Does Your Waiting Room Sometimes Look Like This – Empty?
If your waiting room is empty or half-filled, then you have too many exam rooms with this going on…
No Shows. Cancellations. Half-Filled Waiting Rooms. Rarely See A Patient More Than Once.
These are just some things plaguing practices right now.
Patient Retention is one of the most important things leading to a successful practice.
These are four simple strategies other practices are using to keep their patients long term!
#1: Retaining & Using Important Patient Information
Sometimes it can be assumed that this contact information for all of your patients is buried in a medical record, unused. Here are some helpful data points to obtain with every patient:
Keeping a list of every patient you have ever worked with is the best way to keeping them. They will want to feel their visit, every time, is personalized to them. Most medical record solutions will provide reports within their software to run “Patient Lists” to show this data including date last seen on all patients. Here is an example:
Best Contact Number for Patient
For the most part, this is a cell phone number for your patient. Text message reminders are very effective, and usually a preferred method of communication. At the very least, make sure each patient has an alternate number on file.
Email Address for Patient
The average person will check their emails on their phones more than 30 times a day! Sending reminders, updates or health tips via email to your patients can go a long way towards retaining your patients!
Patient’s Birth Date
Receiving a “Happy Birthday” from you can make your patients feel as though you really know them. Its a subtle reminder to them that the office cares and that you remember who they are.
Use all of this information to your advantage. If a patient came to you once, wouldn’t you like them to come back to see you again? Send them a birthday card. Send them reminders of their next visit. Text them to confirm an appointment. Send them health and wellness tips.
With very simple communication your patients will remember you and they will feel like you remember them and want them to come back. So use their contact information to keep in touch!
#2: Appointment Reminders Automatically Sent to Patient Via Email/Text
If you have one (or more!) no-show per week or month, isn’t that too many? If a patient makes an appointment with you, don’t you want them to show up?
Yes, it is very time consuming to personally call all of the appointments that you have each and every day. And let’s be honest, not a lot of people are answering their home phone anymore. Sometimes it feels like a complete waste of time to try and remind your patients about appointment.
You might be doing it all wrong.
Automating communication with patients is a tool that is available to you right now, and if you are using text messaging and email then it will be so much more effective.
Solutions like Auto-Remind allow you to remind patients via text, email or phone about appointments. They even confirm or reschedule for you based on the patients response.
Even if you did have time to call everyone on your schedule, automating your reminders is a much more effective way to confirm appointments and actually get patients to show up.
No more no-shows! No more lost revenue!
#3: Scheduling Ahead
During the check out process with a patient, making a habit of scheduling their next follow up or annual appointment will save you much hassle of having to do this later. It seems pretty rare to see a dentists office that isn’t booking the patients next cleaning for 6 months later at the time of the visit.
Implementing this procedure in your practice will save you time in the future and keep your schedule full!
#4: Newsletter Updates for Patients
A newsletter, whether weekly or monthly, can be a great reminder to patients to keep their health at the forefront of their minds, will establish you as an authority for their health, and the next time they need your services, the doctor they call will be you.
This can be filled with recipes, services your practice offers, health & wellness tips, as well as, how to effectively communicate with your practice about appointments, online customer portals, or social media.
Don’t have the time to do this on your own? No problem. Utilize one of the many newsletter services out there like The Newsletter Pro to help you get it done with little to no effort on your part.
No Shows. Cancellations. Half-Filled Waiting Rooms. Not Anymore!
You are now on your way to busy schedules, full waiting rooms, and happy patients!
Follow our blog for more tips & tricks to running a successful practice.
Want to learn more about our automatic appointment reminder system for Medisoft and Lytec? Check out this 60 day free trial!