You have a small practice and have enjoyed several years of sustained growth. However, now you’ve leveled off and turning a profit seems nearly impossible. The good news is that there are several things you can do to restore a healthy rise in your annual bottom line.
A medical practice that’s been in business for many years may lose sight of its reason for existence, the patients. Knowing how your clients feel about the practice will allow you to make the necessary changes to improve their outlook. Following up on each visit with a questionnaire will show your customers that you care. Another way is to improve the line of communication by getting to know them, especially if they are regulars.
Other Payment Options
In an age where many people have insufficient health insurance or none at all, giving them the ability to pay over time by adding services like healthcare finance will not only make the visits more affordable for your clients but also ensure that you get paid on time.
Most medical practices have a website but they fail to back up their efforts with an appropriate marketing strategy. Every business needs to promote itself in order to achieve success. Owning a small medical practice is no different. Take advantage of social media and use other resources like LinkedIn to connect with other successful local medical practices to seek advice.
It’s very upsetting to clients when they have a scheduled appointment for a set time and they enter the office only to find many patients waiting to see the doctor. Long waits will eventually turn customers away and have them looking for a new physician. Make sure that you schedule only the amount of clients that you can honestly see and spend quality time with, within a 15-minute window.
Manners matter to most people and chances are they or a loved one is sick and that’s why they are there. Make every effort to ensure that you implement good practices such as hiring good staff, and that your staff understands the importance of treating customers right. While there will always be trying patients, most are easy to satisfy if you greet them warmly with a smile and attend to their needs.
While a large percentage of your clients may be retired, most people work during the day and getting to an appointment prior to 5:00 pm means taking time off of work. Keeping the clinic open later one or two evenings and open for a few hours on Saturday can really help attract new patients.
Save Your Patients Time
Sick patients go to the office to get a prescription to feel better. Once you provide the diagnosis, instead of handing over several prescriptions to fill, use technology to save your customers time. Use your iPad or other electronic device and contact the pharmacy directly so that once your patient leaves they can head straight to the pharmacy and pick up their medications instead of waiting an hour or longer.
Keep Things Moving
As stated earlier, no one wants to sit in a waiting room for an hour. One way to keep your customers happy is to keep them moving. Have an efficient office where they sign in and then move to a room within a matter of minutes. Follow that up by having a nurse enter their room within 5 minutes to check blood pressure, temperatures and ask standard questions.
The good news is that there are several ways to increase the bottom line on your small medical practice. Being accommodating, having a presence on social media and making your patients feel important are just a few ideas to help you achieve success.