In this week’s blog, we’d like to continue our GLUE Customer Experience series and provide our five remaining items. As you recall from our last blog, GLUE stands for Giving Little Unexpected Extras. We believe that no matter how small the cost or effort, just giving a little something extra will go a long way in assuring your patients that you are part of their care team. Here are the final five ideas for you.
Giving Little Unexpected Extras – Final Five
- Take home messages – Except for the cost of printing these forms, these can be an inexpensive way to communicate visit discussion points, new medication(s) and instructions to your patients. Explaining what you’ve written and giving them to patients assures that you are both on the sampe page. Our blog on Patient Communication provides an example of a completed take home message.
- Referral Patient Networks and Tweet Chats – CenterWatch has a site that lists Health Associations, Patient Organizations, and Blogs that provide resources and community involvement for patients with similar conditions. For me personally, being a member of the Adult Congenital Heart Association assures me that I am not alone and that there are other patients who experience the same health issues as me. The ACHA offers monthly webinars for patients whereby healthcare providers talk about patients’ concerns. In addition, there are regional and annual meetings where patients gather with healthcare providers. Of course, there are the healthcare tweet chats that we’ve previously discussed. Check out our blog on Healthcare Tweet Chats to see if any chats might be relevant and helpful to your patients.
- Referral Cost Estimator – Since physicians usually refer patients to certain facilities for additional testing, why not obtain costs for procedures you are likely to request and provide patients with a Cost Estimator. Alternatively, check to see if the facility you refer patients to can assist patients in this area. Some insurance plans and hospitals themselves are already providing this information to patients who request it.
- Patient Medication Assistance – Your free pharmaceutical samples help patients begin a new medication regime. However, what if they cannot afford the prescriptions you prescribe? Check out RxAssist, a program dedicated to helping needy patients obtain the financial assistance they need so they can stay on their prescribed medications. In addition, pharmaceuticals can provide assistance to patients who qualify financially.
- Waiting Room Resources – In our previous blog, we mentioned providing recipes to patients whom you may want to place on an alternate diet. Since you may be seeing many patients with the same conditions, why not have a few copies of healthy cookbooks in your waiting room for patients to peruse while waiting? A few suggestions are the American Heart Associations Low-Salt Cookbook, their Low Fat, Low Cholesterol Cookbook and the American Diabetes Comfort Food Cookbook.
What ideas for Giving Little Unexpected Extras do you have? We’d love to know. Share your comments below.
Image Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/45/Seattle_physician_with_patient_1999.jpg