Why is Empathy Important to Healthcare Companies
Friday, April 29, 2016
Empathy is the ability to share and understand the feelings of another.
Most would assume when a decision is made to enter the field of healthcare, a level of empathy would come naturally. It is universal that most of us do not visit a healthcare professional when we are feeling our best. Patients want to feel listened to, understood, and cared about.
How important is it to have empathy when delivering bad news, fielding phone calls from scared and confused patients, and dealing with upset patients over billing? According to a Wall Street Journal report, "Research shows that when doctors don't listen to patients, they miss important health cues and misdiagnose illness. Meanwhile, patients who don't understand what their doctors say fail to follow their regimens, leading to preventable hospitalizations, complications and poor outcomes. And a breakdown in physician-patient communication is cited in 40% or more of malpractice suits."
Healthcare companies, as with any area of customer service, must understand the importance of the use of empathy.
Empathy builds trust and communication with your patients.
Your patients want to know you understand what they may be feeling, When you demonstrate this understanding they trust your diagnosis, instructions for treatment, and that what you are telling them is in the best interest of their overall health. This trust and communication can improve patient retention and willingness to follow health care directives. Giving patients your full attention until the end of each interaction cements the foundation of trust by knowing you are focused on their questions and condition.
Empathy Improves effectiveness of physicians' care
Many medical programs are currently requiring classes that help teach empathy to future healthcare companies and professionals. Groundbreaking research conducted at the Massachusetts General Hospital has demonstrated that empathy training can significantly improve the quality of human interactions. These programs can help improve patient care by teaching professionals to anticipate the needs of individuals as well as any possible concerns that can arise from treatment. Overall patient satisfaction improves knowing the caregiver or healthcare company cares about what they are going through.
Your Company Should Hire For Empathy
Developing your empathy skills – and introducing a more empathic culture to your workplace in general – has the capacity to transform your company and the experience of employees within it, argues writer and The School of Life founding faculty member Roman Krznaric. Empathy can help anticipate your patients’ needs and the needs of their support system such as family members. Empathetic professionals and customer service reps further expand the successful use of empathy with clients and patients.
Our customer service representatives are highly trained to empathize with your clients, anticipate their needs, and build trust. Don’t alienate your patient clientele by neglecting to show you care about what they are going through. Let us help you demonstrate empathy is important to your healthcare company.