19 Creative Ways to Increase Patient Volume (with Examples)

19 Creative Ways to Increase Patient Volume (with Examples)

Content Overview

19 Creative Ways to Increase Patient Volume (with Examples)

Ever feel like your medical practice is an undiscovered gem in the landscape of healthcare? We get it. Getting patients through the door isn’t just a numbers game; it’s an art form. But what if we told you there’s a world beyond traditional strategies — a set of innovative tactics to reliably increase your patient volume? Luckily, there is!

In this article, you will learn:

  • Strategies that draw patients into your practice
  • Innovative methods to turn your facility into a healthcare hub
  • Techniques for getting appointment slots booked in record time
  • Creative approaches to broaden your patient base

P.S., if you want to help more patients, you’ll want to know about DocResponse. It’s not just software; it’s your practice’s new secret weapon — DocResponse equips you with tools to boost your patient volume, like digital check-in and telemedicine, with at least 2 more patients seen per day.

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Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

Understanding Patient Volume in Healthcare

Before we get to the heart of the matter, let’s understand it first:

  • Patient volume is the lifeblood of any healthcare facility. It’s not just about the numbers; it’s the heartbeat of your practice. In simple terms, patient volume refers to the quantity of patients your facility serves over a given period.
  • Why is it important? Well, a steady flow of patients means a profitable practice, operational efficiency, and ultimately potential enhancement of the level of care you provide.

Calculating Patient Volume and Clinic Capacity

Now, let’s crunch some numbers.

Calculating patient volume and clinic capacity is a strategic dance that ensures you’re not overwhelmed or underutilized. Consider factors like appointment duration, provider availability, and the number of operating hours. Then use the formula below:

Patient Volume = (Number of Patients Seen) / (Time Period)

To calculate clinic capacity, simply use this formula:

Clinic Capacity = (Number of Providers) × (Number of Operating Hours) × (Appointments per Hour)

This calculation ensures you’re not only keeping the lights on, but also maximizing your facility’s potential. Now that you know how to use the numbers to your advantage, Let’s dive in.


The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

19 Practical Ways to Skyrocket Patient Volume

You’ve mastered the medical craft, but what about the art of drawing patients into your medical or dental practice? It’s time to break free from the mundane and explore inventive strategies for increasing patient volume.

1. Harness the Power of Social Proof

  • Encourage satisfied patients not just to share testimonials but also to narrate specific success stories. Real-life examples resonate with potential patients.
  • Feature a monthly “Patient of the Month” story on your website, highlighting unique cases and treatment success.
  • Consider creating a dedicated section on your website or social media platforms showcasing patient stories with before-and-after scenarios.

Pro tip: With healthcare reputation management tools like DocResponse, post-visit texts are automatically sent to your patients for them to leave a review. If it’s above 4 stars, they can be published automatically on your social media platforms. If it’s a lower rating, get notified immediately and improve for next time.

2. Host Health Workshops

  • Make your workshops interactive. Incorporate Q&A sessions or live demonstrations to actively engage participants.
  • Host a monthly live-streamed workshop focusing on prevalent health issues and invite guest speakers or local experts.
  • Provide attendees with take-home materials summarizing the workshop’s key points, reinforcing your expertise even after they leave.

3. Revamp Your Waiting Room

  • Personalize the waiting room experience. Consider incorporating health-related infographics or a digital display featuring health tips and updates.
  • Introduce a ‘Wellness Corner’ in your waiting room, offering health magazines, wellness tips, and calming music to enhance the patient experience.
  • Use DocResponse’s digital check-in kiosk for efficiency and as an interactive tool to educate patients during their wait.

4. Leverage Local SEO Magic

  • Optimize your clinic’s content with specific local keywords and regularly update it with relevant information to stay current and prominent in local searches.
  • This may seem obvious, but many medical practices miss out on countless local searches because patients simply cannot find them online.
  • Use tools like Google My Business Insights to track the performance of your profile and adjust strategies accordingly.

