As patients and consumers gain transparency across other industries, it becomes an expectation – including their healthcare needs. Access to information and user-friendly data is crucial for practices to stay open and grow. 

 

What is Transparency in Healthcare?

Transparency in healthcare is open, truthful communication between the healthcare system, employees, and patients. It does not hide or conceal hidden conditions, costs, or information regarding their healthcare options or care. Open and honest communication allows patients to make better informed decisions regarding the care they receive and treatment options. 

In the age of information, patients are able to find the answer to any question or information about any topic essentially at the tip of their fingers. Smartphones are encouraging the need for transparency. With this open and honest communication comes a rise in importance in reviews and ratings across local listing profiles and social media. Regardless of it being good or bad, that information is accessible to patients or consumers looking for a physician. 

74% of people on the internet engage with social media and 80% of those users are looking for healthcare related information. The more transparent your practice or healthcare system can be, the better. 

Transparency can include: 

  • Cost of services
  • Insurance information
  • Practice information
  • Values and standards
  • Compliance
  • Policies and Standards

How to Be Transparent

Transparency starts within an organization, with the employees. This will inform them of all important matters and what changes may be coming down the road. The more they know, the more valued they will feel, and be able to assist patients to the best of their ability. 

A critical part of transparency is patient engagement. Whether through face-to-face, in-office visits or email reminders about appointments, or sending educational content to patients, the patients need to feel valued and informed along every step of their healthcare journey. This includes any changes in billing systems, physician changes, office hours, or anything else that could affect their visit or continued care. 

Providing Value and Open Communication

There are a few marketing tactics that you can implement to help ensure full transparency with your employees and patients: 

  1. Responsive, Mobile-friendly website. Patients need to be able to find information about your practice easily. Provide insight on who you are, what you do, and what you value. Include a mission statement, patient testimonials, or anything that could be education to potential patients. 
  2. Social Media. With 74% of patients looking for information on social media and a 60% growth in healthcare internet searches over the last decade, it is important to provide practice updates, relevant information, and industry news on social media. Interact with patients to build a relationship with them and respond to all reviews and comments, especially if they’re negative. 
  3. Industry-specific blog content. Create content and articles that are relevant and specific to your practice and industry. Act as a resource for patients and potential patients, so they have answers to their questions and are educated on the types of conditions you treat or services you provide. 
  4. Local Listings. With over 3.5 billion Google searches being performed every day, make sure your local listings are up to date with vital practice information so you can be found. Make them optimized for local searches so potential patients in your area can find your practice easily.