For many practitioners, the holidays bring a unique set of challenges and pressures in both their professional and personal lives. At the Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED), however, we’d like to remind our members that the holiday season also brings unique opportunities to engage patients and connect with the community. Below are some suggestions to help spread some good cheer.
Increase your patients’ well being by offering information that’s relevant and timely. Diabetic patients face a host of potential issues during the winter months. With neuropathy making it difficult to detect normal sensation, reminders about keeping feet dry to avoid fungal infection and moisturized to prevent heel fissures will be appreciated. Electric blankets, heaters, hot baths and fireplaces are all a particular draw and a particular risk when colder weather hits. Pertinent posters and info sheets about footwear choice and fall prevention are also helpful. Part of increasing patient satisfaction (and referrals) is connecting with each patient about their current podiatric issues and past concerns in a way that is relevant. Holiday cards are another way of expressing gratitude to your patients and marketing your practice.
The holidays are also a good time to recognize your team and the hard work they put in all year. Opportunities like holiday lunches or dinners strengthen your practice by enabling co-workers to spend time with each other outside the office, forming bonds of friendship that will enhance the workplace atmosphere.
A gift to general practitioners in your area who generate referrals to your practice is always welcome and helps keep your name in the forefront. Gifts of food that can be enjoyed by the whole office are a good choice. This is also a good time of year to line up some speaking engagements and seminars at area nursing homes, schools and senior centers to help educate the public on important podiatric topics.
At IPED we offer members opportunities for peer to peer sharing on all aspects of practice management, patient care and the ever important work/personal life balance. To find out more about us and how a membership can benefit you contact our Executive Director, Ruth Ann Donahue at: 978-296-7634.