Use of name badges benefits patients

January 10, 2013

Your patients will interact with many of your practice's employees. Discover how you can help your patients identify who they spoke with.

Q: I require staff members to introduce themselves to the patients they deal with. Many patients don’t seem to recall with whom they spoke, however, which causes frustration and confusion. Can I do anything else to help my patients better remember who cared for them during their office visit?

A: Everyone in the practice, including physicians, should wear a name badge.

In fact, healthcare providers in some states are required by law to wear name badges. Name badges help patients and other visitors know with whom they are dealing. They can save embarrassment when names are forgotten, too.

Some employees resist wearing a name badge. If this happens at your practice, try to find out why. Then, work on the reasons-don’t just order your staff members to wear them.

To ease compliance, employee name badges should be easy to affix to clothing without damaging it; some employees prefer a clip or magnetic device to a pin. And the badge should carry whatever name the employee wishes to be called (even an alias is acceptable). Physicians’ names can be sewn on the coat or clipped to the pocket. Wearing a name badge should not be optional for anyone, however.

The author is with Practice Performance Group, La Jolla, California, and is a Medical Economics editoriial constulatn. Follow us at www.twitter.com/MedEconomics and like us at www.facebook.com/MedicalEconomics.