Getting More Patients In Your Practice Isn’t That Hard
Does this sound familiar? For many practices, no-show appointment rates and poor client retention are so certain that they’re built right into the budget. Trying to grow your practice, retain current clients and operate more efficiently are all at the top of the wish list for many healthcare practices.
We work with practices of every stripe all over West Michigan. In our experience, every practice has gaps in technology that can help them attract and retain their patient base more effectively. Those gaps are often simple and affordable fixes when you work with the right IT provider.
You want to get more patients in your practice? Here are 4 tips to do it:
Get More Patients In Your Practice Tip 1: Don’t hang on to bad technology
Many practices look for ways to lower costs and, instead of making strategic choices, will opt for cheaper technology or just neglect their phones, computers and network altogether. This presents a number of risks with HIPAA compliance and effectiveness. Cutting costs often isn’t the best way to allow for growth.
One West Michigan dental office discovered that opting to just keep old technology around can be even more costly than replacing it. They maintained a 15-year-old phone system that was creating a number of inefficiencies and costing them a small fortune. Once they switched to a cloud phone, they immediately reduced their total cost of ownership by 42%.
Get More Patients In Your Practice Tip 2: Use call-back systems
Unfilled appointments spots, last-minute cancellations and no-shows are the biggest cost drains for medical practices. Without the right tools, practices are left manually dialing every patient for appointment confirmations, booking routine follow-up appointments, rescheduling cancellations and reaching out to absentee patients. Never mind how tedious this exhausting task is, it detracts from the staff’s ability to carry out the multitude of other pressing tasks on their plate. As a result, those calls don’t happen, and patients can be lost.
Recently, Macatawa Technologies helped one medical practice with this problem by implementing a call-back system that automatically managed rescheduling, placed reminder calls and sent postcards to their patients. Within two months, this practice increased their appointments by 50% without having to pick up the phone. Now that they are consistently running at their full capacity, they are able to explore options to expand their practice to larger facilities and hire more medical staff. Without the call back system, they would still be losing appointments and scraping by.
Get More Patients In Your Practice Tip 3: Follow HIPAA standards
One thing that alarms patients is how well a medical practice is protecting their information. They want to know your practice takes protecting their information seriously. Clearly, if you expose their information they’re not going to continue being your patient. Like any good medicine, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Following HIPAA best practices keeps your current patients happy, prevents breaches and is attractive to new patients.
Get More Patients In Your Practice Tip 4: Work with an IT provider who listens
What works depends on your practice and your organization’s values. Some IT providers just want to sell you on the cloud or the latest and greatest technology. We work with you to understand your practice and identify what technology is most important to your success.
That could mean HIPAA compliance, it could mean an application that picks up the phone and does the calling for you or stops your patients from hearing the busy tone for the 500th time. The important things are that you work with a provider who listens, feels the pain with you and helps you get in front of your patients again.