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by Jenn Riggle
With patient satisfaction now tied to reimbursement, hospitals are focusing on the little things that improve people's hospital stay. They're hiring consultants from Disney and Ritz-Carlton to teach them how to improve patient experience, address complaints and add a compassionate touch to serious medical care.
While these are important, they are only part of the equation. In today's multitasking world, people are trying to find ways to squeeze exercise and doctor's appointments into their already busy schedules. And with the rise of urgent care centers and clinics, people have more choices than ever about where they go to receive care.
That's why hospitals must remember one of the important tenets of customer service: Know your customer and provide services that meet their needs.
As I look back at all that was written and shared during this past year on patient experience, not only in my previous blog posts, but in the words shared by so many--patient experience leaders, caregivers, hospital administrators, physicians, patients and family members--I was moved to find compelling, powerful and even emotional themes.
As readers, you were drawn to the stories shared about the experiences people had and it brought home an important point. As much as we in healthcare strive to provide the best patient and family experience, enact effective strategies and tactics, and implement the required policies, we must remember we are patients and family members ourselves.
In the talks I share and in visits to healthcare organizations, I witness what I believe rests at the core of the healthcare experience--we are human beings taking care of human beings.
by Jenn Riggle
Social media advertising may seem like selling out to hospital marketers.
Although we may not like to admit it, we tend to be social media purists. Blame it on our Pilgrim ancestors and their puritanical ways, but marketers often believe if they don't organically earn social media followers and drive engagement, it's not genuine. Oh, we may be comfortable purchasing some ads on Facebook, but developing a social media advertising strategy seems like cheating.
That's why it's important for hospitals to put aside their misgivings and think seriously about how they're promoting their content. Social media advertising might drive people to your Facebook page, video or website, but you need great content to keep them coming back.
by Jenn Riggle
Last month, Ed Bennett announced that the Mayo Clinic Center for Social Media will take over and maintain the Hospital Social Network List he created in 2009.
In his final post, Bennett said the environment for healthcare social media is more hospitable than it was three years ago and that hospital executives now understand social media is an essential tool for communication among and between providers, patients and caregivers.
While I agree that the number of hospitals engaging in social media has increased, hospitals shouldn't rest on their laurels because they still have a long way to go to improve community engagement.
Keith Korneluk developed an infographic with the International Council for Quality Care that looks at how the top 100 hospitals use social media. What I found interesting was the average community engagement levels for these hospitals wasn't as high as I expected.
by Jenn Riggle
More than 1,200 hospitals have a social media presence, according to Ed Bennett, who keeps an ongoing list of hospitals engaging in social media. And while some hospitals, such as Mayo Clinic and Boston Children's Hospital, have used social media to build their brand and create thought leadership, nearly 3,800 of the nation's community hospitals still haven't staked their claim in social media. Why?
Some may be afraid of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) violations, while others may not have the dedicated staff needed to "feed the beast" and regularly post meaningful content on Facebook and Twitter.
But take heart. There are some simple social media strategies hospitals can implement that won't raise your blood pressure.
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