Key Qualities Patients are Looking for in a Healthcare Facility
April 27, 2022
Whether you’re treating a teenager with a damaged cornea, a patient wanting a facelift, or even a Labrador with a torn ACL, at the heart of every healthcare practice is the patient and providing them with the best possible care.
That foundational truth is seen in the growing popularity and practice of terms like value-based and patient-centric. But what that means exactly can vary wildly depending on who you ask. The best place to start? The patient. Figuring out what it is they expect from their healthcare provider and how you can best deliver it is a great launching point.
As you look for new ways to put your patients first, consider these patient-centric solutions.
Re-examine your educational resources
Speaking of health buzzwords, another one picking up speed is health literacy or the value of more educational resources for patients. Increasingly, patients don’t just want to be diagnosed and treated, they want to understand the what and why of both.
Boosting health literacy among your patients not only keeps them informed, but studies have also shown that in some cases it can improve patient outcomes. For example, a 2021 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that just a series of text messages could significantly improve patient preparation for colonoscopies.
Whether it’s text messages, social media alerts, gamification or whatever comes next, thinking beyond the classic brochure can help you reach your patients with the information they need in the way that’s most convenient for them.
Consider your environment
While you might have limited control over the location of your office, you can control the environment inside. While hygiene is still the law of the land, finding ways to make your office less visually sterile can go a long way to help patients who might be anxious in medical settings. Personalizing your treatment rooms with small homey touches can make a big difference. Think about incorporating amenities like massage chairs, free Wi-Fi and TVs to accommodate your patients during their treatment or consultation. A familiar sitcom or distracting home improvement program can go a long way to creating a comforting setting.
You can also consider updating the waiting room to create a more tranquil environment. Elements like natural lighting, indoor fountains, calming decorative tones, and seating arrangements that provide personal space are all thoughtful details that can make the wait a little more pleasant. An inviting environment can go a long way in easing nerves and keeping patients at ease.
More and more, patients want to be active participants in their treatment. Whether that’s daily monitoring of symptoms or weekly tracking of treatments, they want to feel like they’re a partner. This is good news for healthcare practitioners! Take full advantage by finding new opportunities to collaborate with your patients.
That could mean integrating patient-facing data input features on your patient portal or encouraging patients to regularly reach out via direct messaging. Let your patients know they’re an essential part of their treatment plan and give them the tools they need to deliver on it.
As a healthcare professional you know no two days are the same. You’re ready to rise to the next challenge. The pandemic pushed that attribute to new limits and it doesn’t look like patient expectations around flexibility will be going anywhere any time soon.
Finding new ways to incorporate that agility into your practice will help you stay nimble. Whether that’s upgrading your patient portal, allowing for more telehealth options, extending office hours or providing additional payment options, staying a step ahead of patient expectations is challenging, but increasingly essential.
By offering your patients a flexible financing solution, like Ally Patient Financing, you can afford them the payment options they might require while ensuring your practice can adapt as needed.
Prioritize processes and accessibility
While every day may look different for your practice, patients are looking for consistency. On your end, that means making sure all processes — especially those that are patient-facing — are buttoned up. They should also be inclusive for all your patients.
That might mean making sure your site and social media have alt text for the visually impaired or ensuring your patient portal can provide all necessary functions for those with hearing loss who might not be able to schedule via a phone call. Thinking through the patient experience for all of your patients can help you identify any weak points and take steps to improve them.
Keep the patient at the heart of your practice
While every practice and each physician may have their own approach, the goal is the same: Providing the best possible care. By taking a cue from your patients when it comes to their care you can ensure you’re not only providing great care but delivering it in a way that works best for those you’re treating.
Keep your patients at the center of your practice with financing solutions as flexible as they need.