Are you delivering a consistent and high quality experience? For every patient? You might think so, but did your patients perceive it that way? Dropping the ball on even a small detail by you or your staff can create the perception of mediocre or inferior service – eroding patient satisfaction and destroying loyalty.[i] In fact, for every mis-step your patients encounter it will take you 12 positive experiences to overcome the lingering negative memory.
Measure to Manage
Its more than just by asking about patient satisfaction. Patients tend to rate their satisfaction high, but many will have complaints about specific aspects of care.
By tracing the touchpoints between you and your patients you’ll gain an understanding of what they experience, what you do well and what needs improvement. Each touchpoint can sour the relationship or create a memorable experience: drive patients closer – or drive them away.
Its best to get bad experiences over with early – including discomfort and long waits. This avoids dread and prevents these experiences from dominating the patient’s memory of the entire encounter. Its also been found that segmenting pleasure, while combining pain is a good formula. Breaking the pleasant experiences into multiple stages (times spent with the doctor, or perhaps frame selection); while blending the unpleasant ones into a single stage (e.g., tonometry
and BIO exam).
You build commitment through choice – people feel happier and more comfortable when they believe they have some control over an uncomfortable process (e.g., calling for break BIO during an exam). As last impressions stay in memories, the ideal experience ends on a positive note.
eyecareScore™ is an evidence based tool for measuring and benchmarking
the patient centeredness of the eyecare experience. For more information contact focalCenter.com.
[i] Why Satisfied Customers Defect, Jones, Sasser, Harvard Business Review 2001
[ii] Chase and Dasu. Want to Perfect Your Company’s Service? Use Behavioral Science, Harvard Business Review, 2001