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7 Appointment Scheduling Tips for Dental Practices

Getting patients in and out on time at a dental practice is key to the success of an office. The muscle behind the success of this method is proper appointment scheduling. Scheduling for a dental practice can be stressful with so many things going on in an office. By focusing on these seven appointment scheduling tips and automating your process, your dental practice will become a well-oiled scheduling machine.

1. Schedule in Proper Increments

Time is money, and this couldn’t be more important than in a dental office. Most dentists plan their schedule with 15-minute increments between patients. This is lost money that quickly adds up and could prevent a practitioner from retiring on-time, if at all.

We suggest shaving down your time between patients to 10-minutes. This may take some practice, but with automated software, your schedule will become more efficient and in the end, make you more money.

2. Keep Your Appointment Slots Filled

Don’t let patient cancellations or unfilled time slots become the bane of your office. Get yourself familiar with a waiting list management system. This type of software helps automatically fill empty slots in your schedule.

The software will send out dental appointment reminders via text to patients. Should one cancel, the text reminder app will then reach out to specific patients that could potentially fill this time slot, leaving you with zero money lost.

3. Schedule for the Present and the Future

Scheduling ahead is always in your best interest as a dentist. This is especially true when you begin to develop lasting relationships with your patients. Your schedule will quickly become filled for the time being, but that is okay. As long as you have daily scheduling goals in place you will always be able to focus on the now and if the methods you are practicing are effective.

4. Don’t Forget Hygiene Appointments

A dentist cannot rely on new patients and dental emergencies alone to survive in the industry. Hygiene appointments are detrimental to your business’ success. With programs like DoctorConnect, you can use appointment scheduling software to plan out distant appointments with hygiene patients before they leave your office.

5. Have Your Station Prepared

clean dental station before appointmentThis may sound like a basic suggestion, but too many dentists have wasted their time by not having the station prepped for each patient. Aside from getting your scheduling down to perfection, work with your staff to come up with a great routine for prepping the station between patients. Automated scheduling will shave off lots of time for your office and allow this to become a reality.

6. Automate Your Appointment Scheduling

Appointment scheduling has never been easier than with the modern tech of software. Forget the phone calls and refer your patients to online appointment scheduling. By working with automation software, your dental business will make planning for dental care stress-free for both you and your patients. Appointment scheduling also reduces no shows, sends out patient appointment reminders and works excellent with text messages and email.

7.   Always Schedule to Maximize Production

Maximizing production is the ultimate goal of a dental office. This can best be done by creating more time in a schedule for cosmetic procedures like dental implants or more advanced root canals. With programs that automate your schedule, you can easily separate the types of appointments on your plate and when they fit into your overall availability.

Keep Your Dental Practice On Schedule with DoctorConnect

Dental services in the United States rely on near-perfect scheduling of upcoming appointments. It isn’t easy to reach the goal of perfection without some help. Let DoctorConnect be the software that helps make your office as efficient as you need it to be. Contact us to find out how to schedule a demo for your office today.

2018-08-14T21:56:34+00:00August 14th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Keeping Appointment Reminders Compliant with HIPAA

Patient privacy and doctor appointments go hand-in-hand. The healthcare industry takes every measure possible to ensure that a patient’s medical or personal information is safely stored and not spread around and into the wrong hands. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, or, HIPAA, is healthcare’s main way of securing data privacy.

Recently, medical appointment reminders have become HIPAA approved. While this is a great step for healthcare providers using automated software, it is important that they understand these five tips for remaining in compliance while also providing the necessary information to those receiving the messages.

hippa compliant appointment reminders

Why is HIPAA Important?

HIPAA was created to benefit customers and improve the health insurance system with the simplification of healthcare in general. There are four key reasons why HIPAA is important to patients. This law ensures:

  1. Security of Health Information,
  2. Privacy of Health Data,
  3. Medical Record Copies for Patients,
  4. Patient Notification of Data Breaches

Remaining in compliance is integral for a healthcare company. Taking a look at these five tips can help you cover the necessary bases when creating automated appointment reminders.

1. Take a Good Look at Your Notice of Privacy Practices

Your Notice of Privacy Practice is your key to properly sending out automated appointment reminders to patients. Make sure that your NPP is updated and gives your patients the chance to opt-in or out of SMS or email reminders. Ensure that your policy is clear and specifically states what your patients are opting-in on.

2. Keep Your Patients Held Accountable

Your privacy policy is only as good as the information that you have on file for each patient. One wrong number or address can put your office in danger of stepping out of compliance. Keep your patients accountable and remind them to notify you of any phone number or address changes.

