Healthcare providers enter the field to help people, and urgent care providers are on the front lines of local wellbeing. But in a world where there are many options for urgent care, how do you develop a loyal patient pool? Creating patient loyalty can be incredibly difficult, but there are ways to entice people back through your door.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, patients have interacted differently with care providers, and that autonomy has created a field of options. Urgent care providers need to create a frictionless experience that makes it easy for them to choose your clinic, time and again. Patient experience is the most critical aspect of what you do.
Booking Made Easy
The old saying is true... you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Your booking page is the patient's first interaction with your clinic, so it needs to be aesthetically appealing and easy to use.
Since the onset of the pandemic, online booking has grown significantly, accounting for nearly 50% of visits. Why? Because online booking offers all the information you need with a few clicks. Patients want to know how much a visit will cost and how long they will have to wait for an appointment, so displaying a transparent pricing structure and all open appointments across locations can give patients an accurate picture of what they will experience at the clinic.
Offering telemedicine also increases interest from many patients. When telemedicine visits are offered through the same scheduling platform as in-person visits, it makes it easy for patients to see all their options and choose the most convenient and often fastest option for care.
But booking is more than just picking an appointment time and location. With digital preregistration, it makes it easy to fill out medical histories, receive HIPAA disclosures, and upload medical and payment information, all without stepping out of the house. And once that’s done, it will never take more than two clicks to book another appointment. That level of ease makes it enticing to return.
Care Experience Counts
Nobody likes sitting in the waiting room–stale coffee and older magazines, random chit chatters, and the potential for cross-contamination mean that waiting rooms are the bane of most patients’ existence. Creating a smooth booking and digital registration cuts down on time in the office. That’s the first step to a happy patient.
But once a patient has checked in, it’s up to you to make their experience memorable. One way to do that is to take some stress off front office staff. Integrating digital registration with your EMR system can take one task off your front office’s shoulders. A recent case study showed that digital registration saved nearly 300 hours of labor over one quarter for one multi-location urgent care. Giving your staff that time back can result in a more refreshed, helpful team.
Your healthcare providers make the real difference. One of the biggest complaints in modern medicine is the lack of one-on-one time with providers. If your front office can load balance appropriately, your care team will have more time to devote to each patient, creating an opportunity for a more personalized and attentive experience.
When choosing another urgent care, would you rather go to someone that took the time to listen or one that rushed through your appointment? That focus on patient care can be a huge loyalty driver. And if your staff connects on a personal level, your patients may be more likely to share feedback that can help drive new patients through the doors.
Make Payment Painless
Once your patients have booked online and had a great experience with your care team, paying should be just as painless. With an online booking platform like Solv, you can set up a payment method during digital registration, making paying their bill as simple as a click on the website or app.
While many patients may pay out of pocket for urgent care, displaying insurance information can also be helpful. When patients know what is covered and what isn’t, they can proceed with their care plan with their eyes open.
Patients have so many choices for urgent care, so it’s more important than ever to offer efficient service from caring providers. While data shows that the availability of appointments is often the driving force behind potential patients’ choices, bringing them back after booking can be as simple as elevating their customer experience to one that they remember fondly.