7 Ways to Make Sure Your Patients Feel Peaceful in Your Waiting Room
Why does an impending doctor visit have the power to make even the calmest yogi break into a sweat?
Sometimes it’s the fear of the unknown, other times it’s the amount of time that feels wasted, and for others, it’s the cost. No matter how you slice it, most people can agree that going to a doctor’s appointment can ruin your day.
If you’re trying to run a successful clinic, patient satisfaction is the most important factor you need to consider for your business model. Setting up an inviting waiting room can make a wonderful first impression on your patients and keep them coming back for their future medical needs.
Keep reading to learn the top 7 tips for making your waiting room a relaxing and enjoyable space.
1. Set up an Impressive Coffee Bar
Everyone has visited at least one business that has a depressing selection of refreshments. The lonely coffee pot that looks like it hasn’t been used in years as it boils old sludge somehow becomes less appealing than no drinks at all.
To wow your patients, treat them to a fully stocked refreshment bar. Offering a range of coffees, teas, bottled water, and even hot cocoa can help alleviate your patients’ nerves. The best news is there are services that can deliver everything you need so you don’t have to worry about replenishing your products.
Although the patients will appreciate a refreshment bar, your staff can benefit, too. Happy employees provide better service for your patients.
If you want to go above and beyond, you could even serve pastries or other treats that can comfort your visitors. Muffins, granola bars, and fruits could make your patients excited to spend their time in the waiting room.
2. Decorate to Create an Inviting Space
If you want your patients to relax while they sip on their hot beverages, they need to have comfortable seating. Investing in plushy couches and individual armchairs can allow your patients to sit back and forget all their worries.
Creating a warm environment goes beyond your seating arrangement though. When people think of a hospital waiting room, they imagine everything is blindingly white. White walls, white chairs, and white tables can make anyone go mad.
Vibrant paintings, flower arrangements, and other colorful decors can breathe new life into your waiting room. Be careful not to make the room too busy with clashing colors and patterns, and try to stick to one theme.
Space is another factor to consider in your design. Giving each guest plenty of room to breathe can alleviate anxiety. If you try to fit too many people in one room, there will be a lot of uncomfortable eye contact and touching.
3. Keep People Connected Online
One of the most important waiting room solutions is providing fast, reliable internet for your patients.
Allowing your patients to stay connected online can let them do things they enjoy at home. Whether they chat with friends, play games, or scroll through social media, phones can help comfort your patients during their wait.
Make sure your WiFi is open to the public so your guests can connect with ease. If you have to secure your network, be sure to post plenty of notes around the room to inform guests of the password. Otherwise, most people will feel too shy to ask a staff member.
Providing ample charging spaces with an array of different device chargers shows your visitors that your business truly cares about their happiness.
4. Appoint Friendly Front Staff
Hiring a greater or a friendly receptionist can remove some of the fear of the unknown when patients visit the doctor’s office. If your staff can help direct your patients to check in, get seated, and answer any other questions they may have, your guests will feel welcome and calm.
Interacting with guests can improve waiting times and boost the efficiency of your office. The less time patients have to wait, the better. If you happen to have a busy day, friendly staff can soothe any impatient guests.
5. Make Sure Your Waiting Room Provides Estimated Wait Times
If you run a big clinic that treats a high volume of people each day, mounting a television on the wall that updates patients on their current waiting time is a must. When patients can see the light at the end of the tunnel, they won’t feel so agitated about their visit.
Waiting times can also give your guests more freedom to roam. If each person knows how much time they have before their appointment, they can go to the bathroom or walk outside to enjoy some fresh air without worrying about missing their visit.
6. Entertain Your Guests
On top of fast WiFi, your waiting room should offer other sources of entertainment for those who don’t have their phone on them. If you have the budget for it, waiting room iPads loaded with fun games and dozens of magazines can add a lot of cheer to the waiting room.
If not, be sure to lay out an array of magazines that can cater to different tastes. Televisions that play different media allow your guests to sit by whichever screen is most entertaining to them.
If your clinic treats lots of children, be sure to provide quiet games for them to enjoy. Puzzles, children’s magazines, and coloring books are all activities that can keep your little guests occupied. When children are bored, they might cry or make loud noises that disturb other guests.
7. Play Atmospheric Music
Music plays a big role in our mood. Curating an appropriate playlist can calm your patients and even make them happy. If the music is too extreme, then your guests can feel on edge, but if the music is too soft, they’ll feel bored.
Acoustic covers of popular songs are smooth enough to be calming, and the familiar lyrics will keep people interested. Be sure to find the sweet spot for the volume so all your guests can hear it, but they can easily tune it out if they want to focus their attention on something else.
Want to Learn More?
Now that you know how to make your waiting room a welcoming environment, you can improve your business and put more patients at ease.
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