Are you giving your patients the care they need?
There are so many reasons to make your patients your priority. Giving your patients the care they deserve will make you a better doctor. And your patients will have the best chance at getting and staying healthy.
Even if you fill in for someone’s absence and work locum tenens, you still must keep quality patient care in mind.
The bottom line is it doesn’t matter if you’re a nurse, physician, or sign-on as a locum tenens physician. Every type of physician should focus on keeping their patients at the forefront of their minds.
To practice quality patient care, here are some ways to give your all to your patients.
1. Show You’re Thankful
You’ve no doubt put a lot of hard work into creating a successful medical career. But your success isn’t due to your actions alone. Your patients have a lot to do with your achievements as well!
So to continue to do well as a doctor, make it a habit to express gratitude to your patients.
You can exhibit that you’re thankful for your patients by verbally telling them, “Thank you for choosing our hospital!” It would be best to say this while using their name and maintaining eye contact so you seem sincere.
Another idea is to send out birthday cards and reward them when they refer a patient. Sticking a gift card or thank you card in the mail can make all the difference and remind patients you’re there for them.
Plus, the more they feel appreciated, the more likely they will refer you to their friends and family!
2. Be an Active Listener
Even if you’re in a time crunch and need to get to the next patient, it’s still vital to retain professionality. Actively listening to your patients reveals that you understand their concerns. Listening attentively also tells that you desire to help them find a solution.
To demonstrate you’re listening, do the following:
- Maintain eye contact
- Lean forward during the conversation
- Have them repeat any details for accuracy
- Prolong the appointment if you need more time with them
Another thing to keep in mind during the appointment is to not muli-task. It’s alright if you write down what they’re telling you, but don’t let your mind wander.
Keeping your attention on them and them alone is vital. Paying attention will ensure you make them your priority now and in the future.
3. Give Them a Say in Their Care Plan
It’s easy to give your patient your spiel on what you feel they should do to get better. But engaging your patients in their care plan is a vital part of their recovery.
Throughout the process, you must encourage questions. And it would also be wise if you also gave them a say in their treatment.
So, be open to their ideas and listen to what their needs are. It’ll likely make their recovery go by faster and give them confidence in you as a doctor.
A few other ways to engage them are by giving them resources to make informed decisions about their health. Examples are providing links to websites so they can learn more about their health condition. And, you can also offer them resources that explain other treatment options.
By being open to their thoughts and concerns, you’ll become a better communicator. Plus, you’ll put everyone’s minds at ease.
4. Make Your Practice Family-Centered
Depending on the patient’s wishes, you should do your best to involve their family.
A patient is more likely to recover when they have the support of their family and friends. So, it’s up to you as their physician to get their family involved.
If the patient has a family caretaker, it’s especially imperative to inform them every step of the way. They should have a voice and be able to ask any questions throughout the treatment process.
A treatment plan must be collaborative. Why is that? Throughout the process, both patient and the physician learn to trust in one another.
That trust and positive relationship building improve a patient’s treatment and recovery.
5. Request Feedback
It’s hard to improve as a physician if you don’t know what you’re doing wrong and right.
Asking for feedback during an appointment or via surveys via email are two ways to find out how you’re doing.
Your patient should feel comfortable relaying how their experience with you has been. However, they may be hesitant to let you know their thoughts. If they seem apprehensive, reassure them their feedback will help you change and improve things.
Based on what you find out, of course, it’s smart to continue to focus on what works. For example, they may like that you follow up with them to see how they’re feeling after an appointment.
It’s the same way for things they feel you need to improve. Based on their feedback, make the changes necessary to enhance your relationship with your patients.
Caring for your patients is vital, and you can only do that if you know how to improve. Keep in touch with your patients and always welcome their feedback. Communicating will allow you to focus on your strengths and improve your weaknesses.
Embracing ways to facilitate patient-centered care is a positive approach to improved healthcare. Focus on doing things like active listening and allow your patients to voice their opinions. Actions like these will prove to them that you’re available and want what’s best for them.
Continuing to show up for your patients is something you must never wane on. You may get busy as a physician and have an overflow of patients. While it’s good for your business, it may not always be the best for your patients.
Keeping your patient’s health front and center will positively affect everyone. So, stay on your toes and always search for ways to give your patients the best experience possible.