The unsightly details in medical practices are often small and thus easily overlooked by busy physicians and staff focused on patient care. Conducting a simple walk-through can help you spot them, but too often this exercise doesn’t extend beyond the waiting area and front desk. Patients probably spend the most time in the exam room. What might they experience there?
• Outdated signs. When patients see last year’s calendar or flu shot notices with expired dates, they may wonder about timeliness and attention to detail.
• Tired wall decor. The painting or wallpaper border that seemed pleasing in Y2K might make patients wonder whether your clinical skills need renewal.
• Untidy surroundings. Hallways used for storing boxes, a messy break room, or a clinical workstation littered with leftover lunch may cause patients to wonder if the untidiness represents larger problems in the practice.
Attending to these small details can help prevent negative assumptions from affecting patient satisfaction.
Adapted from “How to See Your Practice Through Your Patients’ Eyes.”
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