So, when we’re discussing the foundation of providing 5 STAR care, we must begin to truly analyze the patient flow within our practice. Also known as your patient care cycle.
Let’s look at our patient care cycle. First, we schedule the appointment, then we verify patient insurance benefits and eligibility. On the day of the visit we check-in the patient, take the patient back for pre-testing, followed by the doctor examination and optical recommendations. Then we recall or pre-appoint our patient, check the patient out and collect the patient balance due, on the day of service. After the visit, we file the insurance claim, reconcile the insurance payment, and then we send a statement to the patient if a balance is due. For retention, we courtesy call to follow up with the patient to ensure they were satisfied with the visit and then we verify that they are on our recall schedule or that they are pre-appointed for their next visit. Last, we communicate with the patient with newsletters, social media engagement, or with communication regarding recall or their next annual eye exam. From there, the cycle begins again.
We must minimize wait times to see a specialist. We need to actively listen to our patients' concerns and questions. We must express empathy and demonstrate interest in the patient as we begin to build the relationship. We must make the patient comfortable and manage the patient's expectations. We must make the patient feel important and demonstrate our care for the patient’s needs and health, by washing our hands in the exam room, cleaning our instruments or seats within the exam room, or pre-test, or waiting areas. We must look them in the eyes, ask questions and treat the patients like they are our friend or a guest within our home.
But how can we take our care a step further? Now more than ever, we are facing challenges that make it harder to ensure that we are providing our patients with the most welcoming and comforting care as they walk through the door. However, the opportunities outweigh the challenges. We want to ensure that we are providing the patient with a care that if you were to walk into a healthcare provider’s office, that it's the type of care that you would expect or wish to receive, especially with everything going on in the world today. We want to ensure that we are comforting and greeting with a smile and welcoming our patients and letting them know that their safety is our number one concern and that we want to take care of them. Find your wow factor. This will put us ahead of the game when it comes to succeeding against the competition.