Patient-centric healthcare delivery is the most important aspect of delivering quality healthcare. Thanks to advanced technology, patients are now more informed and want to be involved in their health planning and decision-making. The new regulations (e.g. MACRA, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) point towards value-based care and patient satisfaction. Unfortunately, patient-provider encounters have become mechanical. Exceptional providers genuinely care about the well-being of patients. Patient experience is just as vital as the billing process itself.
Let’s see why is it important:
Patients satisfied with the experience will return. The quality of healthcare delivery, the hospitality, the treatment and the communication–they all constitute the experience. The physician’s ability to establish a strong connection with patients results in them returning – and thus revenue growth.
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People believe in authentic and positive experiences. Satisfied patients will talk about their experience. It is much easier to get new patients through word-of-mouth marketing than it is by conventional methods. If a patient talks to a primary care physician about how pleasant his or her visit was with a specialist he had been referred to, the chances of getting more referrals increase. Eliminating negative experiences by focusing on patient engagement and satisfaction are crucial for growing your referral base.
In order to achieve higher levels of patient satisfaction, practices must be able to measure and analyze their current state of operations and determine areas needing improvement, as perceived by patients.
Here are some tips:
1. Conduct satisfaction / feedback surveys. Ask patients to take the survey at the end of each visit. The scores paint a clear picture on how pleasant (or unpleasant) the visit experience was. It will also point toward possible areas of improvement.
2. Encourage patients to rate your practice online via portals, such as Healthgrades or Vitals. This method creates trust and increases your credibility as a physician.
3. Train your staff to be polite and welcoming with patients. Make sure they are being helpful and respectful at all times.
The process of measuring and analyzing will naturally enable practices to increase the quality of the medical services delivered. This understated benefit of a patient-centered operations strategy is a powerful advantage for any healthcare system and tremendously contributes to the advancement of the healthcare industry.