A doctor is nothing without patients. But, unless they make themselves known in the community, and make themselves available, they are not going to be able to attract a lot of patients. One of the most important thing for many people is that doctors have convenient hours. This is no longer a nine to five world, and people often need to have appointments that will fit in with their schedules. One way that doctors can gain a good reputation in the community and increase their caseloads is to be accessible. This means offering things like early or late hours. When doctors increase their availability, it means fewer trips to the emergency room for patients when they need to see doctors after hours.
In addition to having better hours, there are other ways that doctors can attract new patients. These include:
One of the things people hate the most about visiting a medical office is having to fill out a bunch of forms each time they visit. When you have electronic health records, they will only have to fill out one form. All of their information will be recorded and easy to access, so you will always have the information you need, when you need it. You can even use the system to send out prescriptions to pharmacies.
Many people don’t have time to call for a medical appointment when they are working, and prefer to call during their lunch hour or even after work. If your office closes for lunch, you are going to miss getting calls from patients who need to call at this time. Have a member of your staff on hand to answer the phones during the lunch hour. That way, patients will be able to get through, and you won’t be missing any calls. If there is no one to answer the phone, most people are likely to call another doctor, and will never call you back again. You may also want to consider extending your telephone hours, so patients can call after 5 pm.
You need to get your name out there, and one way to do it is to be up front with pricing. Often, patients will want to know what procedures cost before having them done. You can use Yempl.com to inform potential patients about your rates. They compare your information to that of other doctors in order to make the best decisions.
No matter how organized your office is, there are still bound to be patients waiting in the office for appointments. They are not getting anything done while they are just sitting around, but they can be more productive when they are able to connect to the Internet. You can provide free Wi-Fi services so your patients can use their mobile devices to connect to the Internet and check emails, shop, chat with friends, get work done, and more. With so many people carrying mobile devices these days, it makes little sense not to offer this service.
When you have a web portal that is easy to use, patients can schedule appointments, reschedule appointments, access and print out forms before their visits, and more. You can use the portal to easily update things like contact, insurance, and personal information about your patients. This is a great way for patients to be able to make payments, get prescription refills, get results from tests, and get messages from doctors to avoid missed phone calls. Be sure to include a smartphone app so patients can contact you from anywhere.
Image Source: Seaside Medical Practice