How do you impress dental patients to stay with your dental practice and refer more of their friends and family? In an environment with stiffer competition and the potential for more corporate dentistry coming into the marketplace, how do you distinguish your dental practice?
One of the most effective ways to “wow” your dental patients is to run on time. It is so fundamental, yet one of the main reasons why patients leave your dental practice is because you keep them waiting. How then do you ensure that running behind is a rare occurrence instead of a somewhat regular problem?
First, you need to assess your on-time percentage. Dentists and teams typically have a very different perspective on whether the practice runs on time. Dentists are focused on patient care and they do not always know if the appointment runs on time, but the staff knows very well when the patient enters and leaves the operatory. By tracking this over the course of several weeks, you will have a good idea of how often you run behind.
Next, identify what causes you to run behind. The most common cause is an unrealistic amount of time allocated for the appointment. When a dental treatment is scheduled, you must also take into account time for exams as well as other procedures that overlap that appointment. In addition, it’s common to underestimate how much time is needed when you do multiple restorations at the same visit.
Finally, consider if your clinical team is being utilized appropriately. What can get delegated to the team to ensure the appointment ends on time? Can you assistants finish temporaries for crowns or patient education following a procedure?
Dental patients value you more when you run on schedule. Look closely at how you can fine-tune what you do to ensure that you consistently run on time.
Want to learn more about how Fluence’s dental practice consulting can help you add more new patients? Call us at 503-245-0766.