Build neurosurgery volume by understanding that over 70% of patients decide where to get their cranial surgery done after extensive research and a second (or third) opinion.
More craniotomy patients reportedly travel for surgery than with any other procedure. Why? Because when you have a brain tumor, even though surgery must be done immediately in most cases, it is considered an elective procedure because the patient gets a few days to think about their options. During that time, they consult friends and family- but mostly the internet – do decide what to do.
Here is what you must to keep your patients from traveling and find others who are willing to travel to you:
- Build a profile for your surgeons online. Be their publicist. Make them famous. Boast of their achievements and education and fellowships: get it out there on the internet.
- Your docs must blog about issues related to a craniotomy. What to expect… Family involvement… Stories of other patients (with no HIPAA violations)… and whatever else you can think of. You may have to write the posts for them, but make sure the patient sees multiple posts per week from your surgeons.
- Do both SEM (search engine marketing) and SEO (search engine optimization). Google is very smart. They will most always prioritize a doctor geographically close to where the search originated. They know that generally someone searching wants to find the best doctor in their home State or in a surrounding state. Google will help you if you try and help yourself.
- Facilitate patients uploading their films to your website. Most patients get their films electronically and can quickly ask you for a second opinion.
- Your doctors must personally answer internet inquiries. Patients want to talk to the surgeon who will do the surgery. A quick phone consult reportedly has a 65% chance of getting the second opinion patient to come to the consulting institution.
With just a few adjustments your craniotomy volume can increase in weeks- not months or years – but in weeks.