3. Know What to Include and Leave Out of Your Appointment Reminders

When creating an appointment reminder, minimize the health information displayed. Use the name of the physician instead of what specialty the physician services. Do not include any information about the treatment plan or diagnosis of a patient in the reminder.

Remember that it is always possible for an unauthorized party to get ahold of this message. Therefore, if you would feel uncomfortable broadcasting the patient information on a talk show, don’t put it in your appointment reminder.

4. Contact Your HIPAA Compliance Officer

Should you still have concerns about how to remain HIPAA compliant, your healthcare practice should have a compliance officer on-hand. They will be able to guide you into the right direction for your automated reminder services.

5. Work with a HIPAA-Compliant Appointment Reminder Service

Choosing the right software provider for automated appointment reminders is important. Going with a HIPAA compliant provider like DoctorConnect is a great way to remain compliant while not having to worry too much about the specifics.

DoctorConnect Helps Your Healthcare Office Stay in Compliance with Appointment Reminders

If your physician’s office is ready to take the steps into automated services for appointment reminders, wait list services, and more, DoctorConnect is prepared to help you take control of your automated services. Contact us today to schedule your demo!

2018-07-17T17:07:28+00:00July 13th, 2018|Compliance, HIPAA, Latest Announcements|0 Comments

5 Ways Wait List Management Software Improves Your Office

Keeping your office’s schedule full is important. Unfilled patient slots and patient cancelations are occurrences that cost your business money. While DoctorConnect knows that patients are your priority, we also understand that without a successful bottom line, you are unable to serve patients properly.

Find out five reasons how our wait list management system improves your office and keeps your location thriving.

1. Easily Fill Open Appointment Slots

With our wait list management software, you have the ability to improve your patient engagement tools and easily fill any open appointment slots. We know that unfilled appointment slots happen, and in the past, this meant scrambling to find an available patient to fill the spot. Before modern technology. this was a difficult task, but with DoctorConnect on your side, you can send a quick text message to your patients on a wait list.

The process is simple. Once the text is delivered to patients, the first one to reply claims the open spot. Patients who did not receive the spot get another text that notifies them of the spot being filled and that they will be contacted should another spot become available.

2. Changes Can Be Made Instantly

Wait list management allows you to make changes easily and makes communication between the front desk, physicians and patients seamless. When you work with DoctorConnect, you are instantly notified of all of the patient activity that affects your office. This gives you the opportunity to make any physical changes in the office that will best prepare you for the change in schedule. Where this would have left physician, offices stressed out in the past, with wait list management, offices can now easily focus on the important changes at hand.

3. All of Your Appointments Are In One Place

Instead of having to store patient appointments on several folders in your computer, wait list management software keeps all of your important information in one place. This makes any data you need readily accessible should you need to double-check when a patient is supposed to come in.

4. Reduce the Financial Pain of Patient No-Shows

As we mentioned earlier, patient no-shows present a huge financial burden for an office. By acquiring software that offers wait list management services, you are essentially reducing the risk of losing money because a patient didn’t feel like coming in. This software also helps to improve patient retention and recare.

5. Stay in Communication With Your Patients

Communication is key in the healthcare field. With DoctorConnect, you get to choose which patients to notify on a waiting list. Maybe you are only prepared for certain procedures on a certain day when an opening arises. With DoctorConnect wait list management, you can now be specific with who fills that opening when you need it.

DoctorConnect’s Wait List Management Keeps Your Appointments Filled

Don’t let another appointment slot go unfilled. Let the software from DoctorConnect help you keep your scheduling on track. Contact us today to find out more about the benefits of our software and how to schedule a demo.

2018-06-29T19:23:17+00:00June 29th, 2018|No Show / Wait List Management|0 Comments

The Importance of Patient Satisfaction Surveys and How to Improve Yours

We’ve all filled a patient satisfaction survey out at the doctor’s office. From answering questions about the ease of scheduling to the cleanliness of the facility, physicians want to know how satisfied you were with your service. Here are some examples of why patient satisfaction surveys are so important to a practice and how you can improve your surveys and results through automated software provided by DoctorConnect.

Why Are Patient Surveys So Important?

Patient satisfaction surveys are essentially a report card of how each patient’s experience was in your office. To put it simply, they matter because they are a direct correlation between patient retention and the financial success of an office.

1. They Serve as a Link Between Patient and Physician

Patient satisfaction surveys let an office know first-hand what the patient experienced throughout their visit. Sometimes a patient may not feel comfortable letting a physician know about something wrong first-hand. A patient satisfaction survey serves as a simple, direct link between a patient and physician that helps improve the overall quality of an office.