5. Create Engaging Educational Content

  • Dive deep into topics. Create comprehensive guides, infographics, or video series that genuinely add value to your audience.
  • For Example: Develop an animated video series on YouTube explaining common health conditions in a simple, engaging format.
  • Leverage social media platforms to share bite-sized health tips regularly, linking back to your in-depth content for more in-depth information.

6. Partner with Local Businesses

  • Craft exclusive partnerships. Offer local businesses discounted healthcare packages for their employees, creating a mutually beneficial relationship.
  • Offer a ‘Health Day’ package to local businesses, where their employees receive free basic health screenings and wellness coaching sessions.
  • Collaborate on joint events, such as health and wellness fairs, to enhance visibility in the community.

7. Utilize Telemedicine

  • Provide a user-friendly guide on your website explaining how patients can seamlessly access and benefit from your telemedicine services.
  • This doesn’t need to be complex! Imagine this: a patient logs in for a telemedicine session and is guided through a virtual health assessment before connecting with the doctor.
  • Actionable Insight: Consider offering a free trial or discounted initial telemedicine consultations to encourage adoption.

DocResponse telemedicine page

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

8. Get Creative with Patient Referral Programs

  • Offer a tiered referral program where patients unlock different rewards or services based on the number of referrals they make.
  • Personalize incentives. Tailor referral rewards based on your patients’ preferences, ensuring they feel genuinely appreciated.
  • Regularly communicate the success stories of patients who were referred to your practice, emphasizing the positive outcomes.

9. Use Online Scheduling Tools

  • Remind patients of their appointments by integrating automated appointment reminders through email or SMS. This minimizes no-shows and optimizes appointment slots.
  • Implement a scheduling tool like Calendly or DocResponse, which allows patients to book and manage their appointments online with ease.
  • Highlight the convenience of online scheduling in your marketing materials, emphasizing the time-saving aspect for patients.

Pro tip: If you make it easy to book an appointment with you, you are going to naturally increase patient volume. Try DocResponse’s patient scheduling software, where you can let patients book at a time that works for them, send automated reminders, and review patient and case details all under one roof for a seamless experience.

10. Embrace Community Events

  • Go beyond booth setups. Host mini-events or health check-up stations, creating memorable interactions with potential patients, and ultimately resulting in higher patient volumes.
  • Sponsor a local sports event and offer first-aid services, showcasing your clinic’s commitment to the community.
  • Distribute informational materials about your practice, ensuring attendees leave with something tangible.

11. Optimize Your “Google Business” Profile

  • Regularly update your profile with upcoming events, new services, or any changes within your practice to keep information fresh.
  • Add FAQs to your Google Business profile to answer common queries proactively.
  • Encourage satisfied patients to leave positive reviews directly on your “Google My Business” page.

12. Run Targeted Social Media Ads

  • A/B test different ad creatives and targeting options to identify the most effective combinations for reaching your ideal patient demographic and increasing patient traffic.
  • Use geo-targeting for your ads to focus on potential patients in your vicinity.
  • Use the analytics provided by social media platforms to refine your ad strategy over time.

13. Utilize Patient-Centric Reputation Management

  • Respond promptly to both positive and negative reviews, showcasing your commitment to patient satisfaction and addressing concerns publicly. Tools like DocResponse’s Reputation Management can help you with this process.
  • Develop a policy for handling online feedback, ensuring a consistent and professional approach across all platforms.
  • Actionable Insight: Integrate patient feedback surveys into your post-appointment follow-up process to gather insights continuously.

DocResponse reputation management

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

14. Tap into the Power of Email Marketing

  • Research shows that revenue gained by email marketing is increasing by billions of dollars annually. Segment your email list based on patient preferences or demographics to send targeted and relevant content.
  • Create a monthly newsletter featuring health tips, clinic updates, and patient success stories.
  • Incorporate visually appealing email templates and subject lines to increase open rates.

