One of the most important relationships a person has is with their doctor, and these days technology can make this relationship better.
A good physician-patient relationship leads to patients who are better informed about their health, more comfortable asking questions, and more likely to return for annual visits and checkups. Developing stronger relationships is on the top of every medical professionals’ to-do list, whether they are a doctor, a nurse, or a rheumatology practice manager.
Luckily, there are many ways to engage patients, and one of the latest is through technology. Keep reading for four ways to foster stronger relationships with your patients using technology.
Interact with patients outside of the office virtually.
Physicians and medical staff can use mobile technology, such as video chat and instant message, to communicate with patients between visits. If patients have a question or need assistance but don’t have the time or ability to make an appointment, these visits can be held virtually.
Virtual visits are a great way to coach patients, educate them, and keep them motivated. Just remember that any platform you use must be HIPAA compliant to protect the privacy of your patient and your practice.
Connect with patients on social media.
Using Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram is an excellent way to connect with your patients and make them feel more comfortable with your practice. While you cannot and should not share personal medical information in a public forum, you can create a business page for your practice and share general health tips and information about your practice.
Providing a behind-the-scenes look at your practice, along with some personal details about your staff, is a relatable way for patients to feel as if they “know” you. This increases trust and loyalty and will make them more comfortable coming in for an appointment.
Implement a patient portal.
Patients often have questions about their medical history, test results, current medications, and so on. Answering these queries outside of an appointment can be time-consuming for practice staff, and they may not be able to provide the answers as quickly as patients would like.
A robust patient portal puts the patient in the driver’s seat. They can access their medical record anytime from anywhere, simply logging into the secured system with a password. This real-time access allows patients to obtain information without taking staff off task quickly. Providers can also upload educational materials to the portal that patients can refer to if they need them.
Monitor your online reviews.
World-of-mouth is still the best way to market your practice and nowhere does news travel faster than on the internet. There are many sites, such as Facebook and Yelp, where patients will share their experience at your practice with other patients, for better and for worse.
It’s a great idea to monitor those sites and address any negative feedback you receive quickly, thoroughly, and—if possible—publicly. This will help preserve your good reputation and help your patients trust you.
Fostering relationships with patients using technology creates a stronger patient practice bond and builds loyalty that is crucial to your practice. We hope these tips help you find new ways to connect with and engage your patients!
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