Seek patient feedback in order to feed forward
Patient satisfaction isn’t just a compliance issue; it determines the success of your practice. It is very easy to get caught up in the daily grind of tasks and before you know it another year has passed and you haven’t got round to doing all those things that you meant to do. So, you make hasty decisions, second-guess what you think your patients want and on you go. However, this is a risky way of managing your practice. Reactive rather than proactive management in the long term won’t lay a strong, sturdy foundation for success.
Without your patients and more importantly without happy, loyal, satisfied patients your practice will struggle in this ever-competitive environment. So, how do you keep up?
- Take the time to set clear business objectives, map out where you want to go and, from where you are now, how you are going to get there ensuring your objectives are SMART (specific, measurable, actionable, realistic and time-bound).
- If you haven’t already, map out your patient journey including all of the touch points that they have with your practice. This will include everything from your website, the signage outside the practice to the letters/text/emails patients receive, how they are greeted in reception, their treatment experience – quite literally everything!
- Think about the best way to obtain feedback from patients; this could be verbal, via post or perhaps an online survey tool such as www.surveymonkey.com
- Involve the whole team – patient satisfaction is the responsibility of each and every member of your team and everyone should contribute their ideas for change and improvements.
- By continually monitoring, measuring and feeding back patient satisfaction you will ensure any issues or areas with room for improvement will be spotted early on and can therefore be acted upon.
Retrain yourself and your team to adopt a more forward-thinking approach to patient care. What you do right now, today has an impact on the future success of the practice. Empathy goes a long way and putting yourself in a patient’s shoes and asking ‘how would I like to be treated? What would delight me?’ will ensure that you are putting patients at the heart of your practice and improving patient satisfaction. This will lead to more recommendations, more plan memberships, greater uptake of treatments, a happier team and greater profitability.
Gary Moore, Business Development Manager, Independent Care Plans
For further help and advice please do not hesitate to contact me. Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01463 223399.