Tips to Help Get Patients Back to the Clinic After COVID 19

It’s no secret that after the Covid 19 pandemic struck, more people feared healthcare facilities. The fright of contracting the virus was more potent than their need for medical care. 

According to MarketWatch, there has been an 18% decrease in health care spending since 2020. 

Now that we’re out of quarantine, it’s time to get patients back to clinics and hospitals. However, habits are in place, and it’s up to your facility to help patients unlearn them. 

In this article, we’ll discuss ways to outreach to your patients and to your community to bring them back into the clinic and retain them for years to come.

3 Ways to Bring Back Patients to Your Clinic

 

The WHO advised patients to steer clear of medical facilities for two years to avoid getting covid 19. The seclusion led to many associating the facilities with fear and sometimes even death. 
Post-pandemic, patients are still not visiting medical facilities at the same raste as before. This led to many practices shutting down due to bankruptcy. Those that survived must reinstate their community’s and patient’s confidence in your clinic. 

Here are three ways to do so:
 

1. Plan for the Win-back Campaign

 

Win-back campaigns don’t just work for eCommerce businesses. They’re for any industry that seeks to recover long-lost customers, in this case, your patients.

As you plan your win-back campaign, our experts at Target Continuum recommend the following:

• Plan your demographic

  • Get your patients’ information from your database. 
  • Perform an analysis on your community demographics.
• Segment this list and identify your prime demographic. It would be awkward for frequent patients to receive a “We miss you” email or for someone living in Hawaii to see your Texas based community clinic message online.
 
• Determine the frequency of your outreach.
  • How many touchpoints will it take to convince your community and past patients to step back in to the clinic? 
  • Will your team send emails weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly?

• Along with your marketing budget, review your grant funding opportunities and assess which allowable uses of funds enable you to perform paid outreach for specific causes. This will help you maximize your outreach budget and make the biggest impact for your clinic.

2. Organize Your Campaign Message

 

Here are a few tips that will guide you as you organize your patients’ win-back campaign message.

 

A Gentle Reminder Goes a Long Way

Be sure that your entire community is seeing that you are open for safe, high quality, and affordable healthcare services. Sometimes all it takes is a gentle reminder saying “Hey, We are here for you” for a patient to schedule an appointment.

Communicate “The Why”

 

Be sure to explain the reasons why you are trying to connect with these individuals, sometimes its not enough to simply state that your clinic is around the corner, rather emphasize the benefit to the patient. You know your mission and you know that affordable healthcare services can help save lives, but shockingly not everyone thinks that way. Remind your patients of the importance of routine healthcare visits and the impact that can have on the health of themselves and their family.

Include Safety Measures:

Face masks for the elderly. 

Although most states no longer have a mask mandate, Covid 19 isn’t entirely gone. Older adults are still at a high risk of contracting the virus as their immunities are weak. 

By encouraging them to continue using the mask, you’ll help them overcome the fear, and they’ll have the confidence to visit your clinic.

Provision of sanitizers at the entrance.

Let your patients know that you’re still aligning with the WHO recommendations of safety precautions. The measures include sanitizers spread out across the building and at the entrance.

 

3. Spread the Word

It’s time to launch the campaign and reach out to your patients. Instead of relying on a single outstream, the more channels you use, the higher the number of patients you’ll reach. 

Some of the ways to spread the word are:

Regularly Publishing Blog Posts.

Include pieces that warn against the dangers of delaying medical care and treatment. Add a call to action at the end of each post, encouraging the patients to visit your office.

The articles should also include the stated safety precautions above.

Outreach Online with Paid Digital Ads

Display advertising is an excellent way of reaching both your patients and potential ones and most of the time this is an allowable use of funds for most grants. These ads allow you to outreach to the masses much more efficiently.

Utilizing Online Health Assessments

It’s no secret that everyone loves a good online quiz. Well, what if these quizzes doubled as health assessments? This allows clinics to collect important health info and et patients to schedule appointments right online in a HIPAA friendly fashion. Target Continuum offers solutions for this on your website if you need assistance.

Do You Offer Incentives? 

 

Everyone loves a good discount, and they are a great way of luring long-lost patients back to your fold. Make the discount visible by including it in the email subject line as you set up your message. 

A great way to do this is to combine it with cause marketing, killing two birds with one stone. 

Let’s take this example: May is mental health awareness month, and you can offer 20% off psychiatric services for long-lost patients. 

What Next? How to Build Loyalty and Get Patients to Stay

The campaign was successful, and you got your patients back. The million-dollar question goes, how do you get them to stay? 

In the next section, we’ll discuss measures that strengthen patients’ loyalty and how to implement them. 

Personalized Messaging 

Who doesn’t want to feel special? Your patients want to know that you care for them beyond the your walls. A great way of showing that is by personalizing messages. 

As you send out email reminders for future appointments, include their names. 

Example: “Hey John, don’t forget your appointment at 4 p.m; today” or “John, we wanted to check in after your last appointment and schedule your follow up appointment to ensure you were feeling well. You can schedule right here using this link, Give us a call directly if you need any further assistance” 

  • There are many technology partners you can work with to get this accomplished.
  • These can be entirely automated so you don’t impact your staff’s workload. 

Engage With Them on Social Media

 
Gone are the days when customers only cared about the product or service. Your patients need you to engage with them. By having an active profile and letting them know of new news, they’ll view you as a credible source. The more consistent you are, the stronger your brand voice and the more memorable you’ll be to your patients.
 

Ask for Reviews 

As you seek to bring back former patients, also set your eyes on acquiring new ones.

According to the National Library of Medicine, patient reviews are essential to half of all Americans when choosing a doctor.

Most patients wouldn’t leave reviews unless they had a negative experience. That’s why you need to give them the extra nudge.

The best method to use is automated reviews. Through a computer, they’ll rate the experience from 1-to 10. Immediately, the review will reflect on your website.

Final Thoughts

 

Working with over 600 healthcare sites nationwide we know the importance of being prepared so as the switch from virtual care back to physical continues, Target Continuum makes sure that you’re ready for what’s next. If you need assistance with your post covid outreach strategy, grant funding, or patient engagement tactics get in touch with one of our experts today. 

 

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