May 18, 2020
Urgent care centers are experiencing a significant boom as consumers place a high demand on convenience for their health care needs. The number of U.S. retail medical clinics operating in 2018 was 14 times higher than a decade before. However, some markets are experiencing oversaturation, which is creating fierce competition between each urgent care startup. Here are three tips on creating a thriving urgent care business model.
Focus On Operational Excellence
Focusing on operational excellence is one of the key components for a profitable urgent care business model. To achieve operational excellence, an urgent care clinic should focus on improving workflows and eliminating costly administrative errors that negatively impact an urgent care profit margin. This can be done by training staff to spot potential issues that can create future problems and be empowered to take corrective actions. For example, information on claims can be double-checked before submission to avoid rejection and extra cost spent on rework to correct the error. The staff should also be encouraged to look for and suggest ways to improve and streamline current processes.
An urgent care center can also focus on controlling labor expenses by consolidating redundant tasks and cross-training whenever possible. A successful urgent care business will also anticipate change and be willing to adapt to it. This means that you should stay informed regarding current market trends and technology and be aware of any shifts that are happening in your community as well as across the healthcare landscape.
Improve Patient Experience
Patients have a high level of expectations when it comes to receiving care from an urgent care facility. Due to high deductible health care plans that have shifted the financial responsibility for healthcare more on consumers, patients expect to receive the same level of access and convenience that they get from other types of service providers. You can offer a better experience for your patients by using technology to provide conveniences, such as online appointment scheduling, updates on wait times, and mobile payment processes.
Create An Engaged Employee Culture
Creating an engaged employee culture is critical in order for you to achieve operational excellence and satisfying your patients. You can do this by allowing your staff to have a voice on improving your urgent care business model. If employees feel invested in their work, they will strive towards excellence in fulfilling their roles and responsibilities. This can vastly improve your clinic’s bottom line.
You can help your employees feel more invested by helping them understand the key performance indicators for the urgent care center and how they affect it. Creating fun challenges to improve the metrics can be an incredible source of motivation. As employees meet certain goals regarding these key indicators, you can consider rewarding them with simple rewards to encourage even further growth, such as gift cards, salary increases, or yearly bonuses. Even simple acknowledgments of their hard work and sincere expressions of thanks can go a long way.
Despite the booming market, urgent care business owners can rise above the crowd by fully optimizing their operational excellence and experience for their patients. As an urgent care business owner, it’s important to take a hard look at the current and future landscape of your industry and focus on technology and systems that can better meet the demands of today’s consumers. Recognizing that an engaged employee culture will catapult your business into meeting its financial goals will ensure that you have a thriving urgent care business model for years to come.