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Dental Consultant Advice: No Show Fee?

Dental Consultant Advice: No Show Fee?

No one likes no shows or cancellations but they happen bit your scheduler nneds to know how to properly call a patient who has missed an appointment.

Done properly you can hopefully get the patient in, as well as find out what may have caused the patient to miss their appointment and remedy any internal problem that may have contributed to the patient not showing up.

Have the person with the best communication do this as you don't want to make the situation worse by having a poor communicator do the calls. This only applies to those who have not already missed three appointments (or two if they were not sorry after the second one). Those patients are either dimissed or put on a short call list only.

I don't advocate missed appointment fees but if you feel you must charge a fee, here is a fair and reasonable policy: 

a. On your New Patient Info sheet, state, "To AVOID a broken appointment charge, PLEASE let us know at least 24 hours before canceling your appointment."

b. At the first BA, indicate a BA on their ledger. Call them to find out what happened.

c. At the second BA, put a $35 BA charge on their ledger and then waive it.

d. For the third BA, put the charge on and DO NOT waive it. Let them take it from there. If they complain, you don't want them. If they pay it because they're guilty and feel bad, continue to appoint.


Kevin Tighe, Cambridge Dental Consultants, Senior Consultant, got bitten hard by the business and marketing bug during long summer days working at his dad's Madison Avenue ad agency. After joining Cambridge as a speaker in the mid-1990s, Kevin went on to become Cambridge’s senior consultant and eventually CEO. Cambridge Dental Consultants is a full-service dental practice management company offering customized dental office manuals. Frustrated? High overhead? Schedule a chat with Kevin at 

Dental Consultant Advice: Patient Retention
Dental Consultant Advice: D4910

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There is the good, the bad and the ugly of dental practice management, but many dentists will still tell you the probability is your dental consulting will work if you and your consultant are on the same page. It stands to reason that if a dental consultant had little value, worth or benefit that consultant could not stand up to harsh economic realities for long.  A veteran dental consultant is also a "personal coach" who shold bring management wisdom based on "in the trenches" experience along with systems and protocols to that have been successfully implemented in other practices. Top dental consultants talk and network with each other. They pay attention to what systems work and don't across many dental practices. 

Systems

New Patient Phone Call

Insurance Processing

New Patient Experience and Patient Education

Financial Arrangements

Scheduling

Confirmation

Unscheduled Treatment 

Reactivation

Daily and Weekly Checklists

General Policy Manual 

Staff Accountability

What gets monitored, gets managed. It is as simple as that. The only way to monitor what gets done is with daily stats especially for your weak areas. For example, one employee should be specifically responsible for calls to patients who are unscheduled, overdue for re-care or need reactivation. Other staff can and should help in coordination with the accountable employee.

Leadership

What most practice owners are lack in knowledge is not how to book an appointment, but rather how to be an effective leader. The best systems in the world are useless if the staff do not comply. Good leaders know how to get staff to willingly follow through and comply. 

Questions To Ask 

  1. Do you and/or your staff have to travel or does the consultant come to you?

  2. Is the program mostly one on one consulting versus seminars or courses with multiple clients in attendance?There are advantages to both.

  3. If the dental consulting is one on one who will actually deliver the consulting? I recommend knowing who your specific dental consultant will be prior to signing on the dotted line.

  4. Is program based on a specific dental practice management system? You want to avoid cookie-cutter programs. Ensure the program will be tailor-made to fit your practice's specific needs.

  5. The cost (including travel expenses and downtime) is certainly not the only factor, everything else being equal, it is still a major factor to consider. It's unwise to pay too much, but it's worse to pay too little.  

 

Top Dental Practice Mangement Consultant

Shane Blake DDS Coudersport, PAMy name is Kevin Tighe. I am Cambridge's CEO and Senior Consultant. Before joining the Cambridge team I was in charge of setting up workshops for large nonprofits throughout the United States and Canada. During that time, I was fortunate to receive mentoring from several world-class business consultants, including a dental practice management guru, which led to a position at Cambridge as their seminar organizer. In time, I began crisscrossing the country delivering seminars myself for the better part of a decade. Subsequently, I moved up to senior consultant and eventually owner.  Contributing writer to Dental Economics/DIQ, JADA, AGD Impact and Dental Town Magazine.

  

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