Best of 2010: Top Patient Relations Stories of the Year

December 27, 2010

Happy patients make for a happy practice, but getting everybody on the same page can be challenging. From basic customer service to avoiding HIPAA violations, patient interaction and relations are a big part of your everyday work. Here are our top 10 patient relations stories for 2010.

Happy patients make for a happy practice, but getting everybody on the same page can be challenging. From basic customer service to avoiding HIPAA violations, patient interaction and relations are a big part of your everyday work.

Here are our most popular 10 stories on patient relations as determined by you – the readers:

10. Simple Steps to Boost Positive Patient VisitsWhen it comes to creating happier patients, skip the perks in the waiting room and instead focus on boosting the morale of your staff. Here’s how.

9. Billing for Family MeetingsOne of the thorniest coding questions is: Can a physician bill for family meetings when the patient is not present? If so, who gets the bill - the insurance company, family member, or patient? Unfortunately, the AMA’s Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) and Medicare each answer this question differently.

8. Patient Records Legal PrimerHere’s what you need to know about keeping, transferring, and destroying patient records.

7. Patient PortalsWhat can a patient portal do for your practice? Can it reduce incoming phone calls? Can it help generate revenue? It can do both of these, and more. An interactive portal can provide your patients with all of the following self-service capabilities:

6. Battling Office GossipLoose lips sink ships …and practices. Here's how to stop indiscriminate tongue-wagging.

5. ‘My Most Frustrating Patient’ From our Physician Writer Search: Learning that doing the right thing doesn’t always please everyone.

4. The Know-It-All Patient How to deal with a patient who crosses from engaged to over-prepared.

3. Is It Ever OK to Lie to Patients?Honesty may be the best policy. But is complete truthfulness the compassionate course in every case? Here's what you need to know about the legal, ethical, and professional issues around withholding information from patients.

2. How to Deal with Grouchy PatientsNot every patient is all smiles when they arrive in your office. Probably most patients who visit your practice are pleasant enough, despite feeling unwell, but every once in awhile you are bound to deal with a patient who is just plain grouchy. It’s not fun and you aren’t likely to jump for joy, but there are certainly ways you can ease an unpleasant situation and make the most of the patient encounter.

1. 7 Ways to Make Your Patients Smile The good news is that you don’t have to don a clown suit to make staff smile. Mostly it comes down to respecting your patients as people with names and schedules and worries. Here are seven small but mighty ways you can make your patients happy they chose your practice.