The healthcare sector is a business; like any business, your customers matter. Providing care goes beyond treating wounds, but you also have to ensure the patient who comes to you feels happy and satisfied with how you provide services.
Radiology departments are an active part of the hospital. At a time, numerous patients are booking appointments to get their X-rays, MRI scans, and CT scans. This can often lead to a saturation in the system resulting in long waiting lists and angry patients.
If you cannot accommodate your patients immediately, expect them to turn to another facility. This reflects poorly on any hospital.
So to ensure that your patients get well looked after, here’s what you need to do to provide better customer service in your radiology department:
Ways To Improve Customer Service In Your Radiology Department
Customer service is important to every business. If you want your patients to return, you must provide them with good customer service. This post will share six ways to improve customer service in your radiology department.
Ensure patients are safe
Radiology equipment gets calibrated a certain way. These machines also carry small doses of radiation that are not harmful in trace amounts. But when preparing a patient to go into a machine, you must ensure they are safe.
Start by guiding the patient on what they need to know before they go into or behind any device. If you need to use other equipment along with the machine, ensure it’s okay to do so. For instance, MRI uses magnetism to function, but the device can malfunction if another highly magnetic apparatus gets brought near it. The strong magnetic field of the MRI scanner will pull on these magnetic machines. This can change the device’s magnetic fields and radiofrequency, leading to severe burns and tissue damage in the patient.
So before you use more medical equipment, always use a magnetism measurement and check if the apparatus is safe to be near an MRI machine. Likewise, ensure your patients are not wearing metallic jewelry that may cling to the machine’s surface.
The equipment also needs regular maintenance; if you see cracks, damage, or broken screens, don’t use the device unless you get a replacement.
Use automated booking systems
Booking appointments can be a hassle. It makes for a bad overall experience when customers have to wait longer than usual. If your department has been booked for the month, inform your patients by messaging them on their hospital-provided numbers or by posting it online.
But if there is space and you struggle to assign a machine to a patient, use appointment scheduling software like Sagenda. This cloud-based system books according to the available area and a slot. So instead of manually jotting down patients, the software will distribute clients, ensuring that there is not much waiting time between the dates.
Consumers need a compassionate and welcoming staff. Your cold and detached talking will only discourage them from returning for further lab scans.
You must go out of your way to ensure a patient feels comfortable. Assure them about the procedure’s safety, answer all their questions and connect them to resources you believe will facilitate their learning. When you’re emailing them with results, thank the patient for using your department and provide details on medical helplines they can call to learn more about their health.
Be proactive online
In this era of digitalization, you should try posting more information online. Your customers may have questions about the machines, insurance deductions, or how the scanning test goes. Therefore, you must answer all these queries and provide helpful links that can ease their worry. Some patients feel dizzy or anxious in tight spaces. You can provide information on what they can do to cope with the necessary appointment.
Other details include preparing for an appointment, what medicines to take, possible side effects if the machine radiates hate, and the test duration. You can also provide telehealth links to connect them to doctors and nurse practitioners who can explain the lab results in a more informed manner. If you feel the patient’s health is critical according to the scans, reach out to them on their portal and encourage them to book an appointment with their doctor.
Train your staff
You need all hands on deck while running a radiology apartment. You need all your team members to uphold a standard of care that makes patients prefer your services over others. Your training needs to extend to the receptionist by informing them about handling phones, putting calls on hold, and how to guide the patient on signing up for a scan. If an emergency or a critical care patient needs quick imaging, be sure you clear the path, wheel the patient to the nearest relevant machine, and delegate a team member to handle the case.
Additionally, you have to walk your team through machine care and handling. Don’t let staff haphazardly turn a machine on or off. Show your staff the control panels and the sequence of buttons, and prevent them from impatiently handling equipment such as caring for an X-ray machine. Warn them on hazards that interfere with scanning and the type of garment they should wear while they work on patients. All your staff must know first-aid in case of a mishap.
Be open to suggestions
Your patients will always have something to say about your services, so listen to them. These can help you improve the quality of care and streamline scanning according to what your patients want to see. Maybe they want you to handle phone calls faster, want more options in telehealth, or want more upgraded machines. So no matter the suggestion, make sure you take it.
Radiology in healthcare deals with imaging for diagnosing internal injuries. Since you’re a testing department and not a medical treatment facility, there are specific measures you need to mind while doing your job. The first is ensuring patient safety. These machines can get dangerous if you mishandle them or are hazardous equipment. An automated booking system will help you schedule patients at regular intervals. You should try and be more proactive about posting online and be welcoming to every patient that walks in. Don’t forget your team is also part of this equation and has to be courteous and kind to all the patients walking in.Try adopting these improvements immediately when listening to what your patients say.