6 Little Known Ways on How to Improve Patient Satisfaction
You have cutting edge technology, a solid facility and a skilled staff. But how do you make yourself stand out in the vast field of health care centers? It’s all about connecting with the client and making him or her feel acknowledged, heard and cared for in both small and large ways. Take these extra steps to satisfy and retain your patients.
1.First 10 Seconds
Every single staff person who comes in contact with a patient is part of that patient’s experience. It isn’t only the doctor that patients remember later. A nurse, aide or patient transporter can make a huge difference. Encourage every one of these people to look the patient in the eye for the first 10 seconds of their interaction, long enough to note eye color and facial expression, while saying hello. This seeing and acknowledgement of the patient as an individual human will go a long way in improving his or her experience at your medical facility.
- Highlight Empathy
Is empathy a core value at your hospital or medical center? It should be. You never know what a patient is going through in addition to his or her illness. Maybe they just got divorced or lost a friend. Maybe their daughter or grandson is getting married and they know they’re too sick to be there. Train your staff to practice empathy, and to treat all patients with a calm, dignified attitude. Patients can be withdrawn, difficult or cranky because of pain, fear, and unknown personal situations. Your staff can’t know exactly what’s going on with all their patients, so promote kind treatment no matter what.
- Increase Visiting Hours
In a 24-hour world, people’s jobs and other responsibilities might not fit neatly into your visiting hours. What if you eliminated them, and let people visit whenever it’s convenient? Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey has moved to a 24 hours visitation policy. In the first eight months after implementation, results were very positive. Patient satisfaction scores increased and calls for patient updates decreased. Security didn’t encounter any problems with the change and staff were able to maintain their routines.
- Make Patients’ Families Comfortable
Is your waiting area an uplifting place? Or will it add to patients’ families anxiety and depression? Consider color choices. Avoid drab gray. The Johns Hopkins neurosurgery waiting room is decorated with comfortable and cheery green, orange and yellow chairs. Huge windows let in lots of light.
If possible, redesign patient rooms to accommodate a family member who is sleeping over. A well-padded cot and comfortable chair will be greatly appreciated.
Offer up-to-date reading materials. Grimy, tattered, outdated magazines scream germs and unprofessionalism. But a well-kept magazine rack full of current issues shows the conscientiousness you apply not only to the upkeep of your waiting room, but also to your clients. Providing customers with reading materials also demonstrates your concern for their time and enjoyment. Pick subscriptions that suit the interests of your customers (women, men, children, etc.) to keep them engaged and make the time fly by.
Family members have a lot of questions about the care their loved one is receiving. How can you best keep them informed? For families of those in surgery, consider providing a wall-mounted monitor that gives updates about how the procedure is going. During long surgeries, have a nurse call from the operating room every 60 to 90 minutes to give relatives a progress report.
Some medical centers have created a customer service coordinator position. This person helps the families with information and organizing their day. If the family members need to step out, the customer service coordinator takes their cell numbers and calls if there’s anything critical to report.
. Offer Free Phone Charging Stations – Mobile phone charging stations are becoming a staple in most hospitals, as the patient experience becomes more aligned to the digital revolution.
During a long wait in the lobby for updates on loved ones, batteries in phones and other devices are sure to wear down. Especially if friends and family are calling every five minutes to check on the situation. Seeing the battery power drain from a phone is a sure stressor for patients and their families. Help them out by offering a charging station in your waiting area, emergency rooms, cafeterias and other places people gather. Hospital systems like Virtua Health, Texas Health Resources and Baylor Health Care System have already boosted patient satisfaction by investing in KwikBoost charging stations. Now family members can now read e-books or play games, and keep their devices active in case of an emergency phone call. All of this while knowing their battery won’t die.
Installing mobile device charging stations can help raise your Press Ganey Score. Press Ganey measures the patient experience in a hospital by considering various factors. Hospitals across the country could see improved Press Ganey scores as a result of implementing mobile device charging stations.
KwikBoost is a leading provider of mobile device charging stations to universities, hospitals, education, retail and more. KwikBoost offers an array of charging options, ranging from floor-stand charging kiosks, wall mounted charging stations, charging lockers, power tables, power wall workstations, and power hubs.
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