The Patient Comeback: Proven Tactics for Bringing Back Patients Who’ve Drifted Away

November 26th 2023

2 minutes read

The Patient Comeback: Proven Tactics for Bringing Back Patients Who’ve Drifted Away
Written by LiveLink
November 26th 2023
Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Patient Comeback: Proven Tactics for Bringing Back Patients Who’ve Drifted Away

It’s not unusual for patients to drift away whether it’s due to a lapse in communication, dissatisfaction with services, or personal reasons. The challenge then is how to bring these patients back. Or at least find out why they left in the first place as that data is priceless.

Let’s look at the main reasons why patients may disappear.

  • Breakdown in communication
  • Not receiving the service that they expected
  • Didn’t gel with the practioner – we can’t like everyone
  • Price
  • Availability

Most of the reasons for a patient disappearing will be down to a breakdown in communication. The assumption could be it’s down to price, but it rarely is. By having a strong communication strategy many of the mysteries of why the patient didn’t return will be solved. As you will know!

When your communication is spot-on your patient will be comfortable sharing their anxieties and plaudits with you. And this is valuable information that you can use to tweak your service and approach. Even if the message is unpalatable, it’s important that it’s heard.

Perhaps the patient didn’t gel with the practitioner. It happens. Again, this will come down to communication because when you know this, you can do something about it. If there are other practitioners in your clinic, introduce the patient to a different practitioner.

Patients rarely leave on price. They are more likely to use price as an excuse if they are unhappy with some other aspect of the service.

Availability could be a reason for the patient disappearing. Again, communication is the key here once again. Manage future appointments before they leave the clinic and this will avoid the risk of appointments becoming unavailable.

Having consistent feedback will enable you to make improvements to your delivery. But if your communication is poor, how will you know whether you’re delivering the service your patients expect and deserve.

How can you get your patients back?

This will take a systematic approach of a combination of emails, texts and calls (conversations).

It’s important to find out why they left in the first place and then to implement a plan to encourage them to return.

You could consider special offers of a new service that they may not be aware of. Introduction to a new practitioner in the clinic. Offers for a series of appointments. Educational resources that empower patients with knowledge to manage their own symptoms.

It’s vital that there’s a patient-centric culture. When a patient genuinely feels they are being heard they are more likely to re-engage and build trust.

Re-engaging with lapsed patients will only help a clinic improve. You may not always hear what you would like to hear, but this will help you improve your systems, processes and practices. Living in an echo-chamber of praise is great, but it isn’t the whole picture. Otherwise there wouldn’t be any lapsed patients on the list.

If you want help getting your lapsed patients back, take a look here to see how we can help you.

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