Patients have many choices available when considering a health care provider. Insurance companies are relied on less frequently when it comes to medical provider selection. Patient satisfaction is the cornerstone of any marketing growth plan. There are numerous ways to make a patient feel appreciated for their choice in health care providers. If you don’t want to grow your practice, ignore the rest of this article. If you are interested in implementing a few items to show your appreciation, read on.
New Patient Thank You Letter
A letter from the practice that is personalized and mailed to new patients is an easy and inexpensive marketing tactic that helps boost patient satisfaction. Taking the time to let each new patient know that you appreciate their choosing your practice is a great way to show them that you care. Restating a few comments made by the patient during their exam is also another way to gain some extra points. Who doesn’t like feeling that they were truly heard by their medical provider?
Remember Patient & Referral Sources Birthdays
Most people enjoy their birthdays and appreciate the extra attention this special day brings. Recognizing the birthdays of both patients and referral sources with a birthday card is an excellent way to let them know you care, are observant, and also provides an excellent marketing opportunity for the practice. If applicable, consider offering the birthday person special saving on products or services offered during the month of their birth.
Annual Open House or Patient Appreciation Day
Both open houses and patient appreciation days provide excellent ways to increase patient satisfaction and generate camaraderie. We suggest inviting referral sources and allowing all patients to bring a guest too! Hire a caterer to provide scrumptious food and beverages for your guests. When applicable, ask vendors to attend to provide information on products represented as well as free samples. We also suggest having a few raffles for special prizes. Having a special day to appreciate your patients and referral sources allows you to get to know your patients and referral sources in a relaxed, non-clinical atmosphere.
Provide Free Wi-Fi
The mobile nature of our society has created an increased need for businesses to provide access to the Internet. Not only does this allow patients to work or surf while waiting, it helps diminish the appearance of wait times and increases overall patient satisfaction. If you do not already have some available outlets in your waiting room, we suggest adding a few so patients or those that accompany them can plug in while waiting.
A phone call from doctor’s office after the fact to see how ill patients are recovering is a great way to let them know you care. It is also very important to have surgeons call patients personally after performing a surgical procedure to see how they are feeling. Patients know medical providers are busy and feel special when they receive the extra attention of a phone call. It is often very difficult to get a doctor on the phone, so the act is greatly appreciated by the recipient.
Invite patients to become a fan of the practice on Facebook and communicate regularly with fans keeping them up-to-date on practice news, health news and local events. Let your patients feel like an extended part of your medical practice family by sharing the small celebrations that occur, such as births, birthdays and anniversaries. You will most likely find that patients want to celebrate with you.
The one thing that is missing in many health care organizations is good listening. Time is money, but by not taking the time to ask questions and really listen, you shortchange your practice and your patients. Asking questions is like detective work. It can uncover illnesses and concerns that may have been missed. This can mean better outcomes. Every health care provider stands to benefit from taking an extra few minutes to look patients directly in the eye and ask them open-ended questions about how he or she is doing. By starting an open and frank conversation about their health, where the provider truly listens to what the patient is saying, the doctor/patient relationship is transformed.
Think outside the box and implement fun and different ideas to help your patients feel appreciated for choosing your practice. Get your staff in on the fun and ask them for suggestions. By taking a proactive approach to patient satisfaction, you will keep a positive vibe in your practice that will be felt by anyone who walks through your door or calls on the phone. If you need help implementing patient satisfaction techniques, give MindStream Creative a call today.