Run This Report – It's Critical!
Dr. Jim Carrigan – Case Study #221
Your dental management software program provides you with numerous reports. This article is to teach you about one report that can make or break your Hygiene Department, which in turn, curtails the growth of your practice. This report is called the Past Due Recall Report. If you have seen this report in the past 30 days, good for you! If you haven’t, then you need to. Dr. Carrigan had never seen this report, and he was concerned because the number of new patients coming into his general family practice dropped from 35 down to 21 in one month. What he discovered was that his practice was the revolving door- new patients were coming in the top, and existing patients were dropping out the bottom.
Let’s take a look at Dr. Carrigan’s hygiene statistics:
Pre-appointing all Patients
What has just happened? Mrs. Jones now has an appointment six months from now that she probably is going to cancel, or worse, not appear and fail to cancel. Five months from now, there is a patient that wants an appointment soon but there is no place to put them, since the schedule is full with patients that scheduled six months ago, including Mrs. Jones, who said that she wasn’t sure what her schedule was. Statistically, about one-fourth to one-third of all patients that pre-schedule will either cancel or not show for their appointment! That’s 2-4 patients per day per hygienist. The problem is, you don’t know which ones it will be until you call the day before or they don’t arrive at all. At the same time – it isn’t the patients’ fault when they plainly tell you that they don’t know what their schedule will be six months from now.
The Solution: Don’t schedule those patients! Suzie would respond with, “Mrs. Jones, that is perfectly fine. I understand. The envelope that you addressed to yourself in the hygiene room will be mailed to you about a month before you are due. You can call us then and schedule your appointment at a time that is convenient for you.”
The 12-month Past Due Recall Report
Please run your Past Due Recall Report for the past 12 months. You may find that you don’t need more new patients, you just need a system to retain the ones that you already have!
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