Top 8 patient retention strategies for your medical practice

Patient retention

Top patient retention strategies for your healthcare practice

Table of Contents

Introduction

Have you ever had an unpleasant experience with a healthcare provider? If yes, what did you find appalling? Their way of treating patients or their wait time? If you have to avail any treatment in the future, what are the chances of you visiting the facility again? Zero, we assume. The healthcare sector is large and full of competitors where each and every practice is trying to provide the best service. Faster, reliable, and speedy recovery is what patients look for whenever they reach out to you. However, if you are not able to do so, you lose a customer, forever! 

Every patient out there is looking for simple processes where they can easily get their appointments booked, have no hassle of standing in lines and get their medicines faster. To ensure that your customer does not leave you and comes back to you every time they need medical attention, follow this article closely to get a better understanding of the following – 

  • What is patient retention? 
  • Why is improving your healthcare services important? 
  • 9 easy ways to improve patient retention 

What is patient retention? 

Patient retention is defined as a successful relationship between a health practice and the patient. It is the collection of positive touchdowns. This collection of touchdowns encompasses the factors that determine whether a patient will still return to your health care facility or leave for a better one. There are some factors that should be kept in mind to make sure that the patient returns to your health care facility every time they need help. 

Patient retention is a term used for people who are loyal to their healthcare practice the way their healthcare practice is loyal to them. The success of your facility is measured by the number of visits made by a patient every time they had a problem. The more visits they make, the more reliable is your practice. 

Why is improving your healthcare services an important factor? 

Improving your healthcare facilities is important because a patient cannot wait in long queues to get their consultation. Generating word of mouth is a technique used to talk about good or bad things about your healthcare facility. If you serve your patients the right way, the word of mouth will be that your facility is the best and for anyone who is sick and needs help, your name will be the first one on their mind. There are some other ways to improve your healthcare facility like keeping up with the hygiene of your waiting room, keeping your patients well engaged during the waiting time, and maintaining the overall reputation of your facility by providing the best services to your clients. 

8 easy ways to improve patient retention 

#1: Make booking appointments easier and smoother 

Your appointment scheduling should be easy and feasible for the patient. The website of the healthcare facility that you have chosen for treatment should provide an easy appointment booking feature. This helps the patient fit your schedule easily according to your availability and theirs too. Emitrr allows you to book appointments, send confirmation links about your appointment, and update on your upcoming appointments, thereby keeping you and your patient on the same page. 

#2: Send a confirmation link 

Once the patient has booked an appointment, the next thing you do is send them a confirmation link from your business number. This gives them a reminder that they have an upcoming appointment whereas you also get the confirmation that they will pay you a visit. For instance, with the Emitrr software, you can schedule appointments with your patients, send them appointment reminders, and also recall patients who have availed treatment from you. 

#3: Get a website 

More than 80% of the users look for medical services online before going offline. 

Having a website and a digital presence is extremely important today for any business. A website is the face of your online business. This allows the visitor to have an understanding of the service you are providing. Any user will visit your website to know what kind of services you provide and read the feedback about your services. Medical services are looked at online nowadays rather than offline because it is more convenient for people to make comparisons and choose the facility that best serves their needs. It is easy to just sit at home, book an appointment with the doctor, get a reminder for the same, and get assistance online about your queries. 

#4: Give them what they are looking for  

You are the owner of a healthcare facility. As the owner, you have to put yourself in your customers’ shoes and understand what it is that they need the moment they step into your facility. You give them what they want. Provide some reading materials to keep them engaged. Patient engagement as well as the overall experience of the patient is what really matters to bring them back to your health care facility. Sometimes waiting time is longer than usual even when youth have an appointment booked. Make sure you have enough elements in your facility to keep the customer engaged. Build the trust of your patient, make them believe that they are in the right place, and do everything that makes them feel comfortable and welcomed. 

#5: Be responsive 

Being responsive is one of the most important elements that you need to take into consideration in order to retain your patients. Answer the queries of your patient on the website or call instantly. This develops a healthy and trustworthy relationship with your customers. 

#6: Communication is the key 

To be able to maintain a sound relationship with your customers, effective communication is crucial. Be polite, understand what the patient wants to know, and answer their queries. Sometimes there can be a communication gap between the customer and the teller. At this time, you can get someone else from your team to talk and understand what the patient is trying to convey. 

#7: Make a calendar 

Another easy yet mandatory patient retention strategy is to make a communication calendar. Would you like to receive a call from your healthcare centre asking how you are? Make yourself a calendar and stay in touch with your patients who visited you asking them how they are doing and if they require any assistance from their health team.

One of the top capabilities of Emitrr allows you to have a calendar with all your scheduled appointments. Even if you seek to cancel appointments for any given day due to some emergency, you need not make calls to patients separately. Instead, you can send a general text message to all your patients at once, informing them about the cancellation. 

#8: Look for feedback 

Feedback is a source of constant improvement when you are a business owner. With feedback, you get to know about the elements and strategies that are working for you and help you understand the gaps in care. Listen to the feedback given by your patients. This is your queue to improve on the factors that your customers didn’t like. Ask your patients to leave feedback online on their site or give them a sheet of paper where they will write everything that they liked or disliked about your facility. Work on the feedback your customers give; this way, your patients will definitely come back to you in need. 

Takeaway 

If you are a healthcare practitioner, then merely acquiring new patients isn’t important; retaining them is equally crucial. With the aforementioned strategies, you can improve patient retention, thereby enhancing sales and growing your revenue by manifolds. You can also make use of the Emitrr software to improve patient retention; right from managing calls to texting your patients, from scheduling appointments to responding to missed calls.  So, make the most of Emitrr’s features and embark on a journey of constant growth! 

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