Some patients are just impatient and some patients are grumpy, either way, you have to know how to deal with rude patients. Here are five easy steps that you can implement with your staff today.
1. Limit communication by using an appointment reminder program
Sometimes less is more. This is especially true with patients who don’t have a friendly personality or are not interested in consistent communication. An automatic appointment reminder will give your patient all the information they need without requiring them to interact with your staff. And with programs like appointmentreminders.com, you can easily implement automatic reminders for a very low cost.
2. Create a compassion strategy
This tactic might sound a little strange but it has the potential to work wonders for your practice. You see patients at their worst – when they are sick, exhausted, and vulnerable. No one is acting their best in that state. You and your staff can create a compassion strategy to help ease their discomfort from the moment they walk through your door. Small acts of kindness, such as offering hot tea or water while they wait, can make a huge difference in their interaction. Create a simple strategy that your entire staff can implement.
3. Pay attention
Often times, a situation can be prevented before it unfolds. If your staff is paying attention and being observant they may have an opportunity to prevent a patient from becoming irritable or impatient. By simply addressing your patient’s issue ahead of time, your staff can improve patient care.
4. Stay calm
When all else fails – stay calm! By getting upset you escalate the situation and give your patient reason to become even more impatient. You will fuel your patient’s anger by adding oil to the fire. So above all else, remain calm and continue to treat your patient with consideration and respect. Sometimes this is easier said than done.
5. As a last resort, discharge your patient from the practice
I think the last thing you want to do is lose a patient, but sometimes it can’t be avoided. When a patient refuses to cooperate, continues to disrespect your regulations, or insists on abusing your staff; the best thing you can do is dismiss them.