By Steve Jones, Director of Medicrew and Nurse Practitioner.
It’s Sunday morning and you’ve had a nasty incident with a hammer. What do you do?
Rather than drive to the nearest Emergency Department, or attempt to call while your toddler wails in the background, you do a quick search on the HealthEngine app and find that Medicrew Buderim has available appointments. You let out a sigh of relief and thank technology for making life that little bit easier.
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Back to the beginning
When Medicrew Buderim first opened its doors in December of 2016, we had a novel and relatively untested business model. We also had a grand total of zero patients in the database.
Our clinic was one of the first in Australia to utilise Nurse Practitioners in the primary care setting (certainly the first on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland). We were testing uncharted territory and were pretty nervous as most people were unfamiliar with the Nurse Practitioner role.
We needed to show people that this was a good healthcare model, centred around patient care.
Competing with established Medical Centres
With a medical centre directly across the car park, and four other centres in close proximity, our challenge was to not only let people know we were open, but attract new patients through the door.
We turned to HealthEngine as our preferred online booking platform. Today, with over 9000 unique patients on our books, it’s safe to say we haven’t looked back.
How we made it easy for patients to find us
When it comes to our success, online visibility has been the key.
We put a lot of energy into making sure we are visible on Google searches and HealthEngine boosts our online presence exponentially. Thanks to HealthEngine, patients can easily find us and make their appointment without much fuss.
It’s easy for them, it’s easy for us.
With tools that help patients and doctors to connect, and special booking technology that shows exactly when doctors have availability, patients have the ability to book an appointment right on the spot. Potential patients can make an appointment online with their practitioner of choice, even for the same day.
Creating convenience for both patient and practice
Our patients find the intuitive HealthEngine booking system easy to use, making it a non-threatening task. It’s available to patients any time of the day or night making it a very convenient service that patients genuinely appreciate.
Our receptionists at Medicrew Buderim also appreciate that patients can make their own appointment with their chosen practitioner at a time that works for them. With fewer phone calls, practice staff are able to offer a more personalized service at reception which engages our patients and encourages their return.
HealthEngine brings new patients to the practice every week ― and it’s more than just sorry DIY-ers on Sunday mornings. It’s patients of all ages with a range of needs that only a general practice sees.
Since turning to HealthEngine as our preferred online booking platform, we’ve managed to grow our patient base from zero to over 9000 unique patients.
We’ve received over 1400 new patients from HealthEngine in the last 12 months, with total bookings increasing by an average of 35% every quarter.
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Hard work pays off
We were absolutely thrilled to be recognised nationally for our hard work and innovation when Medicrew Buderim was awarded AGPAL’s Small General Practice of the Year at a gala affair in May!
Our business has grown so much and people are recognising the virtues of our collaborative Nurse Practitioner / General Practitioner model. In less than two years, we’ve grown our patient base to a level that others would envy and we’re regularly recruiting new practitioners to cope with the demand.
Advice for other practices starting out
Believe in your business model and stay focused, even in the face of adversity. Invest in your marketing strategy, particularly in the online realm as this is one of the key ingredients to success in today’s world. It’s unlikely we would have achieved the gains we’ve had without the help of HealthEngine – it improves our online presence beyond measure and is very convenient for both patients and practices alike.
Steve Jones qualified as a Nurse Practitioner in 2012 after having been a Registered Nurse in NSW and QLD for more than 20 years. He also holds a Graduate Diploma in Critical Care and a Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety. Recognising the potential to use his skills in the primary care environment, Steve partnered with an Emergency Physician and a Business Specialist to found Medicrew Medical Centres. He has enjoyed the role, as have his patients, with his Medicrew Buderim centre recently being awarded the AGPAL “Small General Practice of the Year”.
The HealthEngine Products Medicrew Buderim utilise include:
1 – Featured Listing
4 – Patient Match