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An interactive and didactic course

'People will never forget how you made them feel'

Jemima Owen-Jones

Posted: Monday, September 16, 2019

Amanda Carones

The European Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgeons (ESCRS) held their 37th Congress at the Paris Expo at Porte de Versaille, for what was the largest ophthalmology exhibition in Europe.

Thousands of surgeons from all over the world, alongside hundreds of companies, came together at the new, state-of-the-art facility for five days of stimulating discussion and debate in the heart of Paris.

With over 120 instructional courses to choose from throughout the event, attendees were spoilt for choice. However, those who headed over to Sunday’s Practice Management Masterclass would not have been disappointed with what was a highly interactive and didactic workshop-based course led by Amanda Carones, Founder and CEO of Eligite SRL, and Mike Malley, President and Founder of CRM Group.

In the session devoted to ‘Building A Patient-Centric Ophthalmic Practice That Maximises Profits”, Carones and Malley challenged surgeons to assess their effectiveness in various aspects of their clinics. This included physician time management; practice profit margins; patient education processes; premium services planning; staff conversion training; practice culture commitment; exit-strategy evaluation; staff incentive strategies; maximising surgeon production; and costs controls.

Malley began the session with a question for the audience: “What factor most interferes with your success?”

Attendees answered:
Waiting times
The right people in the right positions
Expenses for acquiring new technologies
Form completion
Click funnel conversion
Appointment scheduling
Generating an online review

The experts helped to address these pain points with what they referred to as the “ophthalmic holy grail”, best summarised with a quote by Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos: “When you reduce friction and make something easy, people do more of it.”

Carones then went on to discuss the most effective way of driving revenues by converting more patients to premium procedures and adjusting the practice flow.

She said: “Stop penalising premium patients who come in willing to spend their money as this causes patients to lose confidence in the surgeon.”

Pushing patient care to the lowest provider level was another key takeaway from the session.

Mike Malley

Malley explained: “As reimbursement continues to drop – and the shortage of ophthalmologists continues to rise – it is imperative for surgeons to understand the value of their time and how it relates to the bottom line. By pushing care to the lowest provider level, surgeons can maximise their time seeing the right kind of patients in the clinic, and spending the rest of their time in the OR!”

The session ended with a summary of the ‘best patient-centric approach’ and alluded to the “hyper-sensitivity of patients”. A famous quote by Maya Angelou, expressed this point: “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Malley urged practice managers to pay closer attention to their clinics from the patient’s perspective, to ensure all staff are aware of their contribution and role in the care of the patient, to involve the patient’s family when necessary and to respect the patients’ viewpoint – especially with regard to cultural differences.

As the Practice Management Masterclass drew to a close, delegates were encouraged to take the opportunity to explore the truly beautiful city, before reconvening the following day for another jam-packed agenda that explored ”Challenges and Opportunities for the 21st-Century Practice”, moderated by LiveseySolar’s very own, Rod Solar.