15. Host Health Challenges

  • Collaborate with local fitness trainers or nutritionists for added expertise and credibility in your health challenges.
  • Launch a 30-day wellness challenge with daily tips and a supportive online community.
  • Create a dedicated online community or forum where participants can share their progress and experiences.

16. Collaborate with Influencers

  • Look for influencers with genuine connections to the local community to maximize the impact of their endorsement.
  • Partner with a well-known local athlete or fitness influencer to promote a healthy lifestyle campaign.
  • Consider co-hosting events or giveaways with influencers, creating a buzz around your practice.

17. Gamify the Patient Experience

  • Introduce a loyalty program with gamified elements. Reward patients for consistent engagement and participation in health challenges.
  • Create a points system where patients earn rewards for regular check-ups, referrals, and participating in health education sessions.

18. Invest in Patient Education Materials

  • Partner with local schools or community centers to distribute educational materials, expanding your reach beyond your immediate patient base.
  • Develop age-specific health education materials for different segments like children, teens, and seniors.
  • Regularly update materials to reflect the latest health guidelines and advancements.

19. Harness the Power of Online Reviews

  • Showcase positive reviews on your website and promotional materials. Consider creating a designated space where patients can share their experiences.
  • Implement a “Review Highlight” feature in your monthly newsletter, where a standout patient review is showcased, perhaps along with a brief thank-you note or comment from the clinic.
  • Actionable Insight: Use DocResponse to seamlessly integrate review requests into your patient interactions, ensuring a continuous influx of authentic testimonials. Positive online reviews build trust and credibility.

DocResponse scheduling

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

Bonus Tips for Elevating Your Practice

1. Use Real-Time Locating Systems (RTLS) in Hospitals

Precision is paramount for any healthcare provider. Enter Real-Time Locating Systems (RTLS), the innovation transforming patient flow. Here’s why they’re game-changers:

  • They Boost Efficiency: RTLS in hospitals ensures real-time visibility, preventing bottlenecks and optimizing patient movement.
  • They Enhance Patient Experience: Swift navigation reduces wait times, creating a seamless and positive experience, improving overall quality.
  • They Strategically Allocate Resources: They help to identify trends and allocate resources effectively, ensuring staff is where they’re needed most.

2. Improve Patient Flow in Outpatient Clinics

Let’s explore a few techniques to elevate patient flow in outpatient clinics.

  • Use Patient Flow Diagrams: Visualize patient movement from arrival to departure, identifying potential obstacles.
  • Schedule Appointments Strategically: Optimize appointment slots, ensuring a steady and manageable patient influx.
  • Streamline Check-Ins: Utilize technology, like DocResponse’s digital check-in, for a hassle-free start to the patient journey.

3. Utilize Tracking Tools to Enhance Patient Flow in Hospitals

You can’t improve what you don’t measure, so here’s how you can track your way to top-notch patient flow. Here’s how:

  • Get Real-Time Insights: Utilize tracking tools for instant data on patient movement, allowing swift adjustments.
  • Optimize Emergency Response: In critical situations, tracking tools ensure a prompt and organized response.
  • Seamlessly Coordinate Staff: Efficiently direct staff with real-time information, preventing chaos.

Enhancing Patient Care and Services

Perhaps the number one strategy to increase patient volume is to offer excellent service to your existing patients. Providing stellar patient care shouldn’t be a side quest — it’s the backbone of success. Good patient care results in benefits such as:

  • Patient Attraction and Retention: Word of mouth marketing is more powerful than you might think. Exceptional care not only brings in new patients but keeps them coming back.
  • Building Trust and Credibility: Patients want to feel heard and understood. Outstanding care builds trust, making your practice a reliable healthcare haven.
  • Positive Patient Experiences: Beyond medical expertise, it’s the little things that matter. A friendly face, timely communication, and a caring touch elevate the patient experience.
  • Competitive Edge in Healthcare: In a sea of choices, exceptional care sets you apart. It becomes your unique selling point, attracting patients seeking not just treatment but a compassionate journey.
  • Long-Term Health Partnerships: Patients aren’t just numbers; they’re long-term partners in their health journey. Exceptional care cements these partnerships, ensuring continuity in healthcare relationships.

