Finding better ways to improve the dental patient experience has become very important in recent years. It just wouldn’t do for your practice to be less efficient than it is; after all, your time and money are valuable too. Here are five tips you can use to improve the dental patient experience with your office with this fact in mind.
The first thing you should work on improving is Communication at your office. With today’s technology, it’s easier than ever to reach out and contact patients through dental email or text messaging; however, not everyone will feel comfortable doing this without some guidance. If someone emails you about an upcoming appointment (and they don’t receive a response), they may worry that their message didn’t go through. For this reason, you should have a policy in place for automatically replying to messages. Explain that we typically answer emails within 24-48 hours, and if they don’t hear back from you, be sure to get in touch with your front desk staff immediately to resolve the issue.
Improve Patient Communication
While email and text message communication is a great option, it isn’t always ideal for everyone (especially when it comes to sensitive matters like finances). If someone feels uncomfortable communicating over these channels, you should offer them the chance to call with any questions or concerns instead. Some practices even take advantage of video chat technology like Skype to allow their patients to chat with the doctor directly (this eliminates the need to make another appointment and can help you improve Communication).
New patients will be looking for a big improvement in the patient experience. They must understand what to expect during their first visit (it’s also a great way to weed out those who aren’t suited for your practice because of unrealistic expectations). If someone is expecting the doctor to spend hours upon hours talking with them about something as simple as a cleaning, they’re going to be disappointed. For this reason, you should consider using messaging software during orientation for new patients. Using the tool, you can send an email or text message explaining how much time should be expected for certain procedures, so there are no misunderstandings.
Improve the Front Desk Experience
As we all know, a happy front desk staff is key to improving the patient experience as a whole. Everyone must understand your office policies and procedures so they can effectively communicate with patients at check-in and check-out. It would be best to consider using software like adit for scheduling pre-appointment reminders (this ensures that patients never miss an appointment or arrive late). Last but not least, you’ll want a robust system for sending post-visit follow-ups to help ensure your new patient doesn’t have any unanswered questions about their treatment.
Improve Your Marketing Strategy
If you aren’t telling people what you do well, how will they know you’re the right choice for them? One of the best ways to improve your dental patient experience is by promoting your office’s strengths through marketing. It would be best if you also tried updating old materials with refreshed messaging so you can convey your practice’s family-friendly nature and commitment to customer service.
When implementing these strategies, keep in mind that improving the patient experience takes time (just like anything else). Don’t expect improvements overnight, but instead, work on giving potential patients a quality dental experience from beginning to end – this will help increase referrals and boost trust!
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