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Nutter Corp. to install utilities at Vancouver waterfront

Nutter Corp. to install utilities at Vancouver waterfront

Nutter Corporation has been authorized by the Port of Vancouver to make stormwat...

Northwest Grain Handlers, ILWU reach tentative agreement

Northwest Grain Handlers, ILWU reach tentative agreement

A two-year long dispute and eventual work stoppage over workplace rules between ...

Banfield CEO details move to Vancouver

Banfield CEO details move to Vancouver

Tony Ueber, president and CEO of Banfield Pet Hospital, a subsidiary of Mars, In...

CenturyLink strengthens commitment to Clark County with gigabit service

CenturyLink strengthens commitment to Clark County with gigabit service

CenturyLink announced this week that broadband speeds up to 1 gigabit per second...

Marketing & the human element

Marketing & the human element

The world of marketing is abuzz with talk of metrics. A typical campaign might i...

Fort Vancouver National Trust announces “Dancing with the Local Stars” participants

Fort Vancouver National Trust announces “Dancing with the Local Stars” participants

The Fort Vancouver National Trust has unveiled the nine local community leaders ...

Design & Construction

Tracking Vancouver’s new waterfront park

Tracking Vancouver’s new waterfront park

The redevelopment of the old Boise-Cascade Mill site in downtown Vancouver has long been a top priority for city leaders. And while the mixed-use project has the potential to be a game-changer for the city, the key to its success may very well lie at the water’s edge.

The 32-acre project will include one million square feet of office space and 250,000 square feet of retail space, including propos...

Health Care & Hospitals

Care providers ‘all in’ on infrastructure improvements

Care providers ‘all in’ on infrastructure improvements

Across Southwest Washington, healthcare providers are making significant capital investments in infrastructure, in response to an increased number of patients (due the Affordable Care Act) and growing pressure for interoperability and integration among healthcare providers.

According to Ryan Ball, Peacehealth’s chief information officer, Peacehealth is in the midst of the second-largest capital i...

News Briefs

Group of nonprofits receives $1.1 million YouthBuild Grant

A group of nonprofit organizations has banded together and received a $1.1 million YouthBuild Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor. The grant will be used to support up to 60 at-risk Clark County youth with academic and construction skills training.

Spotlight

Spoiled Spa & Salon: ‘Sharing’ in success

Spoiled Spa & Salon: ‘Sharing’ in success

“Life can be stressful enough as a 25-year-old mother of a 17-month-old and expecting a second child – imagine starting a new business at the same time. That’s exactly what April did almost three-and-a-half years ago when she opened the doors to Spoiled Spa and Salon,” says Diane McWithey, executive director of Share, a Vancouver-based nonprofit.

April Truong is indeed a success story. Armed with...

Through your patients’ eyes

If you run an office – whether it’s a medical practice or not – taking a regular look at how customers access your services can be a valuable lesson. A “mystery shopper” may help identify obstacles or give advice for improvements.

If you run an office – whether it’s a medical practice or not – taking a regular look at how customers access your services can be a valuable lesson. A “mystery shopper” may help identify obstacles or give advice for improvements.

A recent seminar by consultant and author Kris Baird gave specific examples (and showed the crazy photos of real-life instances) of what not to do in terms of customer service. She suggested medical practices examine themselves in seven areas:

The one that got away

Does your practice consider the experience before someone arrives for the first time? Are your phone system and website up to date and easy to navigate? Should the website give office hours so a potential caller knows when to best contact you?

Most of us don’t realize how many customers leave before they even enter our systems.

You never get a second chance

Does your physical environment reflect your level of quality? Baird presented an insightful picture that showed the spaces reserved for disabled people outside an office were further down the sidewalk than the spots reserved for doctors.

We’re glad you’re here

If the first message that greets customers is a list of rules and regulations, they may not feel welcomed. Creating a welcoming reception isn’t expensive – it simply takes the right folks who understand eye contact.

He said what?

In often anxious situations like medical settings, the friendly banter of staff may need to be reserved for the break room.

Worth a thousand words

If everything speaks, what messages do your customers get by seeing cluttered bulletin boards or overflowing garbage bins? Little things can be perceived as lack of quality.

Doctors, PAs, technicians, referral coordinators and more…

With the complexity of medical offices, most of us who visit them don’t know the roles anymore. Are all these folks on the same page in terms of instilling confidence in your processes?

Out the door

What is the last thing a customer hears, sees or feels at the end of the encounter? Key words at key times can make a lasting impression.

Looking at ourselves isn’t easy. Mystery shopping is not intended to judge clinical competency but rather how patients feel about the encounter. Wouldn’t it be ideal if everything about the customer encounter instilled trust that we are delivering on the promise of safe, high-quality health care?

 

Chad Dillard leads marketing and communications efforts for Southwest Washington Health System. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 360-514-7263.

Opinion

Focus Column

Healthcare changes increase appeal of company wellness

Healthcare changes increase appeal of company wellness

Whether they are referred to as “Wellness Programs,” “Lifestyle Management Programs” or “Health Coverage Premium Incenti...

Hearing loss and its impact on income and quality of life

Hearing loss and its impact on income and quality of life

Hearing – one of our most important senses for communication and interaction with other human beings (recall the Helen K...

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