Everyone always takes it personally when they get that email or call that a family is leaving the practice. It drove me nuts. I had to write a book about it. Here is a snippet that may help you from staying up all night:
After five years, as of this writing, I have to tell you that the most common reason people leave is money. I think it is very hard for them to admit that they can’t afford you or that they just don’t want to pay you anymore. To defend their own egos, they tend to highlight or make up other reasons and state that is why they left. You need to be aware of this before you read into some feedback and beat yourself up about it. Also, human nature will dictate that you will focus on the meanest and most unappreciative patient. Or the worst part of their feedback. I was guilty of that. Please don’t fall into that trap. To be honest, most patients are sad and apologetic when they decide to leave our office and commend us on how great we are. Don’t let the very few change your perspective and then doubt this model. The DPC model has so many great advantages over the fee-for-service model that there is no way the unhappy ones will be getting that type of service anywhere else. Even any weak spots we have, that we should still work on, are small compared to any other model out there.
So, to be clear, we don’t ignore what people tell us, but we have to keep it in perspective in order to feel good about what we’re doing. Honestly, our intentions are always good and we truly try to help people. All DPC docs I have met have great hearts and are altruistic. If you pay attention to just the ill-fitting patients, then they may sway you into doing things you don’t need to really do. And you know who those patients are. It’s the ones who you thought were happy, who now complain on the way out, that throws us all for a loop and give us pause. We should, and do, pay attention to their complaints and feedback.
For much more on this you can check out Slowing the Churn in Direct Primary Care (While Also Keeping Your Sanity).
Remember, most of the time it is them and not you.