It is very easy to get into a state of overwhelm and fear and not be able to see beyond the present catastrophe in creation. We are great believers in looking for the positive in any situation and what we can do rather than what we can’t do!
Whilst this time of uncertainty poses a real worry for the future of your practice, try and clear your head and be pro-active. Here are a few suggestions:
Safety and Hygiene:
If you are continuing to see patients, remind patients of the robust safety and hygiene measures you have always taken and what you will be doing in addition to those measures to make it safe for them to have treatment with you whether at your clinic or in their homes.
Have clear communication about the categories of patients who can still attend and those who definitely should not come to the clinic. Have a screening process at the time of taking bookings and then again prior to their entry into the practice.
Cancellation and rebooking procedure:
It is inevitable that your cancellation rate is going to increase at this time. Make sure you have a good system in place to follow up with patients who have cancelled or not attended. Your patients had appointments in your diary because they needed your help.
Show your patients that you care about them by following up to either get them rebooked for an appropriate time or to offer them alternative support.
Now is also not the time to suddenly not follow up on those who you believe should have had appointments prior to the coronavirus crisis. Get in touch with those patients too to let them know how they can continue with their recommended care.
Most of our clients are manual therapists so the thought of giving and potentially charging for advice over the phone or over a video call may feel uncomfortable. It’s time to do two things:
- Put yourself in your patients’ shoes – they may be in pain and in this time of uncertainty they will be super grateful for any advice you can give them
- Value yourself and what you have to offer – even though you offer hands-on treatment you offer a lot more than just that – think about the last month’s worth of appointments…how much advice and support did you give in addition to the hands-on part of the treatment?
Some of you will have had to close your clinic or you might be offering a limited service, freeing up a substantial amount of time.
Let’s see this as the silver-lining! Being clinicians, your main focus will usually be on treating patients and we know that your project list most likely just gets bigger and bigger.
What are the things you’ve been meaning to do to develop your practice that you’ve just not got around to?
Some ideas to focus on:
- Online CPD
- Putting a marketing plan in place for when the crisis passes
- Creating written and video content
- Reviewing your procedures in your practice and recording them if they are just in your head
- Reviewing your job descriptions and key performance indicators for your team
- Getting your accounts up to date
- Research the products or services you have been meaning to look into
Time for you:
We also know that running a practice often means you get little time to spend with your loved ones. Use this time to reconnect, dig out those favourite board games (we have just learnt to play dominoes properly having just visited Puerto Rico where it’s a national favourite!)
Do something for you – perhaps you have always wanted to learn a new language (I’m learning / brushing up on basic French using an app called Duolingo) or like our client John has decided to do practice a lot more on his guitar.
Let’s look back on this time we have been given and be able to say we made the most of it!
We hope that our thoughts have helped you in some small way and most importantly, we hope that you are all well and keeping safe.