One of the most common remarks I hear from my guys is the number of patients they see in the NHS. Such comments are normally followed by the opposite when discussing a private practice.
They want to see MORE patients.
This, for me, confirms the cultural difference between the public and private sector.
In the NHS, a consultant surgeon does not have to do much in order for patients to be delivered to them.
In the private sector the opposite applies.
In the private sector a consultant surgeon, MUST do everything he or she can to attract a patient.
He must ensure it is known his practice is there.
First of all however he must comprehensively understand WHY a patient is choosing to go private. It is not just the case of a patient wanting to be seen private because he or she has medical insurance. It is understanding WHY the patient has medical insurance.
More likely it is because the private patient wishes to be seen quicker.
Even so, a consultant surgeon MUST engage in marketing of whatever description.
Therefore a marketing plan, is an integral part of a private consultant surgeon’s business plan.
And therein lies the reference to the cultural difference between an NHS practise and a private practice.
A Private Practice is a business.
In a NHS practice, patients will be delivered to the consultant surgeon.
In a private practise, this won’t happen. They must be attracted to the practice or more accurately to the business.
Note the use of the word BUSINESS. A private practice is a business.
This is not the time to discuss which marketing strategies work best for a private surgeon. This blog is concerned with highlighting the differences between the NHS and the private sector and therefore private consultant surgeon must have a marketing strategy.
Just has a consultant must have a robust infrastructure to support the business (secretarial support, invoicing, banking etc), it is equally as important to have a marketing strategy.
Look at it this way, if any business does not have a regular number of clients or patients then the business will not succeed.