Enhancing Patient Care and Services

Improving Patient Flow in Emergency Departments

Emergency departments (EDs) are the front lines of healthcare, and optimizing patient flow is crucial. Let’s explore innovative methods to ensure a seamless experience during critical moments:

1. Triage Optimization:

  • Implement advanced triage systems to quickly assess and prioritize patients based on severity. Use algorithms to evaluate patients’ symptoms and medical history for a more precise triage process.
  • Utilize technology, like real-time locating systems (RTLS), to track and manage patient movement through the triage process. This can include patient-worn tags that update their location and status in real-time on a central monitor.
  • Actionable Insight: Introduce AI-based symptom checkers that patients can use upon arrival, helping to streamline the triage process by providing preliminary assessment data to healthcare professionals.

2. Fast-Track Systems for Minor Cases:

  • Introduce a fast-track system for minor injuries or illnesses to expedite their treatment. Designate specific treatment areas or lanes for these cases to avoid clogging the main treatment flow.
  • Ensure dedicated staff and resources for swift assessment and care. Train specific teams to handle common minor ailments with efficiency and speed.
  • Actionable Insight: Implement a pre-triage questionnaire through an app or kiosk, allowing minor cases to be fast-tracked even before they interact with a healthcare professional.

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

3. Telemedicine:

  • Integrate telemedicine services for preliminary assessments, reducing unnecessary in-person visits. Use these virtual platforms for initial consultations and triage.

Integrate telemedicine services

  • Provide virtual consultations to determine the urgency of the patient’s condition. This can help in allocating resources more efficiently for those who need immediate physical attention.
  • Actionable Insight: Expand telemedicine services to include follow-up appointments, thereby reducing congestion in the emergency department for non-urgent cases.

4. Streamlined Registration Processes:

  • Utilize digital registration and check-in systems to minimize paperwork and accelerate the initial processes. Include features like QR code scanning for quick access to patient records.


  • Ensure seamless coordination between registration, triage, and the treatment area. Utilize integrated digital systems that communicate patient data across different departments instantaneously.
  • Actionable Insight: Offer pre-arrival online registration for planned visits or repeat patients to further reduce waiting time and administrative procedures.

5. Patient Flow Command Center:

  • Establish a central command center to monitor patient movement in real time. Use advanced software to visualize patient flow and identify congestion points.
  • Use data analytics to identify bottlenecks and deploy resources where they are needed most. Analyze historical data to predict peak times and prepare accordingly.
  • Actionable Insight: Implement a digital dashboard for real-time updates on bed availability, staff allocation, and patient status updates.

6. Collaborative Care Teams:

  • Foster collaboration among multidisciplinary care teams to ensure swift decision-making. Regularly hold interdisciplinary meetings to discuss patient care strategies.
  • Enable efficient communication channels for quick coordination between healthcare professionals. Use secure messaging apps and digital platforms for instant communication.
  • Actionable Insight: Develop a role-specific alert system to notify relevant team members when their expertise is required, optimizing the care process.

7. Efficient Laboratory and Imaging Services:

  • Optimize laboratory and imaging workflows for rapid results. Prioritize emergency department tests and use automated systems to expedite processing.
  • Implement point-of-care testing when feasible to reduce wait times. Use portable devices for immediate results in critical situations.
  • Actionable Insight: Coordinate closely with lab and imaging staff to prioritize emergency cases and expedite turnaround times for critical results.

