It's a troubling trend. Vulnerable patients fear a doctor or hospital visit may expose them to potentially deadly COVID-19. But if they don't seek the care they need, their health is at risk.

According to best-practices firm The Advisory Board:

  • 70% of consumers are worried about contracting the new coronavirus if they seek care for their health issues.
  • Research reveals a lower rate of routine disease management and preventive screenings.
  • Alarmingly, there have been fewer hospitalizations for acute conditions such as heart attacks, strokes and appendicitis.

That's scary for clinicians striving to keep their patients in optimum health.

Swift reassuring action on your part can help reverse the trend and bring your patients in for the care they need.

Share your safety protocols

Put the proper precautions in place and inform patients of your tactics. You can:

  • Establish Non-COVID Care (NCC) zones. Keep COVID-19 patients in a different wing or location. Make it clear that clinicians who treat coronavirus patients are not treating others.
  • Reserve special hours for high-risk patients. For seniors, expectant mothers and immunocompromised patients who need preventive and follow-up visits.
  • Set up COVID-19 screening and testing protocols. For patients and everyone entering your facility.
  • Adopt universal masking for patients and staff. Make personal protective equipment (PPE) available to patients if they don't have sufficient protection.
  • Sanitize public surfaces. Continuously and in plain sight of patients.
  • Practice social distancing. Space out waiting room chairs, restrict the number of visitors, establish contactless check-in procedures.
  • Consider curbside or drive-thru stations. To deliver services like vaccines.

Develop and deliver your messaging

Make the community aware of the safety measures you've put in place for non-COVID-19 patients seeking care:

  • Feature videos and photo albums of your safety protocols.
  • Direct patients to your nurse hotline to help them decide if they need care.
  • Post FAQs and a list of available services on your website.
  • Send a personalized email or text to your patients.
  • Call patients who have scheduled a visit to answer any questions and concerns they may have.

Share a public statement about the health risks of delaying care. Work with local news outlets, post PSAs and podcasts, and encourage public health officials to promote your message during their COVID-19 updates.

Craft the message that will encourage patients to return

Don't delay. Patients who defer essential care may be putting themselves at risk. If you need a shot of energy and drive to push your message out to the public, call CMG Health Marketing now. We're here to help.