How to offer an appointment | Effective scheduling for Doctor and Hygienist

Episode 5

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Date: 06/04/2023

Name of the Podcast: Dear Laura Show
Episode Title and Number: Dear Laura Show, Episode 5

In 5th episode of Dear Laura Show, Laura addresses a common question about accommodating patient appointment preferences while maintaining a productive schedule. She advises that it’s important to have a schedule policy in place with back-to-back appointments, and to train team members on how to follow it. She notes that while it’s tempting to accommodate patients’ preferred appointment times, it can disrupt the schedule and ultimately decrease productivity. Instead, she suggests asking patients if there is a day or time of day that works best for them and then offering two appointment options within that timeframe that also work for the schedule. She emphasizes the importance of proper phrasing when offering appointments and not asking if the patient wants to schedule, but rather when they would like to schedule. Lastly, she reminds listeners that the practice is in control of the schedule and that team members should work to offer the appointments that align with the schedule policy.

Outline of the Episode:
[00:01] Introduction
[01:18] Balancing patient requests with productivity: Scheduling advice.
[02:05] Efficient back-to-back appointments: Benefits of no gaps.
[02:55] Flexible scheduling: Accommodating patient preferences while managing schedules.
[05:08] Scheduling policies and team training impact productivity.
[05:50] Handling patients who cancel or miss appointments frequently.
[07:06] Track & communicate cancellations & no-shows to optimize appointment scheduling.
[08:09] Why is it important to have a clear cancellation policy and communicate it to patients?
[10:44] Why addressing the root cause of missed appointments is crucial?

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