Private Practice Perspectives

Building an effective community gastroenterology practice


Learn the internal process

Schedules during early months are usually filled with urgent patients. Make yourself available for overflow referrals to other established physicians within the practice and for hospital discharge follow-ups. Reading through the charts of these patients can help you understand the various styles of other doctors and can help you familiarize yourself with referring physicians.

This also will help to clarify the process of how a patient moves through the system – from the time patients call the office to when they check out. This includes navigating through procedures, results reporting, and the recall system. While it will be hard to master all aspects of a practice right away, processes within practices are well established, and it is important for you to have a good understanding of how they function.

Focus on patient care and satisfaction

Learning internal processes also can be useful in increasing patient satisfaction, an important quality outcome indicator. As you’re starting out, keep the following things in mind that can help put your patients at ease and increase satisfaction.

  • Understand how to communicate what a patient should expect when being seen. Being at ease with the process helps garner trust and confidence.
  • Call patients the next day to check on their symptoms.
  • Relay results personally. Make connections with family member(s).
  • Remember that cultural competency is important. Do everything you can to ensure you’re meeting the social, cultural, and linguistic needs of patients in your community.
  • Above all – continue to provide personalized and thorough care. Word of mouth is the best form of referral and is time tested.

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