Recently, I’ve been working with a number of practices who, due to our having successfully increased their new patient numbers, are now focusing on conversion to treatment. When you see new patient, numbers increase, followed by no or a relatively small increase in production numbers, it becomes obvious that there is an issue with treatment acceptance. The correlation between new patient numbers going up or down, and then production following, is well documented in dental practices.
It’s a good idea to manage this – by regularly looking back over the past 6 months, for any New Patient spikes – i.e. higher than average new patient numbers monthly. Next, look at production numbers in the months immediately following. Was there a corresponding increase ? If so, great! Congratulations, you get a very good rating in the patient education/acceptance of treatment area of your practice. If not, then here are some factors that may be responsible for the shortfall e.g.
a) doctor too rushed to explain treatment effectively;
b) patients leaving without seeing the treatment co-ordinator, who is busy on the phone or juggling other hats;
c) no one in your practice, who is trained to handle patients when they say they ‘want to think about it’ or that they can’t afford it;
d) patients are not being followed up fully, after they leave the practice.
The purpose of this post, is not to fully handle this for each practice, but to make sure you know a) how to identify when it’s an issue, so you can then work on stopping the bleeding and b) to give you an initial checklist to figure out what might be causing this. To fully handle this area of your practice, contact me for a complimentary consultation for a tailored approach to your situation.