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Debbie Seidel Bittke

Dental Consulting | Dental Hygiene Patients: Keep the Back Door Closed

Dental Consulting | Dental Hygiene Patients: Keep the Back Door Closed

12/14/2018 8:32:51 AM   |   Comments: 0   |   Views: 42

We hear this question all the time, “Can you help me get more new patients to my office?

The answer is, “Doctor, do you realize that you have 1,560 patients and 300 of these patients have not returned to your office in the last eighteen months?”

How to keep the back door closed when new dental patients come to your office.

The most effective plan you can have in place is to reactivate your over-due hygiene patients. If you have a program such as SolutionReach, you can very easily reactivate these 300 over-due hygiene patients.

STEPS TO KEEP THE BACK DOOR CLOSED

Step 1. Know Your Numbers.

The team at Dental Practice Solutions, recommends that you run a hygiene report, so you know how needs to return for a hygiene appointment in the last eighteen months.

Step 2. Send a Special “We Miss You Letter.”

Send this e-newsletter to over-due hygiene patients. SolutionReach has great template to send patients an eye-grabbing e-newsletter.

Step 3. Offer an Incentive to patients who receive your e-Newsletter.

We have created a system around reactivation of your overdue hygiene patients. Without a doubt it works well to offer patients a gift for returning. This is the WIIFM syndrome. You know what I mean by WIIFM? I mean the “What’s in it for me” syndrome.

What has worked well for numerous years is offering your patients free tooth whitening when they do complete their hygiene appointment, pay for the prophy or necessary treatment, along with appropriate x-rays (BWX, FMX, etc.) and doctor exam. At the end of the hygiene appointment the hygienist or a clinician will take impressions and the patient returns in a day or two to pick. Up their whitening trays and two syringes of gel.

 
You can also have your whitening gel syringes customized here.

Step 4. Call Your Overdue Hygiene Patients.

 

Each day someone in your office should be working on calling overdue hygiene patients. Not too many people actually answer their phone these days so if you don’t get ahold of your patient, your next step is to text your patient.

 

Step 5. Texting Overdue Hygiene Patients.

 

What do you text a patient, so they want to call your office and schedule their hygiene appointment?

First of all, let me say that it is important that you have two-way texting set up if you do have the ability to text your patients. In today’s fast-paced and technologically oriented world, it is important that you can text two-ways with patients of record.

Your text should only say this: Please give our office a call about your appointment.

“They don’t have an appointment,” you say!

That is correct, the don’t have an appointment and you do want them to call about an appointment………one they need to schedule.

This one sentence works in a phone message or text and…. btw, it works very well when you are calling to collect money. That is

another blog, another day.


Step 6. What You Must Say When You Do Talk to the Patient?

Before you pick up the phone to call a patient and even if a patient calls about an appointment, it is important to look at the patients record, if you have electronic patient charts.

You need to look at the patient’s ledger to see if they owe money, etc. Very important is to look at the patient’s clinical notes and read about the reason WHY they need to return.

Ask yourself before you call the patient:

        
  • When was the last time there were in our office?
  •     
  • What do they need to return for?     
              
    • Is it only (Not just lol) a hygiene appointment?
    •         
    • Do they have outstanding/unscheduled treatment?
    •     
        
  •     
  • What do you know if valuable to the patient?     
              
    • For example, is money a possible concern and maybe a reason they have not returned?         
                    
      • Be prepared to overcome money objections by offering solutions and changing the loss of money into this appointment will help them save money             
                          
        • For example: Patients who have diabetes or high blood pressure, this is the perfect opportunity to talk about the mouth-body connection. Let them know that a healthy mouth means less money on medications and doctor/hospital visits
        •             
                    
      •         
              
    •     
        

 

Step 7. Try Something Different Than You Have Been Doing.

You know what they say about insanity?

Doing the same thing over and over does not typically yield a good outcome. Take one or all of these steps and begin today implementing one. Just try one of these.

Go to your calendar and on today’s date write “Begin Reactivation.” Write down how many overdue patients you have on this day. Next turn to your calendar six months out and write a reminder to check the number of overdue hygiene patients.

The goal is for this number to be less than it is today.

And do remember to be patient with yourself (And the team) as you implement these new steps.

Each month you must run a hygiene report and reach out to your overdue hygiene patients. It still surprises me, the number of offices we work with. When we investigate a new clients reactivation process, it happens too often, that there is no reactivation system hence, hundreds, thousands of overdue hygiene patients.

Do you have an over-abundance of overdue hygiene patients? Does reactivating them seem like a daunting task? Reach out to use. Let’s create your strategy and close the back door for new patients as well as your current patients of record. Schedule a no-cost Profit Boosting Session Here.

You can also email us or call: 949-351-8741 to get this scheduled now.

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