Friday, April 22, 2011

The Doctor's Office and Customer Service

A visit to the doctor's office can produce a multitude of observations on customer service. I've had several doctors over the years - they kept retiring on me - and so have had the chance to see a variety of offices.

My current physician, an internal medicine man, has a fairly nice waiting room, not award-winning but comfortable. Most of the other waiting areas were reminiscent of old bus stations. Do I touch the germ-filled magazines or watch the dreck on television? [I never touch the magazines and always bring a book.] It seems that many medical offices now have a "medicine channel" running on a wall screen as if people who are worried about their current medical condition might be interested in whether they have others.

Many a monster story is told of the dragons at the front desk. (My current doctor has a nice front desk team.) I know they're juggling a lot. If they are reasonably friendly and efficient, then I'm fine.

The key customer moment, of course, comes in the examination room. [Such rooms, I should note, have far too many pictures of internal organs. How about some nature scenes?] The experience is measured by the demeanor, the questions, the amount of time, and the conclusions that I receive from the doctor. One reason why internal medicine doctors are my preference is I've found them to be the intellectuals of the breed. They give far more time and attention than the "thump you on the back and listen to your chest" characters who spend a maximum of ten minutes before sending you off with a prescription.

I once dropped a doctor who, although in internal medicine, seemed hurried. He set a record for the fastest annual physical in history. My wife later asked me if I'd had my physical exam and I replied, "I think so."

So the common customer service thread to all of this seems to be respect: Is respect for the patient shown in the physical surroundings, the behavior of the support staff, and the manner and quality of the examination? Call it the Rodney Dangerfield Syndrome.


Scott said...

Such a great site, which doctors has busy schedule someone who entertain their clients. The customer service center which make the clients ask their schedule for the doctors. Thanks for posting this article.

medical billing specialist said...

Some would refer to it as patients service and hospitality. An attentive desk personnel as a secretary will help you on improving patient handling.