Physicians may not see the benefits in hiring a medical marketer but good marketing can help double or triple your current business. Of Course you’d want to hire an experienced marketer with a resume to back it up; a marketer’s salary can be high depending on what state your practice is located in. You don’t want to be paying a marketer to do a job they are not equipped to do that’s why a candidate needs ample experience listed on his/her resume.
Medical practices are using more technology than ever before and patients can search for a practice on the internet before making an appointment. A marketer can help advertise for your practice on social media and manage your practice’s website. Also, a medical marketer should be utilized to handle public relations; this means they may be working odd hours and not the typical 9 to 5 work day. Remember that a medical marketer does not need a healthcare degree, but he/she should have a good understanding of your practice and your practice’s specialty. A degree in business/marketing may be more suitable, but someone who has worked with a hospital or medical practice before is a necessity. You do not want a marketer who has zero experience working with some type of medical practice. If you feel like your practice can’t afford a new hire you may want to ask your office manager if they can fulfill some of the marketing tasks, but make sure your office manager is on board with these new responsibilities. You want to see results and if your office manager can’t commit to that then you should talk to a financial consultant and see if you can budget to afford a medical marketer even if it’s just part time.
Take the proper steps to hire a medical marketer and be involved in the hiring process. Medical marketers can really help a practice on so many levels; it’s better to hire someone else to do the marketing than trying to treat patients and keep track of public relations and social media.
Most patients can probably recall a time that they felt overlooked or treated in a rude manner by staff at a medical practice. Yes, medical and non-medical staff are very busy throughout the day, but this does not mean patients deserve to feel like they are an annoyance. After all, patients are coming to your practice in need or treatment or diagnosis and they deserved to feel welcomes and cared for.
A good way to get a jump start on creating a patient friendly atmosphere is putting yourself in your patients’ shoes. Take a look around the office, is the waiting room welcoming? A lot of patients often feel intimated when they walk into a waiting room that has tons of signs posted stating co-pays need to be paid at the time of service or about being late for an appointment. Your office has policies for a reason, but posting a bunch of signs may not do the trick. Calling patients to confirm their appointments 24 hours beforehand and reminding them in a polite way about co-payments will actually produce much better results. Sure, there will always be some people who cancel last minute or forget the co-pay, but having a system in place for dealing with minor inconveniences like these will reduce the stress of the staff. You may even consider an opt in text message notification policy like many practices are using today.
If you don’t know something is wrong you can’t fix it – Always make sure the Doctors, Practice Managers, Nurse Practitioners & Physician Assistants ask patients; How has your visit been? How easy was it to schedule your appointment? Are you happy with our practice?…. Patients who are asked for their input feel appreciated. One of the biggest ways to create a welcoming atmosphere starts with good practice management. If the staff feels appreciated, then the office will run happily and efficiently. Having a happy medical staff that is also on top of their game will reduce patient wait time and create a great atmosphere for you, your staff and most of all your patients’.
Practice management is the most significant aspect of a well-organized office. The recruiters at SpineSearch know how important it is for a practice to have great management in order to retain employees. This week we will focus on steps you need to take towards effective practice management.
In order to manage your practice well, you have to establish a well drafted manual of policies your employees will follow. Use probationary periods and have a formal hiring process. If you have a system for hiring, you are less likely to hire employees that will not meet the criteria you are looking for. These tasks may seem difficult but there are huge benefits in establishing an office that runs efficiently.
Set up a meeting for your staff and show both new and experienced employees the new policies. Make sure everyone is on board and understands why you are enforcing these policies. Your goal is to create an office environment that is both positive and structured. Your employees need to feel like they are being heard just as much as you need to feel like you are in charge.
Aim for a healthy sense of control; you know what your employees are up to and they feel like they can come to you with any issues or concerns they have about their jobs. Communication goes a long way in an office setting; you can retain employees better if you establish a good working relationship with them.
Practice management can feel like a daunting task, but if you start out with a clear set of standards before you hire your next employee you will see a huge improvement in the overall flow of your office.
Here are four steps to remember:
1) Empower and Inform: Practice owners should monitor employees in a constructive way.
2) Talk and Listen to People: Spend one-on-one time with employees. The more you know about your practice, the better it will function.
3) Let People Work at their Highest Purpose: Give positive reinforcement. Encourage your employees to take on more responsibilities at work.
4) Follow up and Be Consistent: Set specific goals and timelines, have weekly meetings to catch up with what everyone is working on.
While many of us Spine Professionals spend our day helping others with back pain we thought this week we would offer some advice on how to care for your own back.
Taking care of your spine early on will promote spine health in the future. There are many ways to strengthen and preserve your spine so back pain will not overcome daily activities. Maintaining good posture no matter what activities you are doing will help keep your spine aligned. If you have good posture, you will be able to do other activities, like working out, without back pain.
Sleep can have negative effects on your spine health if done incorrectly. Everyone sleeps differently, but whether you are a back, side or stomach sleeper there are ways to improve. If you sleep on your back, you should sleep with a pillow underneath your knees and lower back. If you sleep on your side you should sleep with a pillow between your legs. Stomach sleepers have the most disadvantages because sleeping on your stomach is least fit way to improve spine health while you sleep, but if you are and avid stomach sleeper, you should snooze with a pillow under your stomach to help align your spine. The point is to keep your body in the straightest line possible even when you’re sleeping.
Exercising is great for your back health. Building muscle and improving your balance will help your spine stay aligned all on its own! Yoga is a great way to stretch your back muscles, improve posture, balance, and blood circulation. Have your doctor do a scoliosis check at yearly check-ups. Stretch when you wake up in the morning and before you go to bed. All of these examples will help you promote your spine health in order to avoid chronic pain or surgeries in the future.
Calling all Chief Orthopedic and Neurological Surgery Residents
SpineSearch is excited about a unique recruitment project, and thrilled to be partnering with a highly esteemed orthopedic teaching facility in the southern US to refer PGY5 orthopedic surgery residents, chief neurosurgery residents, general orthopedic surgery fellows and attending orthopedic surgeons to attend an ACMGE accredited spine fellowship program to commence August 2012.
The fellowship offers physicians the opportunity to train in an academic environment that functions as a private clinic. Over 10 faculty surgeons in the institute treat degenerative, spinal deformities and traumatic injuries to the spine. The setting and environment are also conducive to learning the business aspects of starting and running a practice.
This opportunity is also open to International Medical Graduates who have completed a minimum of 2 years of consecutive post-graduate training in the US at an ACGME accredited program (typically Fellowships) in an orthopedic surgery specialty. Valid ECFMG, completion and pass scores on all three USMLE exams also required.
The institute is offering a compensation package in the range of 80K, depending on the amount of shared ER call taken, in addition to 10 days paid vacation. Further, 8 paid days are offered for CME and to attend conferences.
The facility is located in a charming southern town, with warm weather and a low cost of living. It is an easy commute to major metropolitan areas, has excellent school systems and a variety of activities to pursue. A 6-month program is also being offered for attending orthopedic surgeons who are looking to add spine to their practice.
Interested parties should contact Tom.sullivan@spine-search for more information.