Five Ideas for Preparing your Patients for Treatment

Getting ready for different treatments can be a major source of anxiety for many patients. Making sure your patients are relaxed and comfortable will make them happier and in the end, will make your job easier. Happy and relaxed patients lead to a superior practice and a good bottom line. Here are five ideas for preparing your patients for treatment.

Make sure they are prepared.

Before the patient’s appointment, make sure he or she knows what to expect. Send all his or her paperwork ahead of time and include details about the appointment itself as well as anything they should do beforehand. While your patient may feel nervous about the details of the day, allowing them time to reflect and prepare will reduce his or her anxiety.

Is your waiting room comfortable?

Does your waiting room feel cozy and welcoming, or cold and sterile? Your waiting room is the first part your practice that your patient encounters, so it will set the stage for his or her entire visit. Warm lighting, comfortable furniture and soothing paint colors can create a feeling of peace and relaxation rather than anxiety and distress.

Set the tone.

Be sure your appointments are running on schedule. Allowing patients too much time to sit and think creates frustration, and that frustration can quickly turn into unease. When it’s time to meet with your patients, you set the tone. Be punctual, efficient and firm while still allowing your patient time to voice concerns or ask questions.

Be empathetic.

Acknowledge your patient’s feelings and concerns and let them know that it’s okay to express themselves. Listening without judgement helps patients realize that they are not alone and helps to ease tension and anxiety.

Provide information.

Studies show a lot of patient anxiety stems from the unknown. Take the time to talk with your patients before their treatments and provide them with realistic and detailed information. Providing this information up front creates an important relationship of trust and reliability between doctor and patient.

Empathy and preparation are a huge part of ensuring patient comfort, but atmosphere and information are also important factors to consider. Implementing these ideas will help in lessening anxiety and building a positive relationship between patient and doctor.

What techniques does your office use to prepare patients for treatment appointments? We would love to hear about them on our Facebook page!

Posted by
  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

What We Offer

We’re adding value to practices across the nation by creating a thriving community of rheumatology managers and physicians.

Membership Benefits

Become a Member

Annual Conference

Conference Registration

The latest industry developments are at your fingertips.

Subscribe to the Rheumatology Practice Management newsletter for more innovation.