8. Clear Communication with Patients:

  • Keep patients informed about wait times and expected next steps. This increases patient satisfaction. Use automated systems to provide regular updates via text or digital displays.
  • Enhance communication channels through digital signage or patient portals. Provide real-time updates on treatment status and estimated waiting periods.
  • Actionable Insight: Use patient-centric apps like DocResponse to offer information on current status, expected wait times, and to send reminders about their condition or procedures.

9. Mobile Patient Monitoring:

  • Implement mobile monitoring solutions for stable patients, allowing them more flexibility. Utilize wearable technology for continuous monitoring of vital signs.
  • Free up beds for critical cases while maintaining a close eye on patients’ vital signs. Use remote monitoring to alert staff of any significant changes in a patient’s condition.
  • Actionable Insight: Explore telehealth options for home monitoring post-discharge, ensuring continuous care and reducing the likelihood of readmission.

10. Post-Discharge Follow-Up Procedures:

  • Establish efficient procedures for post-discharge follow-ups to prevent unnecessary return visits. Use automated systems to schedule and remind patients of follow-up appointments.
  • Provide clear instructions and resources for ongoing care. Develop comprehensive discharge plans that include digital resources, support groups, and accessible contact points for queries.
  • Actionable Insight: Use DocReposne to implement a virtual check-in system post-discharge, where patients can report their recovery progress and receive advice without needing a physical visit.

DocResponse post-appointment follow up

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

Enhancing OPD Services for Increased Patient Volume

The outpatient department (OPD) is the heartbeat of accessibility in healthcare. Let’s delve into strategic tips and techniques to revamp OPD services, accommodating a surge in patient volume:

1. Strategic Appointment Scheduling:

  • Implement online appointment scheduling to streamline the booking process, offering patients the convenience to book, reschedule, or cancel appointments 24/7.
  • Optimize appointment slots based on peak hours and provider availability, using predictive analytics to balance patient demand with staffing levels.
  • Actionable Insight: Develop a dynamic scheduling system that can adapt to real-time changes, such as cancellations or emergency cases, to optimize daily appointment allocation and reduce idle time for healthcare providers.

2. Digital Check-In Solutions:

  • Introduce digital check-in kiosks or mobile apps for a swift and paperless entry, significantly reducing patient wait times and administrative burden.
  • Enhance the patient experience from the moment they step through the door by providing an intuitive and user-friendly digital interface for check-in processes.
  • Actionable Insight: Continuously gather user feedback on digital check-in systems to refine their functionality and interface, ensuring they cater effectively to a diverse patient demographic.

3. Efficient Triage Systems:

  • As we’ve already discussed, you can use advanced triage systems to prioritize and manage patient influx effectively.
  • Ensure that the most urgent cases receive immediate attention, while efficiently directing less critical cases to appropriate care pathways.
  • Actionable Insight: Integrate a symptom assessment tool within your triage system that patients can access via mobile devices, providing preliminary information to triage staff before the patient arrives.

4. Telemedicine Integration:

  • Offer telemedicine services for follow-up consultations and routine check-ins, leveraging technology to provide continuous care without the need for physical visits.
  • Expand your reach beyond physical boundaries, catering to a broader patient base, including those in remote or underserved areas.
  • Actionable Insight: Implement a hybrid care model where telemedicine is seamlessly blended with in-person visits, allowing for flexible and personalized patient care plans.

5. Patient Education Initiatives:

  • Establish information stations to educate and encourage patients about self-care and preventive measures, using interactive tools and engaging content to enhance understanding.
  • Informed patients become partners in their own health journey, contributing to better health outcomes and more efficient use of healthcare resources.
  • Actionable Insight: Incorporate digital education platforms, like patient portals or apps, that provide tailored educational content based on each patient’s conditions and treatment plans.

