View these tips and script to prepare for building relationships with health care organizations and for encouraging them to adopt your services.
Preparing for the Call
- Ask your coworkers or partners if they know staff to contact at the health center
- Identify the names and titles of key staff to contact
- Research the health care organization’s website to gather key information
- Conduct a detailed review of the capacity and population served by the health care organization
Making the Call
- If contacting a clinic, reach out during off-peak hours, including Mondays, the first hour after the clinic opens, or the first hour after lunch
- Have a script ready prior to the call to help you remember key points to make when speaking with your contact
"Hello, [NAME OF PERSON ANSWERING THE PHONE], I’m [NAME], and I am with [NAME OF ORGANIZATION]. We are implementing a suite of preventive health programs to help [TARGET POPULATION] with [SPECIFIC SERVICE]. We’d like to schedule a time to come to your office and discuss how the program can benefit your patients and help you meet your quality improvement outcomes. May I please speak with [NAME OF YOUR CONTACT] or with the person who is working on quality improvement, patient-centered medical home, or clinical operations efforts?"
Note: If your contact is unavailable, leave a message and ask for a better time to call back. Chances are you will not be able to speak with the individual the first time you call. Some health care providers have set designated times for staff to return calls.
- When you get the appropriate contact on the phone, have a description of the program prepared and the specific ways it can benefit their organization. You may need to tailor this example to your services and outreach target:
"Thank you for taking my call. [NAME OF ORGANIZATION] is offering [evidence-based workshops] in the community that are proven to help older adults and adults with disabilities [self-manage symptoms of their chronic disease]. I would like to assist you in making them available to your patients and also to establish your facility as a primary referral site for Medicare beneficiaries, who will be recruited to participate in the program. This could increase the number of Medicare consumers at your facility and has the potential to help your clinic meet patient center medical home and quality improvement requirements. May I set up a time to visit your clinic to share more about how these workshops can benefit your current patient population, as well as adults with chronic conditions in the community?"
- If yes:
"Great! What day and time work best for you? I look forward to meeting you."
- If no:
"Would you like me to send you information about the program to review? Because many
health care providers are seeking ways to activate patients and improve their self-management skills, you might be interested in learning about this program."
- If the contact would like more information:
"Would you like me to email or mail the information to you? To whom should I address the correspondence? I will follow up with you in a few days to see if you have any questions. Thank you for your time and enjoy the rest of your day."
- If the contact prefers not to receive information:
"I appreciate your taking the time to talk with me today. In case you have an interest later, here is my contact information [LEAVE YOUR CONTACT INFORMATION]. Feel free to get in touch with me at any time if your circumstances change. Thank you again, and enjoy your day."
This project was supported in part by grant number 90CR2001-01-00 from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.