According to the Patientpop blog, a survey conducted at outpatient clinics in New York City found a direct positive correlation between aesthetically appealing waiting rooms and patient opinions about doctors’ visits. If you feel your waiting area could use a lift to add to your patients’ experience, we’ve rounded up five things to keep in mind when it comes to making some updates to your office.

REFRESHMENTS: Sparkling water, a Keurig machine with plenty of K Cups, even wine and beer – are all perks that can be appreciated by your patient while they are waiting to be seen for their visit. An optical store in Columbus, OH has a full coffee bar and home-baked treats on Desert Friday; “We always have a good array of coffees with flavored creamers and water for our patients. It is a place for families to hang out if everyone is not scheduled”, says Dr. Cynthia Sayers, owner of the EyeShop Optical.

ARTWORK: Displaying the work of local talent creates a community feel. Consider adding a kiosk of jewelry made by local artists or hang artwork on the wall of familiar town monuments. To really make a statement, find a local artist to do a mural on a wall inside your waiting room for a custom touch.

FURNITURE: On this one, you’re probably better off going in one of two directions: Sheer comfort with a home-like feel, or an eye-pleasing consistency with the rest of your space to support branding. This will enhance a sense of professionalism, keeping your patients comfortable, or both. What you don’t want is an ugly middle ground – used office furniture that inspires neither comfort nor confidence. Furnishings play a big part in making your waiting area distinctive, so be creative!

KIDS (Big & Small): Don’t pretend they’ll sit and be good. “Color therapy!” says Heather Harrington at Elevated Eyecare in Denver, CO. “We have coloring pages for all ages.” Our personal favorite? Etch-a-Sketches. “Our patients cut if they find themselves in the reception area longer than a few minutes,” says Leah Johnson at Central Texas Eye Center in San Marcos, TX. “But they can go back to childhood with our Etch-a-Sketches. Super fun and unexpected.”

TECHNOLOGY: Beyond WiFi, are you charger friendly? Tablets with access to healthcare information and self check-in kiosks are growing more popular. Educational videos are encouraged, but don’t overdo it: A study by Gary A. Nyberg and Christine Guzzo Vickery, found only 41 percent of respondents want to watch TV in a waiting room. The top activities were reading (95 percent) and using mobile phones (57 percent).

Looking for videos to loop in your waiting room or exam rooms?
Check out our brand specific consumer videos available on our YouTube channel!


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