ENHANCING PATIENT COMPLIANCE – Golden Pearls from Dr. Dan Golden
Regardless of who you are, where you practice, how long you’ve been in practice the simple fact is there are two problems common to every practice:
1. Mismanagement Of Time
By all members of the office staff INCLUDING the doctor(s).
2. Lack Of Patient Compliance
Patients not following through with what the doctor feels is in his or her
best interest regardless of the recommendations made.
Every potential patient….EVERY potential patient has five questions they want their doctor to answer. Oh…. they may not vocalize these questions but be assured they have them:
1. Do you know what’s wrong with me?
2. Do you think you can help me?
3. How long will it take?
4. How much will it cost?
5. How can I pay for it?
The sooner these questions are answered…..to the satisfaction of the patient….the greater the compliance.
How can you answer these questions if they haven’t been asked? Incorporate a “script.” I am well aware many “professionals” think scripts are unprofessional. Think about it….put yourself in the patients shoes.
I suggest a pre-consultation dialogue. Before you ever get into the consultation ask the patient if they will comply with what you feel is in their best interest by using a script. Just a minute or so with 8 very simple, very direct questions.
1. Before we get started I want to tell you how I do things at my office….okay? (Wait for an indication they understand….either yes or a nod of the head)
2. Whenever I accept a patient there are only two things I am really interested in: (1) can I find out what is wrong with you and (2) can I help you.
3. For these reasons I’ll be asking you a lot of questions so I can get to the bottom of your problem as rapidly as possible.
4. All I want is for you to provide clear, concise answers….okay? (Wait for a response).
5. Not only am I interested in what is wrong with you and whether or not I can help you I am equally concerned with the high cost of health care today.
6. I promise you I won’t do any tests, therapy or treatment unless I feel it is absolutely necessary.
7. So….if I find out what’s wrong with you, if I feel I can help you all I ask is for you to cooperate with whatever I feel is in your best interest.
8. Do you feel you will be able to cooperate with the recommendations I may make in your case? (At this point any possible objections will likely be surfaced and can be dealt with). Once dealt with your final comment is……GREAT….LET’S GET STARTED!!