Faster patient processing for your practice

Getting patients in-and-out of your office as quickly as possible is a win-win scenario. Busy patients love it and the more patients you see the faster your practice grows.

How many of these efficiency practices are you taking advantage of at your dental practice?

Easy-to-follow directions

What’s the process like for a new patient to get from the parking lot to your reception desk? Are there sufficient and properly placed signs leading the way? Does your website provide information on the best places to park? Speaking of parking, is there enough available? Patients who have trouble getting to the check-in counter are routinely late for appointments, causing a bottleneck for everyone else.

Self check-in

Whether it’s via your website, a mobile phone app or an iPad in the office, giving patients the option to check themselves in provides a solid boost for patient flow, particularly on crowded days when your front office staff is busy.

An app also lets patients cancel appointments or inform reception that they’re running late, allowing you to see the next patient on the schedule immediately.

Delegate

It’s not always easy to give up control in your practice, but using time on tasks that could be completed by an employee is slowing patient flow. Ensure that you are fully staffed so that your time is allocated to completing dental procedures and not administrative work.

Clear patient communication

Being personable matters but it’s important to keep a tab on small talk once a patient is in the chair. Maintain focused patient communication regarding care and treatment options to avoid confusion.

  1. Inform patients of the problems they are facing in easy to understand terms.
  2. Explain how and why the problems came to be.
  3. Give them your treatment recommendations.
  4. Lay out the consequences of delaying or foregoing treatment.

Train staff to be consistent

Nothing slows down patient processing more than miscommunication. Work hard to avoid scenarios where you tell a patient one thing while the receptionist says another and the dental hygienist something else. Systems must be well defined and implemented with consistency.