During the holidays, many healthcare providers face a large uptick in capacity issues, scheduling challenges, and staff shortages – especially when COVID-19 continues to complicate operations for both patients and staff.
Here are some holiday-related ideas to help you retain patients, build staff loyalty, and soften the impact of these seasonal obstacles:
1. Add some flare to seasonal donations to make the experience more memorable for both the giver as well as the recipient, like sending cookies or chocolates alongside the donation certificate or sending a thank you note to the donor. This personal touch will elevate the giving experience while also incentivizing more donations.
2. Offer giving opportunities to patients and staff by placing a box or tree for donations to an identified cause or non-profit. This will add warmth and seasonality to your space as patients wait to be seen, while also presenting an opportunity to give back to the community.
3. Make inclusive accommodations for all holiday traditions, so that patients and staff from all walks of life feel equally appreciated and respected. This will have a long-lasting impact on patient and staff perception of your business and help build trust and loyalty.
4. Proactively communicate information and updates (such as staff shortages, capacity or scheduling constraints, and special holiday hours) whenever, however, and wherever you can. The more transparent and vocal you are about these seasonal experience challenges, the happier and more prepared your patients will be. To do this effectively, you’ll want to leverage multiple communication channels – like social, email, and even snail mail – to get the information out to patients. You can also leverage your website and mobile app to present on-demand information for patients to access at any time.
5. Provide education on medical issues that tend to spike during the holidays, to give your patients the tools they need to remain healthy and help reduce scheduling challenges, capacity constraints, and staff demand. Consider writing blogs or offering seminars on prevention for common holiday ailments. You should also send out emails to patients with information on when, where, and how to receive care, especially if COVID makes a big comeback in the months to come.
The holiday season tends to bring on unique obstacles that can impact customer experiences, operational challenges, and staff morale. However, taking proactive steps to offer more communication, education, and accommodations during the holidays will help you to continue delivering a positive, impactful experience to your patients (and staff!) during this unique and challenging time of year.
Avtex transforms experiences by combining our industry expertise with our cutting edge, end-to-end design, and orchestration services. In other words, we can help your organization deliver a high-value healthcare experience that will keep you off your patients’ Naughty Lists year-round.