Your patients trust you with something very precious: their vision. Whether they seek your services for cataract surgery, diagnosis of an eye disease or a routine eye exam, you want to do everything you can to provide patient care that’s out of sight. Going out of your way to meet and surpass patient expectations will build long-term relationships and help your practice achieve stability.
Of course, your office can’t predict every little hiccup or accident that will arise. That’s why you need business insurance for ophthalmologists to protect your financial wellbeing. But you can also optimize your practice ahead of time to provide the best patient experience possible. Here’s how.
Highly Communicative Staff
What do your patients see when they walk through your door? Your front-desk staff should be prepared to offer a warm welcome and further instructions for patients right off the bat. Some larger practices, like Pacific Eye Associates, actually kick off the check-in process using a designated greeter and a tablet, ensuring a knowledgeable staff member approaches all newcomers to eliminate confusion.
Patients should also leave with a clear care plan in mind. At first mention, patients may not know what terms like “conjunctivitis,” “astigmatism” or “neovascularization” mean. Make sure all healthcare providers are able to speak to patients in plain language and take a compassionate approach. Likewise, all administrative and support staff should communicate in a way that invites patients to ask questions, schedule follow-up appointments and clearly understand payment processes.
Design and Schedule for Efficiency
There’s only so much time in a day. While you’re rushing around behind the scenes, patients are sitting in the waiting room wondering what exactly is taking so long. It’s important for your ophthalmology practice that you’re able to stay on schedule. Creating a flowchart to illustrate how much time each step takes (like check-in, exam prep, examination, results, etc.) and how your staffers can move from one place to the next will help identify and eliminate inefficiencies. You’ll need to figure out how to achieve the optimal patient-per-hour rate without appointments ever feeling rushed.
Safe and Ergonomic Office
There’s also your patients’ safety to consider. Many of them are visiting you because of vision problems. Is your office easy to navigate and free from hazards? If a patient was to trip over a patch of raised carpet, slip on a tile floor or bump into a sharp corner, your general liability insurance policy would kick in to cover their medical expenses and personal injury damages. But you would still feel terrible—and they’d likely leave with a less-than-glowing impression of your office.
In short, make sure your patients can traverse your office easily, find a helpful staff member at the drop of a hat and expect their appointments to start on time. These measures will go a long way in helping ophthalmology practices like yours provide excellent patient care.
If the unexpected does occur, you can depend on business insurance for ophthalmologists to protect your practice. Need to examine your coverage? Visit CoverHound for clarity.