When patients come to Mayo Clinic, they become local consumers. Many people are surprised to learn that patients spend only 30 percent of their time in the care setting – the remaining 70 percent is spent in the community.
Destination Medical Center (DMC) research shows that patients have four to five hours of free time per day – time they want to spend doing other things besides waiting for appointments. Visitors want to shop, dine, get outdoors, visit entertainment venues; as well as attend classes, demonstrations and seminars about staying healthy. This is a great opportunity for Mayo and its community partners.
It also means patient experiences need to be anticipated, especially for patients with unique needs – like kids.
Rochester is known for having things kids and families want, but Chris Moir, M.D., medical director for the Mayo Clinic Children’s Center, says the methods of getting families there can be improved.
Mayo staff do the best they can to direct patients toward family-friendly activities, from giving them directions to personally driving them there, but this is only one way to help families find things to do. Dr. Moir thinks existing services could be updated and re-packaged to assist families in getting the most out of their Rochester experience.
“Our job is to care for patients,” says Dr. Moir. “Yes, part of care is to look out for family needs when they’re staying in town, but that’s not our expertise. We have a new opportunity to bring experts in to connect families with the region and build meaningful bridges between patients and the community.” He recommends pursuing and welcoming visitors proactively instead of only offering services as needed.
DMC can help Mayo and the community connect patients and visitors with the activities they want. “DMC creates the strategy that allows us to proactively pursue opportunities rather than just addressing needs as they arise,” says Dr. Moir. “We need to maintain a balance between individual caring for families and what we as a community can provide.” He thinks the balance toward individual caring is emblematic of our Midwest roots, but we need to augment that warmhearted attitude with a more systemic, proactive approach to improve patient experience.
What are more proactive ways Mayo and the Rochester community can help improve the patient experience? Share your thoughts by commenting on this article.