Home | Blog | HIPAA App | 5 Customer Service Mistakes That Medical Offices Make

Reading time: 12 minutes

Good customer service should be common sense and one of the main objectives to aim for. Resolving queries and following up with the client’s needs are a must when preparing the staff to deal with proper efficiency.


With the assumption that your clients are being truthful, service remains as the key element for a good and functional medical office, which will in turn greatly affect your business reputation.


There are many common mistakes to make. If you want to avoid them, read on to see some of the most common problems to avoid.

Patient-centric perspective

Treating follow-up appointments for health issues should not be a new customer experience. The relationship between the customer and the medical office will be continuous and on-going, with patients referring to their health provider as their doctors, even if they are not going through an active health problem. Thus, they expect the medical office to treat their future consultations by linking them to their past issues.

The healthcare industry is infamous for not being too easy with its patients, especially when referencing insurance. For them, it can be something confusing which will in turn lead to frustration. There can be more ways than one for the patient to contact for a single procedure, or there can be a communication barrier between the patient and their healthcare provider. With the employment of a patient-centric point of view, medical offices can improve the way they care for their patients while greatly reducing hospital visits, secondary consultations and readmissions.

Additionally, a patient-centric planning will improve patient engagement and give them a better, more personalized experience. Moreover, it will enable the medical office to cater their marketing campaigns, being a great benefit for the office.

Many health companies are enlarging their services above hospitals and clinics, becoming active partakers in the well-being of the patients. With the rise of improved tools and technology, convenience is becoming ever more improved for them, having patient-centricity being a major addition in this vast competitive environment.

A common mistake that medical offices make is to fail to consider the necessities of the patients. The focus lies on the business of the doctors, rather than the patients themselves. This means patients will hesitate because of the inflexibility, which in turn reflects on terrible customer service.

Patient-centric perspectives are necessary for your business to be competitive and survive well into the future.

HIPAA compliance

Ensuring that your staff follows the HIPAA norms is an essential component for your business. When not considered properly, you risk getting fined, something everyone wants to avoid.


Being short-staffed: You need to have sufficient staff in order to deal with your growing patient list.


Data Protection: A member of staff’s login details can be easy to access for other employees. Make sure that staff members have a time limit to access sensitive information, while also enforcing unauthorized employees no access at all. When failing to keep this in mind, you risk a breach in privacy.


Record Confidentiality: It’s required by law to keep the patient’s information safe. Aside from keeping medical records confidential, the healthcare staff must make sure to have their passwords and other sensitive information secured. Any violation to HIPPAA laws will get you a large fine, some being up to 25.000$. Safeguarding patient information is necessary for a good patient care.


Imprecise information sharing: With access to a patient’s PHI, the staff must make sure they only share information with those who are concerned and need to know. Accessing PHI while being unauthorized is a grave violation, and can result in hefty penalties. Because of this, healthcare providers must make sure good, informative training is done by part of their employees.

Disorganized front desk

Having a well-organized front desk will ensure the avoidance of customer service mistakes. While quality care is a huge asset, it may not be not sufficient to provide a proper service. Patients want quality service and quality care both. An unsatisfied patient due to a bad office experience might post a negative review online, which will reflect badly on your business. Not only will bad reviews damage your practice’s reputation, and will lead to them the competitors.


Hiring unqualified front desk staff is a common mistake and something to avoid. Many offices put the employee with the most continuous position on the reception desk, which doesn’t mean he or she has the best back-office knowledge. This will have bad consequences on patient retention and satisfaction. Furthermore, a disorganized front desk will make your invoicing a nightmare.


A professional staff for your front desk should avoid lying to the patients, offer alternative options, and be helpful altogether. A friendly, attentive staff will ensure the patient has a good experience. Don’t forget that patients have different necessities and issues, so the staff must provide solutions to them all.


By keeping a well-organized front desk, you can differentiate your practice from those of the competitors while also attracting more clients. Although it’s not an easy task, a good staff will help maintain the office running smoothly and make sure that patients have a pleasant time at your office.

Lack of training

Many healthcare practice managers lack customer service training. This lack of training reflects beyond customer service to other areas, like leadership, government regulations, and revenue problems just to name a few.


The quality and expertise of customer service in healthcare practices is hugely important. Patients with a bad experience have a lot of options, and they will take their needs elsewhere if they are unsatisfied. With training, your medical office and staff will ensure long-term customer base by refining patient satisfaction.


Healthcare staff must be polite. There are many complaints regarding long wait times and rushed appointments. Even if the patient doesn’t need to see a specialist, bad communication can worsen the situation. Customer service training is essential for good medical practices. It will help your patients and staff both. With excellent customer service skills, your staff will receive less complaints and be much more efficient.

Failure to maintain records

Healthcare offices will be subjected to disciplinary action if they don’t properly keep their patient records. Repeated violations of this nature can even result in a public reprimand.

To avoid any of these problems, make sure your staff and system keeps a thorough and well organized history of all your patient records. You never know when a patient’s health history can evolve into something that needs a background check. To add, you will also better deal with any insurance policy when the need comes. 

In Conclusion

Keeping your Medical clinic with a well-organized and trained staff will make a world of a difference. Not only will it make your work easier, it will also ensure your patients have a suitable and good experience leading to a better reputation for you, the provider.

Share On:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *