With the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re all living in a very different world than we did just a week ago. This creates huge challenges, sacrifices and fears for everyone, but it also provides opportunities to demonstrate true leadership. At Medical Marketing Inc., we’ve been working closely with a number of our clients on just this. Here are a few of the ways you can lead and make a difference during this crisis:
- Protect. Look out for your physicians, staff and patients. They are your extended family. Employ empathy and look at this crisis through each of their lenses. Take all of the possible steps you can to keep them as safe as possible. Make sure they know and feel that they are your top priority. Provide them with additional resources as you are able and keep an open dialogue for them to share specific questions and concerns. Come up with strategies to minimize their risk. Some of our clients have set new policies including patients can only bring one caregiver with them, screening patients prior to visits, scheduling and accommodating so patients aren’t sitting together in waiting rooms.
- Communicate. This pandemic situation is changing rapidly — by the hour in some cases. Keep all of your stakeholders informed on a regular basis of the steps you are taking and do so in multiple ways — phone calls, texts, emails, web site, social media, flyers, etc. Don’t overwhelm, but information is power and helps people to feel more in control of the situation. Keep your communication clear and as concise as possible. And always be sure to inform your physicians and staff first. They are your front line in this battle.
- Convene. Bring people together — virtually of course. We’re already “socially distancing” as much as possible. Find creative ways to create and maintain connections. Convene a conference call or teleconference to network with referral sources or other medical practices in your speciality throughout the state or country. Share best practices and learn from each other. We’re all in this together.
- Share and Collaborate. Similar to #3, find ways to share information and resources as appropriate. Work together with others on new ideas to address common challenges. Share helpful news and tips provided by other trusted organizations. This positions your practice as an involved leader and valuable resource.
- Innovate. While some medical practices were already exploring new uses of technology, COVID-19 is causing some to move quicker into areas like telemedicine and online registration. We’ve all heard the old proverb, “necessity is the mother of invention.” Explore how can you minimize physical contact and risk without losing a “personal touch” and connection. Involve your team in brainstorming new ideas and solutions. Provide detailed instructions and help patients, especially older ones, to navigate this scary new world.
Let us know if you have other ideas to share or need assistance with communication during this crisis. Stay safe and well!