Owning a medical practice can be a jarring experience, even for those with nerves of steel. In the face of increasing regulations and stagnant reimbursements, many small practices seem to teeter on the brink of closure. Rising to meet those challenges, though, is the key to ensuring the success and growth of a private practice.
Instead of letting these challenges overwhelm you, focus on small goals. These tend to be the types of things that are pushed to the side and overlooked as you move through your busy day. By taking the time to make sure the simple things are taken care ofyou’ll find that everything else tends to fall into place.
Greet Every Patient Warmly and Smile
Customer service is a crucial factor that you cannot afford to overlook. Providing that personal touch by ensuring each of your patients is acknowledged and greeted with a smile when they walk in will leave a lasting impression on them.
First impressions of your office and staff are a key component in your patients’ entire experience. Not taking advantage of these crucial first moments can lead to a dip in patient satisfaction levels as well as a spike in your attrition rates. Instruct each member of your staff to greet every patient by name and with a sincere smile.
With patient referrals responsible for up to 80% of your new patients, you want to foster a warm, and welcoming patient-physician relationship. Whether you are a PCP, specialist or subspecialist, your goal is for your patients to leave your office with good things to say to their neighbors and friends about you.
Primary Care Physicians Are Your Customers, Too
Referrals from primary care physicians need to be cultivated when you are a specialist. Though it can be an easy habit to fall into, do not take these referrals from your fellow physicians for granted. Build a strong relationship with PCPs by
- Maintaining optimum relationships with local physicians and communicating with them efficiently
- Accepting all types of payers
- Making it simple for PCPs to make referrals to you by providing transparent access
Reevaluate Your Fee Schedule
Letting your fees languish at levels that fall below those currently charged by the market or even below Medicare reimbursement rates, is akin to throwing away free money. Make it a habit to reevaluate your fees at least every six months and set them at the highest reimbursement levels possible.
Strengthen your practice, and reach your new patient and referral goals by taking the time to look at the small details that make up the larger picture. Doing so will help you streamline your practice while still providing your patients with a satisfying experience.
Last Updated on March 13, 2014