The Patient Experience

As a healthcare provider, it is definitely interesting to be on the other side of the aisle. Over the last year, I have had the opportunity to experience different medical offices, as a patient, and not much has changed in the overall experience of a doctor’s visit, since I was a kid. You check in, fill out paperwork, wait in a waiting room, get called back by an assistant and the doctor comes in and sees you for 5-10 minutes. As a doctor and someone who appreciates great service, I felt like I, and other patients, was missing something in each of those visits.  The main element was more time with my doctor and the feeling that I looked forward to coming back. In our “on the go” world, we are so used to having everything quick and easy, but what are we sacrificing when it comes to our healthcare experience?  As an optometrist, my main focus is the eye health of my patients. However, there is more to the patient than just their eyes. They are unique individuals, and I feel like their experience should be just as special and not as “routine.” I get more attention and comfort going to get my hair stylist than I do at a doctor’s office. The salon offers me my favorite drink as soon as I check in, and I get a scalp and neck massage with a warm towel over my face. My stylist remembers me and asks me how things are going with everything in my life. I can’t remember the last time I got that kind of service at a doctor’s office. It got me thinking that maybe more people would actually go to the doctor, if it was a more enjoyable visit. When the doors to Focus open this winter, I want patients not to feel like “patients.” I want them to feel like a friend and client, and our main purpose would be to serve their needs and give them that worthwhile experience. As the landscape of healthcare changes, I need to remember to keep my ‘focus’ on each individual. I hope that more and more providers start thinking outside of the box!

Experiencing a massage around your eyes before having your vision exam would allow you to relax and let the stress of a long day melt away!  

Make your appointment to see Dr. Patel!