According to a recent study, the number of in-person outpatient visits declined by nearly 60 percent in 2020. While there has been a small rebound in the first quarter of 2021, some practices are still struggling to get their patient volumes back to pre-pandemic levels. Telehealth has been able to help fill some of the gaps, but it is simply not enough to consider things as being back to “business as usual.” As vaccines roll out, however, now is a golden opportunity to begin new efforts to invite patients to return to in-person care as well as to invite new patients to your practice.
To help our readers increase patient volume during this slow return to normalcy, this blog will cover a number of methods for getting more patients in the door.
Reassure Patients on Safety Measures
As vaccines roll out for COVID-19, we can see some hope on the horizon. However, there are still warnings that the virus will remain endemic and in our lives for at least a few more years, and that both masking and social distancing will have to continue for the time being. As a result, it is still important to have safety measures in place to reduce risk of infection for patients. You also need to make sure you are letting patients know that your practice is a safe place and that you are taking the appropriate measures to protect them. This will help patients feel less anxious about coming or returning to your practice.
Update Your Practice Website
When was the last time you updated your practice’s website? Most sources agree that any business should update its website once every three to five years. If your website looks outdated, it can lead visitors to assume your practice is out of touch. An up-to-date website with clean graphics and a modern look can help your practice keep a professional appearance and encourage more patients to schedule appointments.
Review Your Online Reputation
Online reputation is one of those things that is easy to neglect. However, it can have serious impacts on the business side of your practice. After all, 97 percent of consumers aged 18-34 read online reviews to judge a business. To make sure your practice isn’t suffering from a poor online reputation, now is a good time to see what folks are saying about you on sites such as Yelp and even Facebook. We’ve done a blog on managing online reviews in the past, as well as one on handling negative reviews. Feel free to check those out if you need a refresher course.
As the year goes on and the ranks of the vaccinated continue to rise, more patients will start returning to healthcare practices. Make sure they feel welcome by taking the steps outlined in this blog and make sure you are getting more patients in the door!
To discover how Nextech can help your practice increase patient volume and maximize profitability, fill out this form and a member of our team will be in touch soon!