We know people oftentimes delay care around the holidays. Add in the COVID-19 resurgence and healthcare leaders are worrying, even more, about their communities and their willingness to come to the hospitals for needed care, both critical and routine.
We’ve been helping our partners sculpt messages and refine their strategies to express that their hospitals are the safest place to be when health is of concern. Arriving safely in the new year is an important step in healing, and getting through a COVID-Christmas is the first objective.
8 Tips to communicate your hospital is safe when your patients need care
- Express that your institution is well versed in infection control, and while COVID is scary, you are well equipped to keep patients safe for everyday care and emergencies.
- Be aware of how your visitor restrictions may impact people’s idea of how “open” you are. While restrictions may be in place for visitors, that doesn’t mean you aren’t ready to accept patients today.
- Waiting is not okay. For many emergencies, seconds count, and even a slight delay can have life impacting consequences. Communicate the urgency of healthcare decisions and to not hesitate in the case of a true emergency. The safest place to be in the case of an emergency is at the hospital.
- On promotions, continue showing happy masked patients and reassuring providers. Consider eye protection too. Choose photos that express comfort and joy, despite distance and face coverings, but keep the tone and language within your brand standards so things don’t appear too generic.
- Reinforce your precautions. While they may seem like second nature to you (of COURSE you do everything you can to avoid transmission), your patients may not understand the day-to-day safeguards in place. For many potential patients, those steps may not seem important until it’s their family’s safety on the line.
- Explain that your infection control protocols have been in place long before this pandemic, and will continue long after it’s gone. You have staff and providers who have committed their lives to safety.
- Set PPE expectations. Be open about what a patient may see upon entering the hospital, their check-in procedure and upon admission. Reassure that your supply is sound and an important part of your protection plan.
- Make the most of your owned media with updated announcements. As things change, your website, blogs and social media will be an essential tool for communication and service line updates.
Maintain your credibility
As always, be the voice of reason and reassurance. Your institution has earned a lot of credibility through this difficult pandemic, so maintain that reputation by staying in touch and being a source of calm this December.
We’re wishing you a holiday season full of peace and gratitude, and sending our warmest wishes of support! If you’re wanting to personalize these messages for your institution, the strategy pros at Ten Adams can support your efforts and lighten the load. We are here to help you stay safe and sane through the holidays. Let us help.