Also, studies have shown that when there is this line of direct communication between a patient and physician the likelihood of malpractice claims or suits reduces as satisfaction rises. So, keeping an open communication space is important to retaining trust and ultimately, your security.

2. Patient Satisfaction Surveys Serve as a Quality Improvement Tool

Although these surveys may seem like basic formalities, the questions that you decide to place on them can help you improve your office when viewing them as quality improvement tools.

For example, if you noticed that appointment scheduling was difficult, you would instantly be able to meet with your staff and find out how to improve the issue.

Satisfaction surveys let your staff know where the office stands in your patient’s eyes and simply knowing where to work harder should be the first steps taken to improve patient engagement as a whole.

3. They Improve Patient Retention

Patient retention is the ultimate goal of a physician. Patient acquisition is hard work, so keeping patients satisfied and returning through your doors based on their loyalty to your practice is important. Retention ultimately affects your bottom line through reimbursements, guaranteed co-pays, and new patients based on word of mouth.

Improving Your Patient Satisfaction Survey Results with Automation

Once you have determined what you need to fix, you get right down to it. The easiest way to solve typical issues that arise on a survey can be done through automated software that helps control your office behind the front desk. Working with automated software allows you to take control of where you need to improve.

DoctorConnect’s software is perfect for aiding offices with:

  • Patient scheduling,
  • Patient engagement,
  • Appointment reminders,
  • Patient satisfaction surveys,
  • Wait-List management, and more.

DoctorConnect’s Software Helps You Focus on What Matters

If you are ready to step up to the plate and improve your office’s satisfaction surveys, DoctorConnect is ready to lend a helping hand. Contact us today to schedule a demo of our software and find out exactly how our product can better your practice.

2018-06-29T18:35:02+00:00June 14th, 2018|Patient Engagement|0 Comments

4 Reasons to Utilize Automated Scheduling Software

A healthcare office’s schedule is one of the most important data files in the industry. It regulates how the day plays out and lets physicians know what types of patients they need to be prepared for. Unfortunately, the modern healthcare setting is prone to change on a whim.

From missed appointments to simply unfilled timeslots, office scheduling without software has become increasingly difficult. As time continues to move on the need for automated scheduling software becomes even more necessary for healthcare providers and emergency room staff. The benefits of this software are there, and DoctorConnect is proud to offer these four pieces of insight on why automated scheduling software is so important.

1.  Patient Management Has Never Been Easier

Patient management is the biggest reason to automate your scheduling. Based on your retention numbers, patient satisfaction surveys, and patient word-of-mouth, you could easily be facing a large amount of returning patients and new patients alike.

By automating your appointment scheduling your office life becomes so much more organized with perks like:

  • Easier new patient registration
  • Accurate description of appointment types
  • Missed appointments and rescheduled requests
  • Accurate patient personal information

2. Save Money Within Your Practice

If your office is still using pens, papers, and spreadsheets to create a scheduling calendar, you are losing money without even realizing it. Not only do you have to replace the materials that are used for scheduling, but you have to pay employees for hours of work as they create these schedules on a regular basis and miss out on positive patient engagement.

With automated scheduling, the same tasks can be performed instantaneously and money can be saved. Over time, this saved money can go towards other aspects of your practice that have been in need of your attention.

3. Specialized Software Improves Patient Care

Not only does automated scheduling software save your office money, but it frees up extra time for your employees and staff to focus on improving patient care. Constantly improving the way that your office functions should be a key priority for a management team.

By using software like the product provided by DoctorConnect, your staff as a whole will have less to worry about and become more comfortable in the workplace. This type of environment creates two key results:

  1. Engaged staff
  2. Satisfied, well cared for, patients

In healthcare, patient satisfaction is the entire point. Don’t miss that point by focusing on outdated scheduling practices that take away from the patient experience.

4. Automated Scheduling Makes the Patient Experience Flexible

Speaking of the patient experience, automated software makes the total experience with your staff flexible and tailored to modern needs. With automated software, gone are the days where you need to call and check-up on a patient for a scheduled appointment. Now, you can instantly reach out to them through automated software and send out notifications that include:

Make Office Life Better with Automated Scheduling From DoctorConnect

Automated scheduling is now the preferred method for the top providers in the city of Dallas. However, we know that most businesses want to invest in a product they know will benefit them. That is why we are proud to offer you a chance to schedule a live demo of our DoctorConnect software. Reach out to us today to find out how to get your demo and how we can help to make your office a better experience.

