Very early in my medical school training one my mentors referred to our mock patient as the customer of the moment. He said it would not only help you focus on who we are serving but serve as the basis for how you run your business. It was the first time I ever heard that title used for a patient but it makes sense that person is there to purchase the goods that we are selling which in this case was health care. Unfortunately, in the office I have had a few bad customers in the past few weeks so I wanted to write out a plea to all the potential customers out there what we as health care workers would love to see.Because one thing he did stress was that you have to recognize that your patient is the #1 customer but that doesn't mean they are always right.
Show up and on time
- As a customer running late causes everyone to fall behind. Very often the day's scheduled gets pushed down because one appointment ran late in the morning.
Be courteous to the office staff
- I can tell you one thing the easiest way to get dismissed from a practice is being rude to all the ancillary staff. These are people that we work with on a daily basis to make sure our heads don't explode because of all the work that needs to be done so please don't upset them.
Have realistic expectations
- As a customer you should have different expectations when eating at Apple Bees than you do Ruth's Chris, the same should happen when going to see the doctor. You have to know that miracles may not happen in that brief time you see them so being patient and trusting the process will make both of our lives better.
Be Critical but Vocal
- I think this is one of the biggest things any customer can do for a business is let them know when they aren't doing something right so they can fix it. As a physician I may not know that you have difficulty getting to speak to me but if you never tell me and just leave the practice then we both lose. I lose a customer and you lose the chance to be taken care of by the best Internist in South Florida.
Tell your neighbors
- If you are being treated by the best Internist in South Florida[myself], why not tell everyone you know? Customers these days spend so much time writing negative comments online that they forget to mention any of the good things they come into contact with.
And don't worry I definitely plan on writing out what how bad the businesses (health care workers) have been & what we need to do to improve.