5 Ways to Create Loyal Patients and Improve Retention
Increasing patient retention rates by 5% can increase profits by more than 25%.1 Patient loyalty, rather than simply satisfaction, is essential to the financial success of your organization. While satisfaction may indicate a patient’s happiness, it does not measure their likelihood of loyal patronage. Satisfied patients may even self-discharge more than a dissatisfied patient because they feel their treatment has run its course and they are “cured”.
The ROI of Loyalty
Loyalty, on the other hand, takes the entire continuum of care into perspective. Here are four reasons to focus on loyalty instead of just satisfaction:
- Consumerism: Value-based care puts the patient first and increases their influence on your bottom line.
- Repeat Customers: Loyal patients, just like loyal shoppers or rewards club members, return to an establishment where their experience was positive.
- Prompt & Punctual: Loyal patients respect your time, craft, and care. They are less likely to self-discharge, cancel or no-show.
- Word-of-Mouth Marketing: Loyal patients will tell their friends and family about your level of care. They act as walking advertisements and social proofing for your organization.
Patient-centered care is at the core of these four reasons. And while patient satisfaction plays a role in achieving loyalty, it is only one part of developing a devoted community of lifelong patients.
The 5 Steps to Loyal Patients
To build a patient’s long-term allegiance, focus on these five steps:
Provide World Class Care
The quality of the experience drives loyalty.2 Take advantage of MedBridge’s 700+ accredited course library and Learning Management System to ensure consistent, confident, and informed care across clinics or providers. Freeman Health saw a 19% increase in their national outcomes ranking (FOTO) rising from the 41st percentile to 60th when they started using the MedBridge CE tools.3
Use Engaging and Relevant HEP/Patient Education
More than 40% of patients sustain significant risks by misunderstanding, forgetting, or ignoring healthcare advice!4 Video-based, home exercise programs prescribed in achievable doses improve adherence and improve the chances of a positive outcome. The MedBridge library features over 4,800+ video exercises and 230+ educational videos, all able to be emailed, texted, printed or sent to a Patient Mobile App (MedBridge GO), for ease of access.
Create a Brand and Market it Constantly
Ongoing communication and custom branding puts your practice and care top-of-mind. The average American checks their mobile device 47 times throughout the day.5 Use patient apps like MedBridge GO to take advantage of this face time. MedBridge’s HEP patient portal and Patient Mobile App also feature custom branding options to create a uniform presentation of your organization’s logo and messaging across all patient-facing software.
Foster a Culture of Open Communication
Patients report that maintaining the relationship with their provider via good communication increases care satisfaction and likelihood of adherence to prescribed treatment.6 Stay in touch and check-in with patients to increase both care adherence and their familiarity with your clinic. The MedBridge Patient Relationship Manager, NPS, and GO are an effective means to maintain communication with your patient.
Let Data and Metrics Influence Your Management Decisions
Satisfaction may not be directly indicative of loyalty, but a single point increase in your Net Promoter Score can translate to increased profits of $1,443 per patient per day.7 MedBridge supports your patient satisfaction improvement efforts. Both NPS and outcomes data are integrated into the MedBridge platform so it’s easy to analyze your organization’s level of service from treatment outcome to patient satisfaction.
Going Above and Beyond
Patient loyalty boils down to a measurement of your organization’s success throughout the continuum of care, from patient intake to evaluation and treatment, and finally to discharge and re-engagement. MedBridge’s comprehensive platform provides a solution for every step of the way.
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- Broderick, A., and Lindeman, D. “Scaling Telehealth Programs: Lessons from Early Adopters.” Case Studies in Telehealth Adoption. Commonwealth Fund pub. 1654 Vol. 1 (2013)
- Martin LR, Williams SL, Haskard KB, DiMatteo MR. The challenge of patient adherence. Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management. 2005;1(3):189-199.
- Ha JF, Longnecker N. Doctor-Patient Communication: A Review. The Ochsner Journal. 2010;10(1):38-43.
- Garman, A. “Patient satisfaction as a predictor of return to-provider behavior: analysis and assessment of financial implications.” Quality Management in Health Care 2004; 13(1) pp.75-80.