Maintaining Patient Loyalty in Women’s Services

Premier Pulse     November 2023

1760488761By Lyndsey Pittman, service line director of cardiology and women's service lines, Premier Health, and William Andrew, MD, system provider leader, women’s services, Premier Health

Building and maintaining consumer loyalty is a key priority across all service lines; however, it has become even more crucial in Women’s Services. As birth rates across the state and within the region continue to decline year over year, maintaining current patient panels within our physician practices has the potential to result in a loss of market share. The decision to close the birthing unit at Miami Valley Hospital South certainly came with a risk of losing patients. This is a metric we have monitored closely since the closure, and we are proud to report no decline in deliveries. In fact, there has been growth post-closure. Growing volume and market share during a time of disruptive change within the market should be celebrated!  This is no doubt attributable to the relationships our local physician practices have built with their patients. While patients may have preferred to deliver in a smaller hospital, closer to home, they trust the physicians who care for them and value the quality comprehensive program that continues to differentiate Miami Valley Hospital's main campus. We asked Melissa Merritt, system vice president of operations for women’s health, Premier Health, what she thought the key component was that drives our consumer loyalty.  Her answer echoed these sentiments, “We know the work done to improve our patient experience in the PPN OB/GYN offices is directly related to why our patients have remained loyal in times of change.”

As we look forward, a key strategy in the near term for Women’s Services will be service enhancements.  Through our hospitals and physician offices, Premier offers a comprehensive care model for women’s health. It can, however, be fragmented and difficult to navigate. Making it easier for patients with certain diagnoses to move through our systems with ease will further strengthen our brand loyalty. We will also build strategies around other areas of focus that are important to our providers, including mental health, menopause, and medical weight management. 

Women are the decision-makers in health care, and the experience they have during pregnancy will be at the forefront when making choices on where to receive care across their lifespan.

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