Let’s face it, in most medical practices the patient spends most of their time in your waiting room. It is often also their first in-person impression of your office, and while the entire clinic doesn’t necessarily have to look like it came out of an interior design catalog, it is important that it be esthetically pleasing, comfortable, and clean.
I am not an interior designer, nor do I claim to be. We do occasionally get to pick out some furnishing for our clients and believe me I know how to hunt down a deal, and it’s a lot of fun. Here are some of our go-to places, things, and ideas to spruce up your waiting area and make it more appealing to your patients:
1. Head over to your local Ikea or ikea.com. They have myriad products that you can purchase for very little money. You could add a rug (in a low traffic area or under waiting room chairs), durable rug/toys for a children’s corner, magazine racks, end tables/coffee tables and lamps for less than $500. If you chose to spend a little more, and update waiting room or exam room chairs, they do have a very durable and stylish line of commercial grade furniture for your office. (If you don’t live near an Ikea, I would avoid shopping online, as shipping is outrageous.)
2. If online shopping is more your style, try Overstock.com. Overstock also features stylish furnishings and accessories for a large percentage off the retail price. For under $500 you could easily update your furnishings. Spending a little more can get you quality furniture such as chairs, couches, filing, shelving, etc. They even have a commercial supplies area. The best part? Shipping is always $2.
We recently furnished our new office and warehouse distribution center with a little help from both places.
3. Walls looking a little bare? You can go either way or both ways with this, you can use a service like Corporate Art Designs (CAD) to spruce up your artwork. Choose packages for as many or as few pieces as you like, CAD will develop a portfolio based on your tastes; they can even do branded pieces for you. Once you have selected your pieces, CAD will come and install them. Another option is to have local artists feature their artwork on rotation in your clinic. This option is free, helps artists sell and promote their work, and keeps the view changing and interesting. The best of both worlds would be a combination of professionally chosen art and local artists adorning your clinic walls.
Make sure your first in-person impression is the best. Update your look, get rid of the old faux plants, outdated lamps, and worn out toys. Make your space comfortable, make it rise up, and great for your patients.