Who wants them?
A dental appointment cancelled is an opportunity lost.
A cancelled dental appointment is the loss of an opportunity of healing disease in somebody’s mouth.
Even if the appointment is rescheduled to a later date, that disease and infection will be worse at the later date.
There is no benefit for a patient to be cancelling a dental appointment.
It is our duty as health care professionals to do everything possible within our powers to ensure that the patient completes the necessary dental treatment within the time frame that is recommended.
If the patient delays the treatment we have let the patient down by failing to communicate the intended message.
It is our fault that the patient cancels.
They cancel because we have not created in their mind a compelling enough reason for the patient to return.
We have failed to elicit sufficient urgency and concern in the patients’ mind.
This is our fault.
The patient may have left confused or unclear about their next step.
Here’s what needs to happen:
At the completion of each appointment, or at the completion of each phone call to the dental office, the treatment appointed patient must understand the following three things CLEARLY.
If the patient fails to grasp these three things, then there is every likelihood that the patient could cancel their appointment for treatment.
And that is not a good result for the patient.
Because the decay does not disappear on its own. And nor does the periodontal disease disappear for that matter….
The patient must understand exactly what treatment they will be having at their next visit to the Dental Office.
The patient must understand implicitly which teeth are to be treated, what is wrong with them and what that treatment will be.
The patient must understand the recommended time frame or urgency needed for the remaining treatment to be completed.
It is the Dentist’s duty to inform the patient he is seeing when exactly he next wants to that patient to return.
If it is a new patient calling the dental practice, or clerical team taking the incoming call also need to let the patient know of the urgency required to find out EXACTLY what needs to be done next.
The Dentist’s role is to create urgency for the treatment as opposed to creating a *Lack of Urgency* in the Patient’s mind. Creating urgency assists the Front Office team members in securing the next appointment for the Patient.
The patient needs to understand exactly what will happen if the next treatment is not carried out.
The Dentist must inform the patient of the consequences if treatment is not carried out. The patient must understand that taking action is imperative for them.
And that delaying action will be harmful to them.
When your patients understand these three clear messages we are telling them then their attendance compliance dramatically increases.
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The Ultimate Patient Experience is a simple to build complete Customer Service system in itself that I developed that allowed me to create an extraordinary dental office in an ordinary Sydney suburb. If you’d like to know more, ask me about my free special report.
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