2018-08-06T19:46:43+00:00June 5th, 2018|Doctor Tips|0 Comments

3 Ways Patient Retention Helps Medical Offices

A doctor’s office relies on one thing for good business, and that is patients coming through the doors consistently. It takes a lot of work and excellent marketing to bring in new batches of patients on a daily basis. Therefore, patient retention is one of the main goals that every doctor or vet should strive for.

Although retaining patients may seem like a no-brainer, the modern physician’s office has now evolved and made this goal reliant on automating software like DoctorConnect for its success.

What is Patient Retention?

The definition of patient retention is very simple. Instead of doctors relying on bringing in new patients on a daily basis, they rely on return visits from previous patients. By following procedures that highlight positive patient experiences, doctors are able to increase the possibility of the patient returning to their office.

Patient retention is the root of building a loyal patient base that eventually branches out to new patients through positive word-of-mouth. It is one of the most important aspects of running an office and has several points of impact on a site’s success.

Why Does Patient Retention Matter?

1. It Helps You Manage Patient Care

The management of your patient’s care is important. Successful engagement with your patients helps you to have a continuous impact on their long-term care. Constantly jumping from physician to physician is not only costly for both patient and doctor, but important patient information can be lost along the way.

2. Long-Term Patients Tend to Spend More

This is a fact. If patients place their trust in you enough to return to you as the years go by, when the higher cost procedures begin to come up in their lifetime, they are more likely to spend the money. Based on the positive relationship and reliability that you have built through successful patient retention methods, you are able to break out of the “new patient” bubble that can financially hold a physician back.

3. Reduced Marketing Cost

By retaining your patients, you gain access to one of the most significant benefits of proper retention methods. Online marketing and social media definitely help with bringing in new patients. However, the most effective marketing is the free word-of-mouth marketing that a happy patient does through referrals to friends and family.

How Does DoctorConnect Improve Patient-Retention?

DoctorConnect helps your office implement efficient patient retention strategies through our automating software. DoctorConnect is able to help you remind patients to come back to your office for more of the great care that you have to offer. Based on your own rules and your patient’s last appointment date, DoctorConnect can automatically send messages to:

  • Patients that have not been seen in a year
  • Patients with appointments that must happen every 30 days
  • All patients that meet a specific status or criteria

Although the bedside manner is all in your hands, let DoctorConnect help you ace the communication that is required to help create recare patients.

Schedule a Demo with DoctorConnect Today!

If you are in need of creating seamless, flexible communication methods to help with patient retention, DoctorConnect is here to help. We specialize in helping you with automated appointment reminders, wait-list management, re-care messaging, and more. Get in touch with us today to schedule your free demo of our software.

2018-05-23T18:33:40+00:00May 23rd, 2018|Doctor Tips|0 Comments

10 Simple Ways to Improve Patient Engagement

Implementing these 10 different methods into your healthcare business’ routine will help boost patient engagement in no time. Although healthcare is all about keeping patients healthy and up-to-date, patient engagement can sometimes be lackluster. Find out how patient engagement can easily be improved through the use of automated software.

10. Having Office Staff Call is a Thing of the Past

Calling patients to remind them about appointments is a practice of the past. Most patients actually prefer to be contacted by their physicians via email. Using a communication method that fits a patient’s lifestyle keeps them happy and overall engaged in their healthcare.

9. Make Sure Your Site is Mobile-Friendly

These days, our whole lives can be summed up on our mobile devices. If you know your patients are going to be searching for your site, make sure that it is mobile-friendly. This way, patients can easily browse your site and make necessary appointments without any hassle or stress.

8. Text Reminders Improve Patient Engagement

Automated text reminders are an excellent way to not only improve patient engagement, but to help prevent no-shows. Most patients prefer this method because it is quick and doesn’t interfere with their day-to-day lifestyle.

7. Make Sure Patient Resources Are Available

Patient resources are important. By offering online information on your website or app, your patient has the opportunity for engagement by reading up on the latest and greatest information in your industry.

6. Waitlist Notifications

Although text reminders help prevent no-shows, they still happen. With waitlist notifications available, you can fill those empty appointment slots, fast. If your patient knows that this is an available option, come appointment day, they will definitely be looking out for a welcome waitlist notification.

5. Schedule Appointments Online

Online appointment scheduling has never been easier than with automated software like the software offered by DoctorConnect. Online scheduling makes the process easy, instant, engaging, and reliable for both you and your patients.

