It Takes Will to Fight Commoditization
Over the past ten years, medical imaging has evolved to a highly competitive specialty in which patients and referrers are failing to see the value of your facility over another. “Commoditization” is the word that has been used ad infinitum.
What may be surprising is that the evolution was not only avoidable, it is still correctable. What is required for the course correction, however, is not a new business or marketing plan, nor a new CEO or any other administrative change. What it takes is the one element that is responsible for the success or failure of
Why Your Staff Needs Empowerment, Now!
Call this empowerment, part two, or, “The Power of Empowerment.” A month ago, my daughter, Kaitlyn, 22, began a career at Disneyland. To start, she is working in the park operating various “attractions,” which you know as rides. A couple of weeks ago, a boy of about seven spilled an entire box of popcorn. Without batting an eye, Kaitlyn walked over to a nearby popcorn stand and requested a replacement box, which she then gave to the boy.
With the park averaging about 35,000 Guests per day, there is probably a lot of spilled popcorn and replacing it could
Benefits of Empowering Staff and Contractors Outweigh Risks
One of the most important but overlooked keys to a quality experience for your referrers and patients is staff empowerment. This is particularly important if you outsource your billing.
Here’s one scenario: Your patient, Mrs. Jones, receives an invoice for a small amount, say under $20. It doesn’t matter who is to blame, what matters is how the situation is handled.
Mrs. calls the number on the invoice and starts a conversation with your billing department that goes something like this:
Billing: Hello, Acme Medical Imaging, this is Jane, how may I
What to Do About Bad Online Patient Reviews
My client was concerned that a couple of negative online reviews would cause prospective patients or referrers to avoid his office. Though there are several websites that offer reviews and grades for physicians, including radiologists, yelp.com and healthgrades.com are the two that seem to be attracting the most attention. On healthgrades.com, my client scored well, so we focused on trying to improve the yelp.com reviews.
The first thing I told him is that trying to improve his yelp status may prove futile as there is significant number of online accusations that yelp.com
Cutting Your Marketing Budget in Tight Times is a Mistake
Important events rarely happen in a vacuum. The “fiscal cliff,” for example, is not a sudden event, but the result of years of economic policies. Countries do not one day decide to go to war. Even Hurricane Sandy was claimed to be the result of man-made global warming, a phenomenon even the Pentagon has acknowledged.
It is often difficult to foresee the eventual upheaval while we are in the middle of the process that will bring it about. The relevant case in point is medical imaging, in which we are at the beginning, middle or end of
Is Radiology Too Good for In-Your-Face Marketing?
Many radiologists have resisted external advertising (print ads, radio, etc.) for years for a number of reasons. Some are doing well enough and don’t feel the need. Some rely so heavily on referrals that external advertising is unnecessary. There is another group, though, that resists external advertising simply because they believe it is beneath them; that only desperate or highly unprofessional radiologists would consider running ads.
AreYouDense is a non-profit organization “dedicated to informing the public about dense breast tissue and its significance for the early detection of breast cancer.” In a move not likely dissuade
News: A Legitimate Way to Market Imaging Services
Last December, ImagingBiz reported WellPoint’s decision to cover low-dose CT scans for lung cancer screening in people age 55 to 74 who have smoked for 30 years or more.
The insurer’s decision was based on new research from the federally-funded National Lung Screening Trial that found screening current and former heavy smokers with low-dose CT scans was tied to a 20% reduction in lung-cancer deaths.
The news was a breakthrough in the typical process of coverage, yet, few imaging facilities chose to take advantage of the development.
One of the few exceptions was Atlantic Medical
Radiology Must Market its Value Before it is too Late
On May 27, the Los Angeles Times ran a front page story about variable pricing available to patients in hospitals. The article was titled, “Many hospitals, doctors offer cash discount for medical bills,” but there was a problem: Out of the many hospital departments available for pricing review, the examples of pricing options for patients cited by the Times (cash vs. insured or Medicare) were almost all in the radiology department.
If medical imaging has been singled out for scrutiny, it is the result of several factors. The one over which we have the most control, however, and
The Best Marketing Practice You’re Probably Doing Wrong
In the realm of best marketing practices in medical imaging, one may assume that the most successful enterprises are doing everything – or almost everything – right. “Successful,” though, is a relative term. Volume is no longer equated with profitability and even those facilities, whether an IDTF or a regional or national chain, with appropriate investments in marketing are finding that the going is getting tougher.
It is a wonder, then, why the simplest of marketing efforts still has not taken root in medical imaging the way it has in almost every other profession or industry.
What if Empowering Patients Increases Imaging Use?
Health policy experts understand that reducing waste and overutilization of health care is critical in making our health care system sustainable. They also understand that to do this ethically, patients must be part of the process.
Informed patients who can work together with their doctors to make smart decisions about their care and avoid costly tests and procedures that will not help them get better is the goal behind efforts like Choosing Wisely. However, as patients are empowered with more information about their health and the medical options open to them, assuming that they will always opt