How to improve your consultation process.
Go back quickly to enquiries
A quick response even during lockdown shows your practice is professional, open for business and one that cares about patients.
Arrange a date / time for your initial chat
Find a time that suits your patients. It might be early morning or after official office hours. Remember the the 9-5 working week has been blown apart in 2020. People are working differently and the rhythms of our lives have been irrevocably changed.
Get your secretary to contact the patient a few hours before
Your time is valuable and no shows are not acceptable to any clinic. Additionally, a courteous friendly reminder demonstrates your practice as professional and on top of things.
Get the tech sorted
Don’t wait until the consultation to decide if the meeting is taking place on Zoom, Skype, Google hangouts or other chosen video platform. Get your secretary to agree the format first. If the patient is not familiar with video conferencing, then get them to set up in advance so that you’re not fiddling around with connections during the consultation.
Make sure your secretary or assistant is up-to-date with all the tech options and can talk the patient through the process. They can always arrange a tech test run first if necessary. It’s important that your consult is about the patient’s health, not about technology.
Invest the time that you, your secretary and the patient would have wasted arranging and commuting to your in-person consultations to make your online consultations as slick as possible. Even in a post-COVID world, telemedicine will continue to play an important role in how you interact with patients.
Get your surroundings set up
Consult in a place that is private, quiet and looks professional. If you’re using a smart phone to conduct video chats then buy a phone stand. Your camera angle should be at head height, not on the desk looking up your nose! If you really want to go pro, then buy a branded portable slide-up banner to be your backdrop which can be zipped up when needed.
Follow up with an email & tentative physical consultation appointment
Ensure you follow up with a polite email putting a tentative date in the diary for an initial consult. Keep them up to date with developments over the coming weeks to maintain that relationship.
When the COVID pandemic is over you will have compiled a database of very warm, motivated enquiries that can all be followed up with in-person consults.