4. Remain Active on Social Media

Everyone seems to have a social media account, so your practice should too. Get active on social media and interact with patients. Offer them interesting articles and opportunities to gain potential benefits from your practice by ‘following,’ ‘re-tweeting,’ or ‘liking’ your page. All social media interaction is positive patient engagement, even if it isn’t time for an upcoming appointment.

3. Use a Combination of Communication (Text, Email, Phone)

Sometimes you need a variety of communication methods to keep your patients engaged. When reminding patients of annual checkups, sometimes a simple email just won’t cut it. Many people overlook emails, which is why we recommend adding text reminders and phone calls to get your patients back in the office for a checkup.

2. Make Sure Wi-Fi Is Available

Keeping your patients connected with their families while they are at your office is important. By offering Wi-Fi services, you are granting them a luxury of not having to use their data plans at your location. This is very subtle patient engagement but will take your office a long way.

1. Offer Instant Patient-Provider Updates

Things change and updates need to be sent out. Improve your communication and patient engagement the easy way with automated engagement software. This way, updates can be instant and sent out in mass texts to participating patients, giving you more time to handle your current priorities.

Improve Your Patient Engagement Today With DoctorConnect’s Software

If you are ready to take a step into the future of patient care, get in touch with DoctorConnect today. Our automated patient engagement software will quickly refine your scheduling process, communication, no-show management, and more. Contact us to find out more about our product features.

2018-06-06T15:18:19+00:00May 14th, 2018|Doctor Tips, Patient Engagement|0 Comments

The Importance of Patient No-Show Management

In the modern age, cancelling plans seems to be something we have all just come to accept. This casual cancellation approach isn’t just with friends and family; it also happens to physicians. Even though appointment reminders help to greatly reduce no-shows, these situations still happen.

In fact, patient no-shows happen so regularly, that many physicians have signs in their lobbies stating that you will be billed a hefty fee for not cancelling within 24-hours. Patient no-shows, and current resolutions are problematic for several reasons. Find out why it is important to monitor patient no-shows and come up with a way to handle them that reduces this loss in profit.

How Do Missed Appointments Impact an Office?

Missed appointments without an advanced notice have an impact on a doctor’s office. While many patients may think that their no-call/no-show doesn’t matter, in reality, they are costing themselves and the physician money. That empty space in a doctor’s schedule could have been filled with a patient that would have actually shown up.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, the average rate of no-shows is very high and results in loss of revenue. Only 63 percent of medical groups actually track their missed appointments, with only 46 percent of groups with no-shows actually trying to address the problem.

Impromptu missed appointments leave gaps in a physician’s schedule that prevent them from filling the missed appointment with reliable patients. This not only impacts revenue, but with the rising trend of charging for no-shows, many patients just don’t follow up. Sadly, this results in patients not receiving the proper care that they need. Other ways that poor no-show management impacts the office include:

  • Wasted staff time
  • Decline in patient satisfaction
  • A backed-up schedule

A physician’s office can only leave so many messages before tracking the trail of your patient becomes taxing and complicated. Many offices use outdated systems like spreadsheets and prepared documents. With DoctorConnect, there is a presented option to monitor and manage patient no-shows.

Best Practices for No-Show Management with DoctorConnect

Many physicians can easily turn to blaming the patient as their no-show management. Take a good look at your office and how it is run. Is your office automated? Do you have a reminder and follow-up system in place?

DoctorConnect can help your office with our No-Show Management feature with our software. With DoctorConnect, you don’t have to pick up a phone to reach out to your patients. If you find that you have a no-show on your hand, simply select the right item on our dashboard and your patient will automatically be sent a text informing them that they have missed their appointment and need to reschedule.

This creates a time saving solution that will help you best keep track of the patients who routinely miss appointments. The rescheduling is on them, but at least your office no longer has to use its precious time to reach out to a voice message.

Wait List Management

Aside from sending bulk messages for patients to reschedule their appointment, DoctorConnect helps your office fill those gaps in your schedule. With our Wait List Management feature, patients have the option to join a waitlist that correlates with your office schedule. Upon a cancellation or no-show, patients on the wait list are notified, and your schedule can remain filled. On top of this, your patients continue to get the care that they need.

Request a Demo for DoctorConnect’s No-Show Management Software

If your physician’s office is tired of having to deal with the creation of complex spreadsheets and placing manual calls out to patients who don’t show up, DoctorConnect is here to help. Utilize our No-Show Management software and make sure that your patient is well taken care of via our program. Get started easy by requesting a demo today so we can show you how our system can increase the efficiency of your office.

2018-04-09T20:55:54+00:00April 9th, 2018|Latest Announcements|0 Comments
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