How to create an exceptional patient experience

Last update on Feb, 12, 2019

You pride yourself on delivering the highest level of patient care. You possess state-of-the-art diagnostic and fitting technology. In every aspect of your practice, you strive to create an outstanding patient experience. But are you missing not-so-obvious barriers to achieving exceptional patient care and satisfaction? Little things can make a big difference in how patients perceive their experience with you.

Hearing health advocate Shari Eberts wrote an online article on making your office “hearing loss friendly,” based in part on her own experience as a hearing-impaired individual. “People come to your office because they cannot hear well. Treat them with respect from the moment they contact your office and through the entire appointment,” she writes. “Patients often arrive with anxiety about their hearing loss. Make sure your office gives them confidence that they have found the right partner to share their journey.”

Best practices for providing a great patient experience

Following is a summary of select points from Shari’s article:

  • When talking to patients on the phone, speak slowly and clearly, and give them the option to make or confirm appointments via text, email or an online system.
  • Help patients prepare for their initial appointment by sending them a brief questionnaire about their communication needs and concerns.
  • Maintain a quiet, well-lit office. Sound-absorbing materials can help minimize background noise, and adequate lighting enables lipreading.
  • Patients might not hear their name being called, so personally alert them — for example, with a gentle tap on the arm — when the provider is ready to see them.
  • Devote a space in the reception area to display and demo hearing accessories, such TV connectivity tools, captioned telephones or portable hearing loop.
  • Provide patients with a written summary of their visit, including test results, what the results mean and your recommendations. Patients may not hear or remember a verbal summary.
  • At checkout, offer patients hearing assistance via hearing loop or pocket talker device; this will enable you to clearly communicate details about payment or a follow-up appointment.

“The look and feel of your office communicates a lot about you and is the first thing your patients will notice,” concludes Shari. Click here to read the full text of her article.

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