The Right Way to Introduce a Patient to a New Associate
The transfer of goodwill is an important and delicate procedure and it needs to be done correctly with the appropriate value introduction.
When a patient is in your operatory, look at all the factors—their loyalty to the practice, value mindset, immediate clinical need—to determine if they would be suitable to transfer. If they are, bring the associate into the operatory and introduce him or her to the patient. Have a discussion in front of the patient about their clinical condition, treatment need and methodology options.
Use body language and verbal skills that demonstrate clinical equality and collegial professionalism. Do NOT make it appear that you are telling the associate what needs to be done. It’s important that the patient sees your confidence in the new doctor as your peer.
Then, with the associate standing there, explain to the patient that yours is very much a team practice where all the clinical providers consult and support each other. Make certain to give a reason why you want the associate to provide care that supports the patient’s goals. You want it to sound like a referral to the right clinician, rather than a transfer to a new person.
This way, instead of simply dividing up a patient base and possibly alienating some loyal patients, you’re growing the practice family in a natural way that makes everyone feel respected.