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Make Your Waiting Areas Work for You

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Don't ignore your waiting rooms. It is the most important part of your practice or health system. It is where your patient's first impressions are made and where they spend the most time. By following our easy tips, you will make your waiting areas more productive for the patient and more profitable for you.

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Make Your Waiting Areas Work for You

  1. 1. Start Making Your Waiting Areas Work for You Or Start Engaging Your Patients from the Jump 1
  2. 2.  Start the coordination of care between patients and providers as soon as they enter the waiting areas for their appointments  Improvement strategies range from a friendly receptionist to cleaner lighting to increasing patient engagement  The goal is to make the patient experience more friendly and personal while helping patients stay within your provider network. 2 Executive Summary
  3. 3.  Background  Declaw the Dragon Lady  Declutter the Paper Storm  Décor (Nothing Clever Here)  Denounce Standard Care  Demystify Your Goals  Action Plan  Summary and Questions Agenda 3
  4. 4.  Studies show that the staff friendliness influences a visit more than any other factor.  A patient’s first point of contact is your receptionist and the other front office staff. This tends to be an intimidating area for the patient. Declaw the Dragon Lady 4
  5. 5.  Encourage the receptionist and the rest of the front office staff to be:  Friendly  Empathetic  Patient  Helpful  Without happy patients, the practice cannot exist Declaw the Dragon Lady 5
  6. 6.  Once the patient is at the reception area, they are overwhelmed with notes, rules, and paperwork taped to or placed on the desk area.  Encourage each office to create a welcome packet that can be sent electronically or is handed to the patient when they check in. Declutter the Paper Storm 6
  7. 7.  If that is not possible, create an announcement booklet that each patient receives upon check in.  Uncluttered areas look more inviting, professional and calming.  Make sure your first impressions are favorable. Declutter the Paper Storm 7
  8. 8.  The waiting area needs to be clean, well lit, clear, and inviting.  The waiting area needs to be as clean as the examination rooms. Dirty or well worn tables and chairs reflect poorly. Décor 8
  9. 9.  The lighting needs to be bright, but not retailer bright. Patients should be able to read your paperwork easily.  Chairs and tables need to be placed with walkers and wheelchairs in mind. It should be easy for any patient to reach any section of the seating area.  The color scheme should be warm and inviting. Replace outdated decorations, photos, and color schemes. Décor 9
  10. 10. 10
  11. 11.  Show the patients that the old way of patient care is dead.  Change the energy of your offices.  Explain in layman terms what your health system does and why the patient should care. Denounce Standard Care 11
  12. 12.  Treat the patients in a humanized and personal way.  Create a culture of on time, on point service.  Eliminate the old stigma of health care. Denounce Standard Care 12
  13. 13.  Explain very clearly and concisely to patients:  What the path and goal of their treatment plan is  How in network providers contribute to this process  How ancillary providers like DME/Pharmacy contribute  How their office staff can guide through this process Demystify Your Goals 13
  14. 14. How to Execute This? 14
  15. 15.  Create a continuity of care through all your network providers  Customer Service Training  Onboarding Forms that can be reused by the patient throughout network  Consistent Messaging in Waiting and Exam Rooms  Patient First Mentality How to Execute This? 15
  16. 16.  Require all personnel who deal with patients to undergo basic customer service training:  Rule #1- Employees who are treated well in turn treat your patients well  Rule #2- Employees who treat patients well in turn get treated well by most patients  Several consultants that we can recommend Customer Service Training 16
  17. 17.  Create a series of forms that apply for every office and make a copy for the patient to use at other offices.  Saves time, reduces stress of seeing a new doctors, and empowers the patient.  Becomes a “selling point” when recommending referrals Consistent Onboarding Forms 17
  18. 18.  Patient Navigation should start during the patient’s down time in the waiting and exam rooms.  Explore a customized, digital patient education network that connects your providers to your patients at their time of need.  This is our expertise Consistent Messaging in Waiting and Exam Rooms 18
