Going The Extra Mile For Healthcare Customers

If you're running a healthcare business, whether it's a private practice, physiotherapy clinic, or otherwise, then the primary goal of the business is to help people recover from injury and illness. However, there is a lot more that goes into a good patient or client experience than positive health outcomes. Here, we're going to look at a few of the ways you can ensure that you're able to go the extra mile, to keep them coming back, and to ensure that your business becomes known for the highest standard of business.

Ensure that your business is accessible to patients with disability
The question of accessibility is being addressed a little more effectively, nowadays, than it was in the past, to the benefit of everyone. More businesses are doing more to ensure that their customers with disability feel comfortable with them, and this should certainly be true of any business providing healthcare services. Disability is a frequent barrier that prevents people from getting the treatment that they should and doing what you can to lower or eliminate that barrier should be a priority. This can include something as simple as installing ramps to your front door and railings in your treatment rooms, as well as more comprehensive moves like providing NDIS assistance.

Focus on patient friendliness
Of course, it's not just the customers with a disability who should feel welcomed and accepted by your practice. Every customer should, and there are a few different ways you can help with this. First of all, make sure that your reception desk is manned by individuals who are trained, courteous, and knowledgeable when it comes to addressing customers who live with all manner of health issues, from disability to weight issues and chronic health conditions. If you have customers with any particular health conditions that require a little extra accommodation, then you should consider doing your research to see what you can do to make them more comfortable ahead of their appointment with you, as well. Sometimes, this has to be done on a one-to-one basis.

Use social media to be more responsive
If you intend on putting your healthcare business on social media, then you should understand that this is going to come with a certain expectation from your audience. In particular, they are going to be able to expect to reach out to your business on social media regarding their health questions and about their interactions with your business, whether it's following up on an appointment or trying to set one up. You should probably get used to the idea of social as more than just a marketing tool, but a first line of communication for your patients and clients, and be ready to offer them real responses, even if it's just to get in touch with a call.

Know who you're working with
One of the most frustrating experiences that a patient at any healthcare facility can have is that they feel like they are constantly being forgotten. If they get in touch to follow up on a previous appointment, but the person handling them shows no sign of knowing who they are, it can feel like they are being very much undervalued as a patient. However, with the help of tools like case management software, you can make sure that your team is always recording the information that they need when they are talking with patients. Keeping effective, practical, and accessible records on your cases can make it a lot easier to ensure a continuity of service that is going to make a big difference in the patient experience. 

Make their experience in your office as comfortable as possible
Obviously, for anyone who is going to be spending time in your office, clinic, or facility, you want to make sure that they are comfortable and feel like they are being well-catered for. Aside from having a nicely decorated waiting room with comfortable furniture, you should also consider having a healthy snack bar, a coffee machine, or even just bottles of water on hand for them to be able to wait a little more happily. These might seem like fairly small amenities, but making your patients and clients more comfortable can help them feel a little more at ease about the treatments that they are getting, which can lead to more positive interactions across the board.

Ensure your place has free Wi-Fi
The simple reality, nowadays, is that people expect to be able to stay connected, regardless of where they go. This is especially true of working hours when people might want to be able to check in on the office while they're out seeing about their health. You might feel like providing your patients and clients with Wi-Fi feels irrelevant to what your business offers, but it all comes down to comfort regarding their time in your offices, once again. You can even make good use of this, encouraging them to check out information on your website or to share their experiences on social media while they are in your clinic or office.

Be equipped for emergencies
Not every healthcare business is necessarily going to be geared toward providing emergency assistance. However, if you have staff members who are trained in things like emergency first aid, then it may benefit you to put them on notice when there is an emergency health concern that they can assist with. Not only can you help your clients and patients who have health emergencies on your property, but you can even play an effective role in public health emergencies, which can position you as a vital and helpful part of the local community, not just a business. Make sure that, regardless of what kind of services you offer, you have first aid kits and trained staff on hand.

Stay in touch
A lot of the time, with healthcare providers, it can feel like once you're out of the office, you're out of sight and out of mind. For some, this is fine, but others, especially those with ongoing health concerns, might feel like they are being abandoned, and not properly cared for. To that end, you should make sure to go beyond the business to check in with your patients. This can be as simple as a follow-up call or email after the fact, but you can also think about encouraging patients to sign up for newsletters that can keep them up to date with health advice, especially if your business specializes in treating certain kinds of patients. Make sure that you're sending information that's relevant to their needs.

Use modern technology to be more convenient
Technology is doing a lot to bridge the gaps in service that were previously very difficult to do. For instance, when it comes to setting appointments, you can make it a lot easier for existing patients by giving them a log-in for your site, and including an appointment calendar that allows them to find the time and day that works for them, with their specific doctor or care provider. You should also consider telemedicine offerings, which can allow you, for instance, to get in touch with them over a webcam for certain appointments and examinations. It's not going to help in every case, but it can make your services much more accessible.

With the tips above, you can ensure that you're able to give every patient and every client the kind of attention, care, and dedication that will see your business gain the reputation for excellence that it deserves.

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