If your approach to patient recare has consisted of the Postcard Method, it might be the culprit in the Case of Disappearing Patients.
The success rate of sending postcards is only about 9.6% and continually decreasing, while the price tag for your practice continues to get higher. People are increasingly sensitive to the environmental impact of snail-mail solicitation. The digital method illustrates that a practice is environmentally responsible, and technologically up to speed. As opposed to the mass-mailed postcard, an email or text message appears to have a personal touch, making it less likely to be disregarded. Using technology for recare is more effective, more efficient, more environmentally responsible and less expensive.
Below are the three consecutive steps to a successful GREEN recare plan, all of which are done more effectively without the use of a postcard.
Technology offers us simple tools for relationship building. Regular, unobtrusive contact makes patients feel communicated with instead of solicited to. Create monthly e-newsletters, invite them to your social media pages, and send automated birthday messages. It’s important to show that you’re thinking of them if you want them to think of you even when their mouths are healthy.
Education is an excellent method of non-solicitous engagement. When you send newsletters digitally, you have unlimited options for including articles and expert advice to grab their attention. By using email contact lists, you are able to send patient-relevant information to increase the impact; if you are using a patient engagement platform, find out if it offers the use of its analytic tools to send newsletters to criteria-specific groups more easily and accurately.
With the relationship established, approaching patients for recare is seen as a helpful reminder instead of an attempt at generating business. Send a subtle email reminding them of the importance of 6-month checkup with an appointment scheduling button/link, or set up automated reminder text messages.
By digitally engaging, educating, and then inviting them for recare appointments, you’ll subtly form long-lasting relationships with your patients. Not only will they come to you with even the smallest complaint, but you’ll add “routine checkups” to the healthy patient’s hygiene repertoire.