As technology and patient-centric care continues to improve, consumers are becoming more and more intolerant for old practices of healthcare such as long waits, poor communication, and out of date office procedures. The healthcare world has pivoted to customer-centric engagement models that focus on patient satisfaction and overall prevention of patient leakage. Odds are if a patient falls victim to poor communication methods such as phone tag, call drops, and lack of follow ups, or any hiccup they face during their office visit, they will likely switch doctors and even leave a negative review online. Thus, the current healthcare environment demands excellence in patient-centric care.
Patient-Centric care is not a new idea, and has been trending upwards in recent years. Every healthcare organization handles this new customer experience approach differently, and the issues they face often come down to execution styles. As stated before, with advances in technology combined with the demand consumers have for more transparency to costs, and data protection/privacy, the pressure is building for organizations to meet these demands.
Patient-Centric care is actually a win-win or both sides. For the healthcare organizations: when a patient makes a visit, it is in their best interest to keep them satisfied and reduce any stress levels. In return, they will often avoid payment delays, will gain positive online reviews, and can even make referrals if they are happy. The patient will continue to return, and the healthcare organization will have retained a long term customer. For the patient: they will feel like they are cared for properly, and are not a number. They will always know the costs of care up front and will be prepared in advance for any changes; they won’t have to worry about any surprises. The office visit will be seamless, quick, and stress free.
Data is the goldmine: data suggests that the most important aspect of the patient experience is meeting the patient where they are. The old way of marketing to patients would be to have them visit the website, sign in, then search for the information needed. With improving technology and healthcare communication platforms like Klara that stop poor communication in its tracks, this old marketing method is no longer quick enough to satisfy the average consumer. The 2018 way demands that healthcare marketers implement a system where valuable information is easily accessible 24/7 for patients. Personalization is the key to this new strategy. If you were staying at the Four Seasons, it would be expected that customer service is top notch such as knowing your individual needs at check-in, having a valet ready to assist, providing welcome perks like a bottle of champagne, etc. Patient-Centric healthcare demands the same.