6. Streamlined Prescription Refills:

  • Implement efficient systems for prescription refills, utilizing e-prescription services to automate the process and reduce wait times.
  • Utilize digital platforms for prescription renewals and medication management, offering patients convenient access to their prescription histories and refill requests.
  • Actionable Insight: Integrate prescription management with patient’s electronic health records (EHRs) and pharmacy systems to ensure accurate and timely medication dispensing.

7. Optimized Waiting Room Design:

  • Craft a waiting area that is both comfortable and strategically organized, incorporating elements like comfortable seating, calming decor, and clear signage.
  • Leverage patient flow diagrams to identify and eliminate potential bottlenecks, ensuring a smooth and efficient process for moving patients through the waiting area.
  • Actionable Insight: Use real-time occupancy data to manage waiting room space efficiently, adjusting seating arrangements and patient flow to maintain a comfortable and safe environment.

8. Effective Staff Training:

  • Train staff to handle increased patient volume efficiently, focusing on skills in rapid assessment, patient communication, and use of digital tools.
  • Foster a culture of patient-centric care and effective communication, emphasizing empathy, active listening, and clear, jargon-free communication.
  • Actionable Insight: Implement ongoing training programs that include scenario-based learning and real-time feedback, ensuring staff are equipped to handle a variety of patient needs and situations.

9. Robust Communication Channels:

  • Enhance communication with patients through SMS, email, or mobile apps, providing timely and personalized updates on appointments, wait times, and health tips.
  • Keep existing and new patients informed about appointment reminders, wait times, and follow-ups, using automated systems to ensure consistent communication.
  • Actionable Insight: Develop an integrated communication strategy that combines digital and human elements, ensuring patients receive the right information at the right time in the most appropriate format.

10. Data-Driven Decision Making:

  • Leverage data analytics to identify trends and areas for improvement, collecting data from various sources including patient feedback, appointment systems, and clinical outcomes.
  • Ensure that decisions are backed by real-time insights into patient flow and service utilization, using advanced analytics to forecast demand and optimize resource allocation.
  • Actionable Insight: Create a multidisciplinary team dedicated to data analysis and continuous improvement, responsible for translating data insights into actionable strategies for enhancing OPD efficiency and patient satisfaction.

board, chalk, feedback

Increase Patient Volume Today With DocResponse

Congratulations, healthcare trailblazer! You’ve just unlocked a treasure trove of strategies to skyrocket your patient volume and redefine success. Ready to transform your healthcare practice into a healthcare hub? Let’s recap the key takeaways:

  • Enhance Patient Engagement and Outreach: Utilize patient testimonials, interactive health workshops, and community involvement to create a lasting impact and extend reach.
  • Revamp Digital and Physical Spaces: Overhaul waiting rooms for comfort and education, optimize local SEO and Google Business profiles for visibility, and embrace telemedicine for convenience.
  • Leverage Digital Marketing and Reputation Management: Implement targeted social media advertising, email marketing, and patient-centric reputation management to strengthen your online presence.
  • Innovate with Incentives and Education: Develop patient referral programs, gamify the patient experience with rewards, and distribute educational materials to establish yourself as a health expert.

Increase Patient Volume Today With DocResponse

The #1 Patient Management Software

Help more people in less time with faster patient intake, easy appointment scheduling, and smarter doctor-patient communication with the #1 practice management software.

Ready to revolutionize patient management? Enter DocResponse – your ally in efficiency and empowerment. With digital check-ins, seamless telemedicine, and reputation management, it’s a powerhouse tool for top medical practices who want less provider burnout and more patient empowerment. Schedule a demo today to see if it’s right for your clinic.

Dr. Tarek Fahl

Dr. Tarek Fahl

Dr. Tarek Fahl is an acclaimed orthopedic surgeon and CEO of DocResponse. Renowned for his expertise in sports medicine, focusing on advanced shoulder and knee treatments, he’s lauded as one of America’s Top Surgeons, merging medical proficiency with healthcare technology innovation.

Dr. Tarek Fahl

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