Positive patient experience builds loyalty
Although healthcare is the primary reason for a patient’s visit, their total experience will determine whether they come back or recommend your practice to others. Healthcare is a business and good marketing is important. That includes tangible factors such as the look of your healthcare fit-out.
Healthcare design company Evoke Projects looks at what steps you can take to attract new patients and retain existing patients.
Make a great first impression with your healthcare design
Modern healthcare fit-outs are expected to be bright, spacious and welcoming. Of course, it also goes without saying that the healthcare interior design should scream “I am clean and hygienic”. Yet traditional healthcare fit-outs are often dark, musty places that seem stark and too formal.
The first impression takes place in the reception area. Take a look around. Is the fit-out of your medical centre appealing?
Are the posters and brochures current and relevant for patients? Is your hand sanitiser available and full? Do patients have access to water as a minimum? If your doctors deal with emergencies that delay scheduled appointments, or if you have carers waiting for long periods, consider adding tea, coffee and snacks to your waiting area. A TV and free Wi-Fi will keep children and adults entertained. Trust us, people talk about these bonuses!
Customer service is important
In addition to a welcoming healthcare practice design, patients will want to encounter friendly, respectful and compassionate staff from the moment they enter to the moment they leave. In large medical fit-outs, front desk could include a health concierge to greet patients and direct them to the right area. This takes the pressure off busy reception staff who may be juggling payments, making appointments and telephone calls on hold.
Use your logo and brand colour throughout the healthcare design to create a sense of identity. Remember that branding is about more than just a logo; patients soak up other aspects of their experience and will relate it to your brand.
Efficiency provides a positive patient experience
If patients love your healthcare design but are let down by waiting times, communication and follow up, they will not remain loyal to your brand. The overall healthcare design may look swish but if it does not run efficiently, patients will vote with their feet.
Patient engagement technology such as AutoMed and HotDoc can help with appointment bookings, digital forms, mobile check-in, patient recalls and prescriptions. As well as improving patient experience, this technology reduces close interaction and touch points between patients and staff.
Large facilities can also improve the healthcare workplace design with:
- ultra-fast internet so that documents and images can be sent quickly
- facial and voice recognition for touchless door opening and elevator usage
- sophisticated control of air quality and pressure.
Look after existing patients
When marketing a healthcare practice, the focus is often on attracting new patients. Interestingly, conventional marketing wisdom says that it can cost five times more to attract a new customer than retain an existing customer. In healthcare, patients are your ‘customers’. Not only are returning patients valuable to your healthcare practice but their recommendations are priceless.
Potential patients often look up online reviews or ask friends for recommendations. Patients will also give feedback about ancillary healthcare or specialists to their GP. Therefore, the total patient experience should be positive from the first impression upon entrance, waiting time, consultation through to payment.
Please call the healthcare design experts at Evoke Projects on 1300 720 692 for medical designs and fit-outs to attract and retain patients now and into the future.