. "That's why Bandwidth is so committed to empowering healthcare providers to adapt to rising patient expectations and deliver secure, protected health information by text message and other channels."

The "digital front door" should be a top strategic focus for healthcare providers in 2023, according to the research firm Gartner(R)1. Effective digital engagement with patients enables doctors to more effectively reach patients in popular channels like text messaging. Bandwidth works with a number of patient engagement platforms that healthcare organizations use to personalize communications and improve patient retention, reduce office operating costs and boost staff effectiveness, while improving overall health outcomes. By providing powerful APIs, including HIPAA-eligible text messaging and voice, plus toll free and in-app calling, Bandwidth helps healthcare organizations meet rising patient expectations in a post-pandemic world. 

Other findings from the survey included:

Phone calls are still important.

  • Although text messaging is emerging as a popular channel, it shouldn't entirely replace the traditional voice call. In many scenarios, phone call and text messaging held the No. 1 and No. 2 most popular spots, respectively, for respondents.
  • However, in certain cases, this pattern changed. In the case of modifying appointments, a phone call was the number one choice.

Income plays a key role in patient preferences.

  • There was a significant correlation between income and preferences. Respondents in the lower half of overall reported income ($75,000 and under) most frequently named text messages and phone calls as their top two preferred channels. However, respondents in the higher half of overall reported income ($100,000 and over) were more adaptive to new channels like apps.
  • This could potentially speak to an accessibility concern, which is an important consideration for providers and the populations they serve.

Read the full report here.

1 Gartner, "Predicts 2023: Changing How Healthcare Provider Services and Operations Are Delivered," Barry Runyon, Sharon Hakkennes, Gregg Pessin, 5 December 2022.

About Bandwidth Inc.
Bandwidth (NASDAQ: BAND) is a global cloud communications software company that helps enterprises deliver exceptional experiences through voice calling, text messaging and emergency services. Our solutions and our Communications Cloud, covering 60+ countries and over 90 percent of global GDP, are trusted by all the leaders in unified communications and cloud contact centers–including Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cisco, Google, Microsoft, RingCentral, Zoom, Genesys and Five9–as well as Global 2000 enterprises and SaaS builders like Docusign, Uber and Yosi Health. As a founder of the cloud communications revolution, we are the first and only global Communications Platform-as-a-Service (CPaaS) to offer a unique combination of composable APIs, owner-operated network and broad regulatory experience. Our award-winning support teams help businesses around the world solve complex communications challenges to reach anyone, anywhere. For more information, visit

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Julia Stevens, Bandwidth,