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How To Keep Patients Coming Back to Your Clinic

By Vahe Tirakyan
| 4/3/2023
4 min read

Did you know it typically costs around 5 times more to attract a new patient than to retain an existing one? 

Patient loyalty really is the key to long-term success for any health or medical clinic, however, building patient loyalty is often easier said than done. In fact, with 23% of patients seeing three or more primary care physicians every two years, losing a patient to one of your competitors is easier than you think.

If you want to know how to keep patients coming back, this is what you need to do…

How to Keep Patients Coming Back—The Key to Long-term Growth

Consider the patient experience

Patient loyalty largely depends on the experience you provide—and this doesn’t just apply to the treatment room. It applies to every touch point along the patient journey, including:

  • viewing your advertising collateral
  • visiting your website
  • booking an appointment
  • the information provided prior to an appointment
  • arriving/parking at the clinic
  • the greeting they receive at reception
  • the presentation of waiting areas
  • post-treatment care
  • ongoing communications

Consider all touch points from the perspective of a patient, analyze what the experience is like, and look for ways to enhance that experience.

Make it really easy to book appointments

It’s always best to lock in a patients’ next appointment time while they’re still in-clinic, however this isn’t always necessary or suitable.

Providing an online booking system where patients can easily search through appointment availability to find a suitable time is not only convenient for patients, but it will also free up time for receptionists to focus on helping patients in-clinic.

Ensure appointments run to schedule

Your patient’s time is precious, so finding ways to keep waiting time to a minimum is sure to keep patients happy.

While it’s not always possible, try to ensure appointments don’t run for longer than the allocated time. If necessary, build “catch up” time into your physician’s schedule to account for any unavoidable delays and keep everything running smoothly.

Ensure you’re across patient details

It can be a great source of frustration for patients if they need to recite their entire medical or treatment history each time they visit your clinic. 

Investing in a quality patient record management system and ensuring key treatment details are recorded at each visit will make it easier for physicians to provide a more personal service, and better continuity of treatment—just ensure all systems are HIPPA-compliant.

Diversify your service offering

Most patients value being able to source a variety of services under one roof.

While the range of services you can provide will depend on the type of clinic you’re operating and your medical qualification, consider if you could offer any complimentary treatments or services which could appeal to current patients, while also driving more business to your clinic.

Stay in regular contact

Just like any type of relationship, it’s important to keep in regular contact if you want to build a solid, long-lasting bond with your patients.

Sending regular email updates, staying active on social media and inviting patients along to events or new treatment launches are all great ways of keeping in touch and staying front of mind with your patients after they leave the clinic.

Ask for feedback, and act on it

Not sure why patients visit your clinic once then never return? Asking for feedback could be the key to uncovering what’s really going on.

While some clinics ask their patients to complete a feedback form while they’re still in-clinic, in most cases, patients won’t provide a very detailed or honest response if there’s a line of patients waiting in line behind them or the receptionist is peering over. Instead, sending a quick email or SMS following an appointment with a link to an online feedback form is a great way to capture more honest, detailed feedback.

Need a Helping Hand from The Professionals?

As experts in everything from medical digital marketing to online reputation management, the team at MD Logica are experts at creating real and sustainable practice growth.

Contact us to see how we can support your health or medical clinic.

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