As we mentioned earlier this week, with COVID-19 and the closure of aesthetic practices around the country, practitioners are leaning towards offering virtual options to patients. We decided to put together some of the best tips on hosting a successful video conference with your clients.
The most practical use for video conferencing at this time would be for consultations for new and existing clients. But you could potentially use video conferencing for follow-ups on procedures and treatments. You’ll want to send all paperwork and any other necessary forms to the patient prior to the call so you can be prepared to dive right in.
Before you start offering virtual consultations, you will need to ensure you have the proper equipment such as a stable internet connection, computer or phone with a microphone and camera or a headset, and webcam, etc. You’ll want to use the equipment you are most comfortable with and that produces the best quality. Do a trial run, to make sure everything is working properly and you know how to work everything.
The next step is to choose a platform. You can use HIPAA approved platforms like Symplast, Klara, and even Zoom for Healthcare (Zoom’s HIPAA-compliant offering). However, during COVID-19, the Department of Health and Human Services is waiving any potential HIPAA violations for good faith use of telemedicine. Either way, you want to ensure you are taking video calls in a private space. You’ll also want to make sure patients can access the platforms and tools you are using. You may have to make adjustments based on the client and their abilities.
You’ll want to encourage your patient to find a space with good lighting but also a private and comfortable space as well. Whether that’s by a window, or in a private room with good overhead lighting. You may want to have the patient send you photos ahead of time as well so you can make notes and annotate the photos to illustrate key points.
While on the call, you’ll want to use good body language, sit up straight, dress as you normally would, smile and use friendly hand gestures. You want to make your patients feel as comfortable as possible.
Above all, have patience during this time (with yourself and your client). Many people have never used video conferencing technologies before and it can take a bit longer.