Unlike the days in the not so distant past, doctors aren’t making house calls anymore. This means that patients not only have to leave their homes to see their physicians, they are more active in screening healthcare service facilities. Patients will drive further, wait longer, and even schedule visits on days that are not convenient for them just to be under the care of a doctor that they prefer.
In short, a patient will only deal with a few instances of dissatisfaction when dealing with a long-time healthcare practitioner. Your facility’s medical marketing efforts need to be original and express authenticity so that good patient-doctor relationships are maintained and encouraged. These next five questions will be important for medical marketers when brainstorming and putting out advertising materials for your medical facility.
Is Your Healthcare Service Affordable?
Compared to other doctors in the area, are you charging a comparable rate for co-pays? Have your patients been shocked when they go to remit payment? Healthcare facilities set their co-payment amounts to keep them in business, but consideration also needs to be given to patient healthcare servicing budgets. Work with the medical insurance providers you accept at your practice to make your co-pays affordable for patients and practical for your practice.
Medical practices that offer specialty services such as x-rays may not be as affordable as primary care physician offices. On the other hand, your medical marketing materials can outline why your healthcare facilities are exceptional, thus justifying higher co-pays in many situations.
Do Your Healthcare Facilities Have Updated Tools, Techniques, and Equipment?
Patients know what modern, streamlined healthcare facilities look like and they can tell when a doctor’s office needs some sprucing up. Even if you enjoy great doctors with excellent records, you have to show that you’re investing in your facilities as well. Point out in your medical marketing materials that your doctors are taking continuing education courses so that they are aware of what advances are going on in the healthcare field.
Regularly upgrade all of the equipment that is used in patient treatment rooms so that your clients see facilities that are sanitary and renovated. Don’t let patients think that you aren’t reinvesting in your healthcare facilities because they see older model equipment. If you are planning to add newer tools, make an announcement. When patients are aware of the fact that progress is being made, they can be very forgiving.
Are your Staff Members Personable and Professional?
Healthcare facilities that are staffed by patient nurses and medical billers can help affairs to stay in order even when the waiting area is packed. Ask yourself if your patients feel like they are valued and if staff members work to keep them comfortable? When a front desk coordinator is abrupt and curt towards patients, a bad reputation can be earned that no amount of medical marketing efforts can offset. In short, make sure that everyone working at your office has good character and the temperament necessary for being an ambassador for your practice. Treat patient complaints seriously and you’ll be viewed to maintain a great level of professionalism.
Do Patients Give Your Medical Experts Positive Feedback?
Not all patients will opt to answer healthcare service surveys. Sometimes you’ll have the same people answering your questions in the same manner, especially if nothing significant has changed at your practice. However, getting patient insight can let you know when you should make actively making improvements.
What if something as small as a broken coffee pot maker is making patients feel like they aren’t important? Email your patient satisfaction surveys and have your staff members follow up. Although you don’t want to make patients feel like they are being pestered, you do want to give them sufficient time and opportunity to make their voices and opinions known to aid in future improvements. It is also crucial that you follow-up when negative feedback is given, especially if you think you are on the verge of losing a patient permanently.
Some patients may be unhappy because of a medical issue they are going through and want to go to new physicians in order to get an alternative viewpoint. At the same time, if you have a patient who has complained about something other than the level of care received, they are likely reasons that you and your staff should listen to.
What is Your Healthcare Facility’s Vision for the Future?
If you have plans to buy a new building that has more room to see patients, then you can put up a banner that announces your upcoming grand opening. Your plans may be to start offering other types of healthcare services. For instance, some doctors’ offices start off offering general care and then expand into obstetrics. Making a big announcement about your plans to expand your healthcare facility will put pressure on you to act quickly on your plans.
In the long run, this can be a good move, especially if you have experienced delays in the past. Do what you need to in order to get the funding and motivation to have a bigger and more comprehensive medical practice. Your biggest supporters will not let you feel alone and patients will also help to spread the news via word of mouth.
These questions are frequently asked by patients who consider their level of satisfaction with their current healthcare service provider and whether or not they should be looking for a new doctor. When your facilities consistently offer patient satisfaction and also demonstrate growth, the need for change is not apparent to most. Supplement the five questions listed above with other things that patients may be thinking about. Look at your parking facilities and see if they need to be repaved. Even consider how easy it is for patients to get to your office via public transportation. If you can make it easier for patients to schedule appointments, look into after hours calling services. Successful medical practices always keep the future in their thoughts, hearts, and minds.