What is the mission of the Vanderbilt Health Clinic at Walgreens?
Excellent - outstanding; unusually good. In our healthcare context, this component incorporates medical, operational, interpersonal, financial, and professional excellence that distinguishes us from our peers and competitors. This is a key reason patients will come back and tell others about us.
Healthcare is different than other industries. People come to a retail clinic when they feel terrible. Usually they are not at their best emotionally. Every patient has a story. Every patient, just like us, is fighting a battle of some kind. They deserve an extra measure of kindness and grace.
To be gracious is to be generously kind to someone, even if they may not reciprocate.
Patients come to retail clinics because they are usually located near their home, parking is readily available, and they want to be seen quickly and efficiently. Because of this expectation, all our operational efforts must focus on simplicity and speed: check-in, registration, clinician visit, wrap-up, checkout, and prescription pickup, when needed.
Three in One
All three aspects must be present to create a satisfying patient experience.
Convenience without caring
Imagine a very convenient clinic but one in which you felt like you were being herded through. No one makes eye contact. No one says hello. Staff and clinicians are rude but very efficient, practicing evidence-based care. Patients will not be loyal to a clinic like this.
Caring without competence
Next, imagine a scenario with very convenient service, caring and warm staff and clinician, but the medical care is behind the times, simply wrong, or sloppily delivered. This too may make a patient feel cared for but won't help them. Worse, they will suffer as their underlying illness is not addressed.
Competence without convenience
Finally, imagine a scenario with top-notch clinicians, caring, attentive, and genuinely compassionate staff, but the wait was 3 hours. No matter how competent they are or how welcoming, the patient simply won't and can't wait that long for retail care.
A Different Scenario
Here is the story as it should be...
A patient is feeling awful, with fever 102F, aches, and chills. He has asthma and read a CDC newsletter that he should get treatment with flu medication.
Now imagine this:
He is greeted with a smile and welcome, shown to a seat, and checked in rapidly. He is seen quickly and the clinician efficiently, professionally, and expertly diagnoses influenza A and nothing else dangerous. The script is sent to the top of the pharmacy priority list. He waits 5 minutes, grabs the script, and heads home to crawl back in bed. He's in and out in under 40 minutes, happy to get back to the comfort of home, and grateful for his care.
The next week, his daughter develops a sore throat after her primary physician's clinic has closed. The first thing on his mind is the experience he had at Vanderbilt Health Clinic at Walgreens. And he returns.