Clients versus customers; after 4 years in business I realized I had virtually no clients and only a few reliable customers. Is it the economy, is it the nature of my business, or is it ME? Have you ever thought you had something and found out you didn’t, or considered someone in a certain status only to find out the position you put them in was not proper/applicable/deserved? BOOM! I imagine you have heard a person who you are close to say, “oh ___ is my friend, or my friend ____.” Then there are the patients, caught somewhere in between the four.
There some areas in the world of advertising and commercialization that should remain untouched. I feel like the medical profession is one of those areas. During our lifetimes we have seen the family doctor evolve. Doctor has transformed from “the kindly, miracle bearing cure-all” to “the stone faced take-a-number/game-of-chance operator”. Don’t be mad at him; we have done this to him, and by “we” I mean society.
What does it take to open up/start up a business? Well of course it depends on the nature of your business. Yet, when you look at a young doctor starting out, there are considerations that must be taken into account. This new fresh physician has student loans (in most cases) that remind you of the National Debt. Everyday these people take lives into their hands with a perpetual monkey-on-their-backs, and we wonder why their bedside-manner is lacking. Then there are the realities of insurance, insurance that they cannot afford and cannot practice without.
If you are fortunate enough to have insurance you may have an HMO plan. This may have been a choice or the only option your employer offered you, but in numerous cases HMO demonstrates and should stand for Health Maintenance Oppressor. Everyone is given the impression they are getting something; the patient has lower cost reliable medical treatment available, the doctors have built-in patients, but they neglected to tell you about the part that you sell your soul to the devil for these “benefits”. The patient is locked into the types and amount of treatment the PLAN feels is acceptable. The doctor is faced with quotas and time restrictions on the care given.
The other type plans may offer more freedom, but they cost you in time and research. Time that you should invest in finding out who this doctor is; where the degree(s) was/were obtained, if there are significant complaints or malpractice suits pending or settled, and still no guarantees or even a promise that the care you receive will be up-to-par.
What these two sited plans do have in common is the power of persuasion facilitated through advertising. Depending on how much spending power you have this power is virtually endless. There can be a picture painted that would convince the strongest skeptic “_____ is the way to go”.
Plastic surgeons were once looked upon as the bastard child of the medical profession; they had this reputation because of the stigma attached to elected surgery, and they were among the first in the field of medicine to advertise. Pharmaceutical companies have us convinced that we are qualified to suggest a certain medication to our doctors! How, through the media. If I knew what was wrong with me and/or what medications I should be taking, there would be no need for the physician!!!
Now we have the doctor, pharmaceutical company, and/or plan that can afford to make themselves look good in the media, but fail to deliver what they promise or show on television/or ads, in reality. Who suffers?
We must all be more aware, educated, and informed when it comes to our health and well-being. This is merely a carry-over from how busy and complicated our lives are now. However, it all goes back to the grass roots concepts of this piece. You really don’t know who or what you are dealing with, until you discover who or what they think of you.