  19. 19.  Halo Health’s digital patient navigation/education network provides customized information about your health system:  Community and Individual Patient Care Programs  Ancillary Service Providers  Individual Office and Staff Specialties  Key Initiatives on Preventative Health  General Health and Wellness Information  Speak directly to your patients and caregivers to give them options for their care that keep them in your health system. 19 Digital Patient Education Overview
  20. 20.  Educate patients about your health system’s events and happenings:  Grand Openings  Clinics and Classes  Portal Information  Patient Navigator Contact Information  Case Manager Contact Information  Community Outreach Events  Cause Events and other Corporate Sponsorships Community and Individual Care Programs 20
  21. 21.  Introduce patients to the specialists they may see as part of their treatment plan of action:  Radiology  Therapists  Nutritionists  Labs  Health/Fitness Centers  Tandem Specialists (i.e. Pulmonologist in Cardiology office)  DME, Pharmacies, and other Suppliers  Closest to their home does not always help you with EMR updates, medication management, etc. Ancillary Service Providers 21
  22. 22.  Inform patients about their physician’s specialty and office staff:  Physician Profiles  Staff Profiles  Office Hours, Emergency Contact Info  Insurances Accepted  Office Sub-specialties  Community Involvement of Staff  Open Houses and Other Patient Engagement Events Individual Office and Staff Specialties 22
  23. 23.  Explain your health system’s initiatives and their patient benefits:  Patient Safety  Fall Prevention  Disease Mgmt- Diabetes, Smoking Cessation, COPD  Home Based Services  Reduction of Readmissions- at home monitoring  Medication Adherence and Compliance  And tell the patient why your health system cares- to help them manage their health better and with better results. Key Initiatives on Preventative Health 23
  24. 24.  Augment your information with our content library from respected sources like the AHRQ, AMA, ADA, CDC, and more:  Diet, Exercise, Nutrition  Smoking Cessation, COPD  Diabetes Management and Prevention  Cold, Cough, Flu Prevention  Cancer Screenings  Alzheimer's, Dementia, Parkinson’s  Monthly Topical Subjects that Follow National Campaigns- Breast Cancer/Prostate Cancer Awareness General Health and Wellness Information 24
  25. 25.  The basic mechanisms of the program are:  Each waiting area in your clinics, private offices, and specialty office will receive an education system that is focused on your services and specialties. Halo Health will manage the equipment, installation, and content. We only need access to the internet.  Each system will cost about $125 per month to cover expenses and to eliminate advertisers. This keeps the network tailored to your needs.  Each office has control over the subject matter minus the “core” content about you. Digital Patient Education Program 25
  26. 26. Develop a Patient-First Mentality 26
  27. 27.  Patient First Mentality means creating a culture that cultivates caring, connecting and compassion  Caring about the patient outcomes, patient experience, and your health systems  Connecting patients to the providers they need, when they need them  Compassionate to the patient and their plight to good health Patient First Mentality 27
  28. 28.  Employees are incented on quality of care not just quantity  Employees are rewarded both monetarily and publicly for their over and above acts  Employee and patient nominations should be encouraged  Tie all incentive plans to parts of the Quality Measures that they can control Patient First Mentality 28
  29. 29.  Disease Prevention is rewarded as well as Treatment  Invest in Preventative Health Measures  Promote Community Events that impact patient health  Incentivize for early detection and intervention on preventable diseases Patient First Mentality 29
  30. 30.  Five Key Ways to Start Making Your Waiting Room Work for You:  Declaw the Dragon Lady  Declutter the Paper Storm  Décor  Denounce Standard Care  Demystify Your Goals Summary 30
  31. 31.  Execute this strategy through:  Customer Service Training  Consistent Onboarding Forms  Consistent Messaging in Waiting and Exam Rooms  Patient First Mentality Summary 31
  32. 32.  Halo Health are Consistent Messaging Experts using Digital Patient Navigation/Education systems:  Community/ Patient Care Programs  Ancillary Service Providers  Individual Office and Staff Specialties  Key Initiatives on Preventative Health  General Health and Wellness Information Summary 32
  33. 33. Halo Health International is a provider of customized Digital Patient Education systems to Healthcare Offices nationwide. To learn more, contact Jim Cucinotta at jim@haloheals.com or 856-520-8655. 33

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