Healthcare Practice “Waiting Rooms” In 2020

Check this out. Fascinating website, actually. What you will see is a company dedicated to improving the “waiting room” experience, whether it be live or virtual.

Why? Three reasons. First, study findings indicate that issues with the waiting room experience, rather than issues with the actual delivery of the medical care that they received, constitute the most frequent reasons for patients leaving a medical practice.  

Second, the COVID-19 pandemic has made it totally unsafe and unsatisfactory to “store” multiple patients in one closed room while awaiting in-person medical care. The new approach, having patients wait in their car until the practitioner is ready for them, requires some significant adaptations. Screening for Covid symptoms, filling out registration forms, etc. all are now getting handled from the patient’s phone.

A final consideration, but far from the least significant, is the realization that  even telemedicine requires a “waiting room.” The virtual space where medical histories, insurance information, etc. are gathered before the practitioner logs on.  

Bottom Line. All of this leaves me, as usual, pondering. Pondering whether there is an opportunity for those of us in the pharmaceutical vertical to get involved in filling the dead air that characterizes waiting rooms with messages that we want to get across to patients. There aren’t any old magazines lying around in a patient’s car or a virtual waiting room, so it would be a great opportunity to keep a patient amused while telling her something important. 

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