From the 4 P’s to the 4 A’s

Like it or not, healthcare today is a business.  And what many physicians once resisted – marketing and communicating to meet the needs of their patients/customers – is now an essential part of your everyday business.  Any basic business marketing book or course will talk about the “four P’s” – product, price, place and promotion. And these elements are still the building blocks of any successful enterprise. However, what today’s patients or “pro-sumers” believe they want, deserve and expect has really become the driving force in healthcare purchasing decisions. Service has become an increasingly important part of the “product” physicians provide, and healthcare has become will become an even more competitive marketplace. You can have stellar credentials and provide the highest level of care available, but if you can’t keep your patients happy, many will simply leave and find someone who will.  As a result, the true key to any physician’s survival and success in 2010 and beyond is what I call the “four A’s:”

  • Access
  • Availability
  • Accountability
  • Accommodation

Obviously, these are interrelated.  There are times when access and availability seem to be the same, and there are times when accommodation is really about availability and access.  Are you earning straight A’s?