True or false: Patient satisfaction is determined by the skill level of the provider? Unfortunately, the answer is false. Research shows that overall patient satisfaction is mainly influenced by those infamous ‘soft skills’ that we in the corporate world consistently undervalue.So which makes the top of the list in determining patient satisfaction?
• Conversation/social skills of physicians and clinical staff
• Demeanor of the front office staff
• Office environment/appearance
Take a hard look at your offices. Are your patients waiting for considerable periods of time, only to encounter rushed and overworked staff? Could your office décor, circa 1980, use a little refreshing?
Every day we grow closer to the full implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which becomes fully enforcable by 2014. This is, conveniently, long after the general elections of 2012 and the politicians who brought this legislation on the American public are safely insulated from their votes on the bill by the short term memory of American voters. However, the effects of the legislation are already taking its toll on the American public, their health care, and the economy in general. I came across several articles recently, which highlight some of the concerns that the opponents of the PPACA have voiced over the past year, since its passage.
In these busy times, it’s no surprise that the patient-doctor relationship has eroded. Increased productivity requirements have shortened the amount of time you have to spend with each patient so many physicians are opting to communicate with patients via email.
Last week, we talked about the gradual decline of the patient-physician relationship and how email is becoming increasingly popular in filling the communication gap.
The plethora of social networking options have also created new avenues for communication and marketing but you would be wise to weigh the pros and cons before diving in. Let’s focus on the largest and most well known social networking site: Facebook.
Depending on your specialty, there are times during the year when you’ll inevitably experience a decrease in business. It’s normal to experience the annual ebb and flow of patients but you may be experiencing slower times than usual given the economy.
You can certainly augment your marketing efforts through emails or newsletters and you can send out reminder postcards to be sure that you’re capturing annual visits. These can both be effective for increasing your daily patient count but let’s talk about a way to be more proactive without investing any money and that’s through maximizing your current patients.
An HNA interview with Michael Manere, founder and VP of Total Compliance Solutions
To provide it’s members with the latest information on compliance in the medical practice, HNA interviewed known compliance expert, Michael Manere, VP and founder of Total Compliance Solutions, Inc. Mr. Manere has been at the forefront of the movement to outsource physician’s office regulatory compliance.
I met with a physician last week who was describing his substantial loss of money in his practice and investments over the last two years. As any prudent person would say, he commented, “And, I have had to cut back my promotional budget significantly.” I replied, “That’s the exact opposite of what you should be doing.” Follow my logic. If promoting your practice is the primary way that you grow, how could you expect to grow if you don’t promote your practice?
Granted, things are very scary out there. It is not business as usual. There is a “new normal” but nobody knows what it is. Every time I watch an economic commentary I want to cash it in! What is the natural inclination of people when they get scared? Most hunker down, close ranks, close in, get conservative. In my opinion, just the opposite of what you should be doing.
Now is the time for you to get creative, to get focused and figure out where to target your dollars. Most practices get lazy when times are good. Figure out what made you successful to begin with and do more of it now. Perhaps times have changed in such a way that the old way doesn’t work anymore. Look to new models of exposure like online practice promotion. Whatever you do, don’t do less of the things that will grow your practice.
The laser (Light Amplified Stimulated Emission of Radiation) recently had its 50th birthday. As an interesting historical twist, this technology was first called Light Oscillated Stimulated Emission of Radiation or “Loser”. This was never going to work, so the name was quickly changed to Laser. It’s a good thing, because Laser Therapy is a winner! I can tell you from personal clinical experience. Over two years I have had the opportunity to treat dozens of different conditions with Laser Therapy with remarkable success.
Semantics? Or is there a tangible difference between the two words and professions?
The dictionary claims that there is difference between the two words, then later says that the two are interchangeable, at least in the US. So which one are you?
A physician (technically speaking) is a person skilled or involved with ‘physic’. Physic is an old French word for ‘art of healing’ or’ natural science’. The suffix ‘ician also from the old French and refers to the person skilled in a profession, and now refers to an occupation. Therefore a ‘Physician’ is a person skilled in the occupation of healing or natural science. Does this describe you?