Doctor’s note reveals shocking diagnosis

We’ve all had to do it. We don’t like doing it. Yet, we expect to do it every single time. What is “it”? Waiting for the doctor to see us. When we DON’T have to wait, it’s a pleasant surprise. But, it certainly isn’t the norm. However, a doctor’s note from an astute practice recently revealed a shocking diagnosis — and an immediate cure. This practice is certainly doing things a little differently than most.

Real world story: This past November, my mother returned home one afternoon from a regular appointment with her hearing doctor (Rancho Santa Fe Audiology). My thank you from doc-cropmom didn’t report to me being upset about anything. It was a fairly normal checkup. And yet, two days later, she received a letter in the mail along with a $25 gift card to Starbucks with a message from her doctor’s office:

“Mrs. Nyland, Thanks for the opportunity to serve you!”

What a thoughtful and memorable gesture. This doctor’s practice obviously places a high priority on diagnosing problems within the organization and taking immediate actions to apologize and solve the problems that it finds. Bravo for the effort of being and staying on time!

Strategies that Turn it Around:

1. Be on time.
2. If you’re running late, communicate immediately with your customers to inform them.
3. Send a handwritten note a couple of days later apologizing for the delay.
4. If you later hear from your patients or customers, LISTEN carefully to what they have to say. And don’t forget to show genuine empathy and interest in the feedback that you receive.

Remember: Patient and customer care isn’t only about treating the problems of the people whom we serve. It also involves being able to diagnose problems within our organizations and fixing them. And the first step to doing so is to know our patients’ and customers’ expectations. How else can we meet and exceed expectations if we don’t know what they are?

Have YOU ever received a handwritten apology from a doctor’s office? Please share in the comments section below. I look forward to engaging with you and your comments.

2 Responses to “Doctor’s note reveals shocking diagnosis”


  1. 1 Maria December 12, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    I actually received flowers from my ankle surgeon the day after I had ankle surgery.


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