With personal health care, when patient suffering is validated and seen as an acceptable illness, they realize it is one that can be handled
THIS GENERATION CRAVES INDIVIDUAL CARE, WHICH CHIROPRACTORS CAN PROVIDE. With personal health care, what does the average 21st century American expect from their health care provider?
- To be treated with respect and dignity
- To be responsive to concerns and complaints mentioned during their visit
- To show concern for their privacy and their comfort
- To be offered the opportunity to ask questions about financial responsibilities
Your patients want to be a team player, one who takes a personal interest in achieving their quest for maximum health potential. These 21st century patients now want to know what they must do to stay healthy and keep their bodies from malfunctioning. Taking drugs with side effects is what they are trying to avoid.
Non-drug holistic care
Chiropractic delivers positive results without drugs. The medical profession focuses more on treating symptoms and less on building or maintaining the body’s resistance to disease. Chiropractic promotes a natural, noninvasive, holistic approach to healing.
Patient interaction provides positive feedback for both doctors and patients, relieves patient pain and anxiety, and promotes satisfaction. Patients can function physically and mentally in a more expected and positive manner.
Currently, prospective patients are likely to consult their phone and question Siri for answers such as:
- Where is the closest chiropractor to my location?
- What kind of care and treatments do they provide?
Questions you need to ask yourself in regard to your website and personal health care include:
- Is your website trustworthy, easily navigable and equipped with a modern web design built for performance and customized to your practice’s needs?
- Does your website have search engine optimization to rank you against your competitors?
- Does your website update content with patient education videos which increase engagement?
- Can your website sell anywhere, to anyone, across the Internet?
- Does your Facebook advertising boost your practice to targeted ads on the internet?
Search and Google ads
Google advertising is also important for search results that exemplify your practice.
Potential internet-searching patients know specifically what they’re looking for. They are more educated than ever before in caring for their own bodies, and they are more than ready to invest in their health care. Daily, they seek to be at their true potential.
Let’s say you have an exemplary website that brings patients into your office. But, if they choose you as their doctor, can you provide the quality of personal health care they are seeking?
“Confidence of success is the first prerequisite of success, but the most important thing is not what we say to a patient but what we are in our innermost hearts, what we secretly think and believe.” (Tournier)
Where do new patients come from? All sick people share the need to be the object of especially attentive care, whether their disease is psychic or organic.
How do we get and keep new patients? One cannot help anyone unless they’re willing to take an active interest and find pleasure in understanding others.
What are patients looking for? “Mutual acceptance and validation are projected as the patient accepts and is accepted by their chiropractor. Thus, patient suffering is validated and is seen as an acceptable illness, one that can be handled. The most ordinary and everyday consultation is an appeal for help in removing an obstacle from the path to success. Threatened by disease or by some troubling symptom, every piece of advice given by the doctors, in the patient’s eyes, is a means of restoring his or her chances of success.” (Coulehan)
Why would they want to come to you for their personal health care? Being genuine reflects our trust and confidence in what chiropractic can offer our patients at any given time. This combination, plus attentiveness, nourishes the patience’s desire to become well, and moves them toward accepting their responsibility in the process of their healing.
Why would they want to refer someone to you? We as chiropractors decide if chiropractic can help our patients. Only with genuine concern, not hiding behind a role or façade, can we build trust with our patients. When patients receive positive results from your care, you are more likely to ensure a referral-based practice, as well as a generational practice.
You can fulfill patient expectations by validating their symptoms as a condition that can be treated safely with chiropractic. This is a fundamental tenant in our clinical art. Choosing to use simple words during their clinical experience allows your patient to understand your approach to their condition and willingly participate and value their treatment. Subluxation, nerve compression, poor nutrition, chronic tension, and increased muscle tone are acceptable and easily understood concepts. Also helpful are visual aids such as a spinal model, diagram or X-rays.
Chiropractic clinical action. We don’t just sit, talk and write prescriptions; we do something. We attend to our patients’ discomfort by handling and touching them, which opens a channel of communication. Patient commitment and cooperation may include a program of exercise, nutritional counseling, stress management techniques and behavioral change.
Personal health care: engaging and listening
Engaging the patient in their treatment plan heavily depends on our clinical skills of attentiveness, listening, and relieving fears and stress by interpreting their symptoms and delivering a positive response to each treatment. We are successfully caring for patients when they choose to take responsibility for their own health. Peace of mind, satisfaction, trust, hope and cooperation in your treatment plan fuels patients with a desire for recovery. Accepting their responsibilities ensures cooperation toward their search for optimal health.
Patients want to be heard, and have their problems seen through their own eyes. Doctor, wouldn’t it be complimentary if your patients told others: “I finally found someone who hears me and understands me.” Remember, it’s not about us. We must be a sponge to their words. Let’s not try to impress them; instead, try to understand them. Let us join with them in their need for a healthier lifestyle and personal health care. There is joy in accepting the challenge of trying our best to help another human being. Listening leads to action. We all want to be healthy and survive.
GARY BORING, DC, BCAO (Board Certified Atlas Orthogonal), LCP (HON.), FICA, graduated from Cleveland Chiropractic K.C. in 1968. His father graduated in 1934 from CCC K.C., and his brother in 1966. Boring Chiropractic has served patients for 86 years.
The Adventure of living. New York: First Harper and Row
Tournier, Paul (1965)
Grant Paper: Chiropractic and the clinical art. Soc. Sci Med 21(4):383-90. Coulehan, John L, (1985).