A doctor’s bedside manner is more than how he or she relates to patients. A doctor’s office and waiting room area are an extension of this manner. Patients come from all walks of life and have a variety of interests. A thoughtful doctor – and thoughtful medical practice management professional – will make sure that there is a diverse selection of reading material for patients to enjoy and relax with while waiting to see the doctor.
Depending upon how much you have to work with in your budget, you may need to be selective about which periodicals you choose to populate your practice magazine racks. Here are a few suggestions that may help you keep your patients entertained, no matter what their interests may be.
One of the most respected of all print publications, Time delivers in-depth coverage of the latest national and international news in the spheres of politics, science, technology, sports, entertainment and the humanities. Time is published weekly, ensuring that there is a steady stream of fresh reading materials for patients to peruse while they wait.
2. Highlights for Children
Whether you’re a general practitioner or a pediatrician, it’s inevitable that you will have kids in your waiting room. It’s important to keep your littlest patients entertained. Highlights for Children is appropriate for children ages 3-12 and offers easy-to-read articles about animals, science and geography, plus fun projects, jokes, comics and more. (Who doesn’t remember reading Goofus and Gallant?!)
Regardless of how welcoming and comfortable your office may be, most patients would rather be elsewhere. Afford them a moment of escapism by offering them a glimpse destinations from around the world – and Stateside, too – with Afar magazine. Beautiful photography complements intriguing articles on the scenery, lifestyle and food from regions around the globe.
4. Entertainment Weekly
For a little bit of light reading about what’s going on in the worlds of film, television and music, Entertainment Weekly fits the bill. From news to reviews, this weekly publication offers articles about the actors, directors, writers and musicians behind popular entertainment. The easy-to-digest format of the articles makes for relaxing reading while waiting. Plus, the weekly format of the magazine ensures fresh reading material for patients to enjoy.
5. Sports Illustrated
Considered the definitive weekly sports magazine, Sports Illustrated (affectionately known as “SI” to its 23 million-strong readership) not only covers major league team sports such as football, baseball, basketball and hockey, but it devotes regular sections to boxing, horseracing, tennis and collegiate sports as well.
By subscribing to a few select magazines, you’ll not only be able to keep a large cross section of patients entertained, but you’ll also be able to reinvest some of your budget in other items (like treat bags for young patients or coffee for your waiting area) that will make your patients feel more at home. Don’t forget to keep your magazines updated and discard (or recycle) older issues to give patients current material to enjoy.