It’s no secret that a significant percentage of the population avoids visiting the doctor on a regular basis. Unfortunately, many patients don’t act until it’s absolutely necessary, resulting in costly emergency visits that more than likely could have been avoided by a preventive visit.
The reasons why patients avoid the doctor vary from person to person; however, there are a slew of common grievances are shared by most patients. For example, financial burdens such as the rising costs of medical care and health insurance leave many patients at home when they should be at the doctor’s table.
While such problems are effectively out of the hands of doctors, there are some red flags that doctors and patients alike should take serious note of. Whether you’re a doctor looking to drive additional business or a patient keeping an eye out for a new specialist, consider the following three medical snafus that every medical practice should avoid.
Lack of Organization
The way a practice organizes itself can speak volumes regarding a doctor's quality of care. Whether the waiting room is a mess, the receptionist can’t keep your appointments straight or the office is downright unsanitary, a lack of organization leaves a bad taste in the mouths of patients.
Furthermore, an unclean practice is also potentially dangerous for prospective patients. MedAssure notes the dangers of improper disposal of medical waste, for example, resulting in the potential spread of harmful diseases. If patients can’t trust a doctor when it comes to cleanliness, why should patients trust them with their health? Simply put, patients don’t feel safe or secure in a practice that doesn’t pick up after itself.
Poor Customer Service
At the end of the day, doctor’s offices must follow the rules of just about any service industry when it comes to making their customers feel at home. The fact that medical visits are often unpleasant in nature makes it even more important for medical practices to ensure that patients are comfortable. This is especially crucial to retaining business as more patients opt out of medical care due to the sheer cost involved.
Sadly, many offices cut corners in regard to customer service because they fail to see such practices as integral to medical care. Consider, however, that the most common complaints about doctors include…
- Doctors failing to listen to the concerns of patients, instead rushing through the appointment as if it were “business as usual”
- Unnecessarily long wait times resulting in little to no conversation with an actual doctor
- A lack of respect from the office itself as patients feel like little more than a number
Poor customer service comes at a huge cost to medical professionals; therefore, it should be a top priority for doctors and patients alike. The relationship between doctors and patients is ideally, well, a relationship.
Patients certainly have options when it comes to choosing a medical provider; likewise, doctors have to make plenty of decisions to make sure that their practice runs smoothly. As word of mouth and online reputation becomes increasingly prevalence in the world of medicine, doctors must work to improve their organization and customer service as a means to retaining patients. It’s a win-win for patients as the transparency of doctors online helps to ensure a higher quality of care.