For practices of any size, engaging with patients is a great way to make sure they keep coming back. Sometimes this task seems overwhelming. You’re running a healthcare practice and you have a lot on your plate already to keep your business growing—scheduling appointments, collecting payments, and providing quality care. But engaging with your patients and providing a positive experience in your practice is pretty important too.
Making each of your patients feel as if they are your only patient benefits:
- Your Reputation (or the thing that draws new patients to you)
Research shows that when patients play a more active role in their healthcare, they see better outcomes and are healthier overall. When providers engage with their patients and make an effort to build a connection, the patient sees the benefits. Technology changes so quickly that today’s patient engagement looks nothing like yesterday’s patient engagement. Providers don’t need to spend hours on the phone—or even in person—talking to their patients. In fact, they probably wish you wouldn’t. But through more modern communication methods like text and email, providers can cultivate personal patient relationships in a small amount of time. When patients receive appointment reminders, surveys, and educational information from their provider they feel cared about, instead of just as a source of income. They feel encouraged to participate in their own healthcare plan, and become healthier.
Just like the way patients’ communication preferences have changed, the way they see your practice has changed too. With so many social media platforms and online review sites, there are plenty of opportunities for your patients to share their opinions about your practice. And because most of your new patients have already read the online reviews about your practice before they even make that first call, you want to make sure the things that have been written about you highlight your strengths. The best way to build your online presence is to ask your patients for reviews. If your patients have received consistent engagement from your practice and feel a connection with you, they will be more likely to respond to your request, and leave your practice a positive review.
Improving the patient engagement in your practice has a few other benefits that are worth mentioning, including improving your office efficiency and your revenue. With the right patient engagement tools, connecting with your patients can be less work than you think it will be. Emails and text messages are easy to automate. Appointment reminders can be automatically sent to each patient, reducing the number of phone calls your practice makes each day. Survey requests and eNewsletters can also be automatically distributed, making it easy for your practice to build patient relationships without spending hours writing and sending emails and texts. Every patient feels like they are given personalized attention, which means they are more likely to come back to your practice—boosting your revenue and giving your staff more time to spend with the patients in your office.
To learn more about patient engagement, download our white paper here.