Owning your own medical practice can be a dream come true. Instead of being lost in the shuffle at a large hospital, you get to manage your medical office and patient care exactly how you see fit. While small medical practices are often popular for patients for providing more personal attention, sometimes a smaller medical office can also get a reputation for being less organized or having worse customer service than a hospital with a larger staff. Here are a few ways to improve your customer service, which in turn will lead to higher levels of patient retention:
Hire a Service Call Center
Even if you have a great receptionist, small medical offices can soon become overwhelmed when it comes to returning phone calls and scheduling appointments. Unfortunately, taking too long to call patients back, missing calls, and scheduling mishaps are exactly the kinds of things that lead to customers being unhappy and perhaps choosing a different medical office.
By hiring a professional service call center that has experience working with medical patients, you will streamline and improve your customer service. Many call center answering services offer 24/7 service, and all offer prompt, professional scheduling and other customer service needs. Professional service call centers specializing in physician customer service also have training on HIPAA laws, ensuring they do not violate any privacy regulations when answering patient questions over the phone.
Don't Overbook Your Appointments
While it can be tempting to book non-stop, back-to-back appointments in order to maximize your profits, this can spell doom for your customer service. Patients start to feel like they are being rushed through their appointments and don't truly have a chance to ask questions or have their health concerns addressed. Remember that one thing you can offer that many larger hospitals don't is individual, one-on-one attention. Schedule appointments in such a way that neither you, nor your nurses, techs, or patients feel rushed.
Asking for feedback about your customer service will allow you to notice potential issues and address them right away as they arise. Online and email surveys sent to your patients after appointments can ask how they feel about a variety of matters, including how long they had to wait in the waiting room, how friendly the staff was, and how satisfied they were with their visit overall. If you receive negative information via the surveys, you can use this as an opportunity to provide your staff with extra customer service training.
By focusing on customer service, you will soon build a reputation as a small medical office that truly cares about its patients and is easy to work with. For more information, contact companies like NMB Call Center, Inc.