Patient experience is a huge component of your brand. In this episode, Russ and I talk about 5 common ways, or touch points, which likely cause anxiety, frustration and even anger our patients, thus worsening the patient experience.
In the next few episodes, Russ will be interviewing Duane Knapp and discussing brand. Brand is your reputation. Russ and I like to define brand as the summation of all encounters and experience with anything from you and your medical practice.
Today, we want to talk about a small component of brand, that is, patient experience.
Brand = Patient Experience
This may be an over simplified definition of brand as we should also include the physician/patient interaction, but for our purposes, we are NOT including the physician's role in the overall patient experience.
A majority of the time spent with your office is without the physician, so we all need to be aware of certain stressors or "touch points" which usually negatively impact the overall patient experience, and thereby, our brand.
1. The Appointment | Message on Hold - how many of us some type on hold messaging system? There are many aspects of on hold messaging which negatively impact the patient experience and hence, your brand.
2. Arriving At The Office - a new patient will not where to go and gets anxious about directions, parking, payment for parking, etc. Are forms required?
3. The Waiting Room - this can add a lot of confusion and anxiety to your new and old patients. Waiting devalues and patient's time. Do your patients understand the order in which patients are brought to see the doctor?
4. Insurance participation is quite confusing. There can be disagreement and misunderstanding about participation, co-pays and coding. E.g. co-pays mistakenly charge in a post-op period.
5. Front Desk/Receptionist - your telephone staff, front desk and checkout are the most important people in your office with regard to patient experience. How to they rate? Personal? Congenial? Do they understand your brand and exemplify your brand?
Though these are common problems, evaluate these possible touch points in your own office. Improving upon them may indeed reduce the anxiety and "friction," and improve your patient experience...and brand.
All the best,
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