The month of February has its own share of unique holidays. Valentine's Day is a favorite holiday for some and the bain of existence for others.
And then there’s Car Insurance Day on February 1. Though it might sound benign, Car Insurance Day is an excellent way to remind others to hit the road with extra security.
But there is one holiday that is so good, so worthwhile, that it’s not even a holiday — it’s a holi-week: Patient Appreciation Week.
Falling on the first week of February, Patient Appreciation Week is exactly what it sounds like: a week celebrating those who come through your door for your exceptional patient care.
Patients put a large amount of trust in you, whether it has to do with their health or even their finances through their prescription copays.
However, we all know that the pharmacist-patient relationship goes beyond selling a prescription. In the case of independent pharmacies, you play a vital role in your patient’s long-term health.
Many patients choose to stay in the same independent pharmacy for years because of their dependability and reliability. Patient Appreciation Week is the perfect time to celebrate them and let them know there is no pharmacy without the patient.
Here is how you can celebrate Patient Appreciation Week, in ways big and small.
Everyone likes gifts. Everyone also likes celebrating holidays, no matter how niche they are. Hosting small events in your independent pharmacy can further strengthen your relationship with your patients and your place in the community.
Even if you’re not the party-planning type, you can make a small pharmacy event into a truly worthwhile affair. Bring some complimentary (if you can spare it) OTC products — multivitamins and mini-packets of Advil are going to be your best friend here.
If your building has a vision center, bring them along for the festivities. They can help celebrate Patient Appreciation Week by promoting their products (such as lens wipes).
This small event doesn’t need to be extravagant. All you need is a couple of tables, chairs, and balloons (preferably with your pharmacy’s name on it). Goodie bags wouldn’t hurt either.
The rest is up to you: talk with your patients, get to know them a little better, and have an all-around good time.
If a party happens but no one comes, is it a party at all?
Communication is an essential toolkit for your pharmacy’s success across all levels. It also helps your patients know that Patient Appreciation Week is happening.
If you can, use your automated call/text message system to inform your patients know of the pharmaceutical festivities.
Don’t forget about your social media pages. Scream to the cyber heavens that Patient Appreciation Week is upon us. Get creative with the captions and visuals. Do away with the idea that pharmacies are these lifeless, overly sterile facilities devoid of fun and joy.
Get colorful, creative, and — most of all — fun with it. Just a hint of fun goes a long way in your patients’ opinion of your independent pharmacy. In this case, work and play absolutely go hand in hand.
This one requires an obvious level of discretion. Don’t let Patient Appreciation Week slip you up by delivering sensitive patient information by mistake.
HIPAA warnings aside, shouting your patients out is literally what Patient Appreciation Week is all about. As mentioned earlier, your patients are the backbone of your pharmacy.
Every prescription you fill, every vaccine you provide, and all the clinical services you offer are nothing without your patients. They call it “patient care” for a reason.
This idea is very similar to the idea of patient testimonials. Once a patient gives you the green light, ask them how they feel about your pharmacy, mainly what they like about it and what makes them come back.
You’ll want to ask your longtime patients, the ones who’ve been with your pharmacy since the beginning. They can offer a unique perspective on what makes your small business the success it is.
Not only will they tell the online world about your pharmacy’s greatness, but they can explain why they like your pharmacy in ways you hadn’t thought of.
Sometimes the best way to show your appreciation is to simply do the work — but do it exceptionally well. At the end of the day, your role as a pharmacist is to ensure your patients are taking their medications as prescribed by their physician.
That’s what they go into your pharmacy for: to get healthier. You likely offer a grand slew of vaccinations and state-of-the-art clinical services, but they won’t amount to much unless you do the basics.
Take an Olympian, for example. Their athletic feats are extraordinary and seemingly defy logic. But they couldn’t run that record marathon or break swimming records if they didn’t work on the basics.
Streamline your pharmacy’s filling process and simplify your point-of-sale process for your patients — these are a few ways to master the pharmacy basics.
Celebrate Patient Appreciation Week by doing what your independent pharmacy does best: help your patients by doing the right things the right way.
Though there are tons of ways you can celebrate Patient Appreciation Week, pick the activities that are true to your independent pharmacy.
Just like how every pharmacy software system has something different to offer, your independent pharmacy benefits from blazing its own trail.
Patient Appreciation Week is the perfect time to express gratitude to your patients and the essential role they play in your pharmacy’s success. In short, they are your pharmacy’s success.
Gratitude doesn’t have to be seasonal either. Patient Appreciation Week is a great time to start but it doesn’t have to end after February 7. Sustained gratitude can change your pharmacy’s morale in subtle but powerful ways.
Make gratitude the main takeaway from this year’s Patient Appreciation Week. Make it a yearlong celebration. Your customers deserve it.