In both business and healthcare, it’s common to think that good customer service and patient engagement are the same thing. But they are incredibly different imperatives.
While it may be an oversimplification, customer service tends to be reactive. It’s a measurement of how you respond in providing customers with the care that they require to spend money at your business.
Conversely, patient engagement is proactive. You engage with patients as a routine part of doing business. In a way, you’re trying to make customers and patients feel like they have ownership of the healthcare experience.
As with anything in a small office, time is a precious commodity. But by utilizing new technology, you can implement a strengthened and expanded patient engagement strategy, connecting with patients in a way that helps grow your practice profitably.
Improve the Patient Experience through Efficiency
Patients have so much more information available to them today in terms of finding a care provider who is a perfect match for their situations.
As a result, medical practices—indeed, all businesses—must respond to this by focusing more strongly on building loyalty. One of the best strategies for patient engagement to drive loyalty is by improving workflow processes to deliver a better patient experience. These may seem like “little” improvements, but when you can differentiate yourself by making your practice easier to navigate, it gives you a definitive advantage.
For instance, Zingit Solutions has a practice management system that enables you to eliminate paper forms, such as those required when bringing a new patient on board.
Instead of making patients read and sign in the waiting room, you can get their affirmations through easy-to-use online forms. With a few quick keystrokes, the patient can complete forms that would take much longer to do in the office on paper. Digitizing the process also provides improved accuracy.
You can even alert patients to the need to fill out the forms using the text-messaging functions built into Zingit. These forms are HIPAA compliant, improve accuracy, and save staff time from processing and interpreting handwriting.
Online scheduling is another example of how you can develop a modern patient engagement strategy. More and more people prefer do-it-yourself processes, where they are allowed to choose the date and time that works for them, without a staff gatekeeper.
Even better is the fact that online scheduling can happen at any time, in comparison to the legacy process, when you could only make an appointment while at the office. With online scheduling, you make it easier for people to engage with you who may be new to the practice or who work during business hours and can’t make it to a phone.
Have Two-Way Communication
The infrequency of appointments can create an obstacle in building quality patient relationships in a way that will have an impact. Changing that dynamic is a crucial part of creating an enhanced patient engagement strategy.
The Zingit Solutions platform can help you improve patient communication in between appointments, in both large and small ways. For instance, the platform offers automated appointment reminders. Reducing the no-show rate helps add sustainable growth to your practice.
You can also send broadcast texts to all your patients at once to communicate important or urgent news or new services. A webchat-to-text function enables you to implement two-way communication that allows for better patient engagement than the single-response “confirmation” texts.
Developing a patient engagement strategy with Zingit enables you to implement these and other features when you are ready. You can start with one or implement all in a bundle.
Build Campaigns for Ongoing Engagement
Practice management solutions offer another avenue for building a patient engagement strategy that can help grow your practice, opening up new lines of communication between appointments.
Utilizing Zingit Solutions tools to establish ongoing campaigns, with communication touchpoints between appointments, is a perfect way of creating an enhanced patient engagement strategy. These campaigns can be both care and relationship related.
For instance, you can use Zingit to configure automated communications to recognize milestone moments for patients, such as video birthday or holiday greetings. A care-related example might involve a content campaign prior to an appointment that could focus on your practice and what it stands for, or it can promote other pre-appointment tasks, such as things to bring and what to expect from the appointment.
You can use your practice management system to help educate your patients, both before the appointment and afterward. For example, texts to patients can include links to educational resources, such as ways to eat better to improve health or information about exercises or other preventive, proactive steps that patients can take to feel better.
The elements of your campaigns are limited only by your creativity and knowledge of your patients. The more you know and understand them, the greater the opportunities to create a modern patient engagement strategy using Zingit.
Patient Engagement with Zingit Solutions
Practice management solutions provide significant new capabilities for creative patient engagement strategies.
Zingit can help you build a sustainable, profitable growing practice by reducing no-shows, increasing patient loyalty through efficiency, and improving two-way communication.