I’m Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits.
When marketing in a pandemic, you have to go where your audience is. Currently, that means home. The pandemic has led to many patients wanting to go home and forego admission into a post-acute care facility. This is sometimes despite the need for continued care and significant functional impairment.
Due to the fear of contracting COVID-19, patients have chosen to take a chance on managing their care at home, even when it may not be the safest choice. This fear has also caused them to delay care, leading to sicker patients with progressively worsening illnesses, languishing at home.
Delayed care has created an impending calamity within the current pandemic: sicker patients going untreated.
A few places you want to market during a pandemic such as COVID-19 are:
- Home health companies
- Emergency department and observation units
- Outpatient surgical centers
- Physician practices
One of the sites to market is home, utilizing home health companies. Partner with home health companies to quickly transition patients who are unsafe at home into an acute inpatient rehab facility. Offer yourself and your services as a solution to their problem–sicker patients who are unsafe at home–while making it easy to transition patients.
You want to outline the innumerable list of conditions and scenarios in which home patients who fail at home can benefit from transferring to acute inpatient rehabilitation. Make yourself available to the home health care staff to review and assess patients to determine if they are appropriate for acute inpatient rehab. Let them know you would like to partner with them to achieve the common goal of high-quality care and patient safety.
Another area to market is in the emergency department and observation units. Develop a relationship with the E.R. and observation case managers. Explain your area of expertise and discuss how you can be an asset to them in safely and effectively carrying out discharge planning. Discuss how, in the current pandemic, you can serve as a unique resource to prevent bounce back and hospital readmission. Preventing the bounce-back of potentially sicker patients can avoid the potential strain on resources (such as ventilators), as sicker patients may need these supportive measures.
Don’t forget about outpatient surgical centers. There, you want to discuss the benefits of discharging patients to a facility that can provide intense, high-quality therapy with the added bonus of physician oversight from a physician trained in physical medicine and rehabilitation. Explain how this helps improves surgical outcomes while keeping the patients safe, post-operatively. Acute inpatient rehab leads to quicker recovery and faster return to their prior level of function, which helps protect the patient from debilitating postoperative complications.
The next site to potentially market during the pandemic is directly at physician practices. Provide a resource to these local physicians who may have identified patients whose medical conditions are worsening and require further higher-level medical oversight while bypassing the need for a trip to the E.R., which can lead to potential exposure to COVID-19.
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I’m Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits. Follow me on social media @DrHassanRehab.