The Dawson Academy Blog

Dental Articles on Occlusion, Centric Relation, Restorative Dentistry & More

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The Keys to Daily Patient Prep for Complete Dentistry

A football team huddles before every play.  They get on the same page and hit the line playing their individual roles towards a common goal.

Can you imagine if they did not do this? Or did it off the cuff or if the play did not have enough detail or omitted key data altogether? What a disaster that would be toward the common goal.

It is the same scenario in a complete dentistry practice.

In this free whitepaper, Kathy Anderson goes over 3 key elements to include in daily morning huddles with your team.

This whitepaper covers:
  • What should be discussed in a team huddle
  • What the huddle should sound like
  • How to use reviewed information for staff meetings
  • And more...
Click here to download this free whitepaper now.

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6 Tips for Minimizing Broken Appointments- Part 2

By Kathy Anderson, Director of Client Success

In a previous post discussing tips for minimizing broken appointments, I wrote about three cycles of communication: at the time of diagnosis, listen to the patient's concerns, and financial discussion. The following are three more important tips for minimizing broken appointments.

4.  Give patients options when scheduling the appointment. Give them 2 choices in your appropriate block and if your blocks allow, give them a choice of afternoon or morning.  The kiss of death is to ask a patient when they would like to come in.  It can immediately set you up to have to say no to the patient or upset the clinical team.  Also, let the patient know the length of their appointment. If you sense any hesitation from the patient make sure to stop and address the issue.  It is much better to have a patient leave and not schedule than to reserve an appointment that they are more than likely going to cancel.

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6 Tips for Minimizing Broken Appointments- Part 1

Broken appointments and no shows are inevitable in a dental practice.  However, a healthy percentage must be monitored and action taken if it falls in the unhealthy range. We identify health as less than 5% for the doctor and less that 12% for hygiene. If you are over these healthy markers you will need to take action.

Not only are broken appointments stressful, frustrating and costly they typically occur as a result of a broken communication cycle that started prior to the appointment.

In some cases, patients should never have been put on the schedule in the first place.

Let’s examine these 3 cycles of communication:

  1. At the time of diagnosis the patient has to see and understand every problem that you point out.   As Dr Dawson always states, if the patient does not know they have a problem there is no basis for a sale. The patient also has to understand the implication of leaving it that way, which is what causes the patient to act.  The value to the patient for acting on the problem must be uncovered and used to help guide the patient to an appointment.
  2. Listen to the patient’s concerns: current life events, finances, time, commitment and so on. Help guide the patient to the best choice for them, which could be to not schedule the appointment at this time. It is important they feel understood and heard.  This understanding develops a stronger relationship and builds trust. Document the discussion and refer to it during the next contact.
  3. Financial discussion is important at the time of scheduling, For the patients who are ready to schedule, you must be very clear about the fee and payment arrangements. The patient is the best judge of what they can afford and how they can pay it.  During the discussion, make sure your financial guidelines are adhered to.  If it is not possible for the patient to fall within these guidelines, it is not a good idea to reserve precious time on the schedule for them and not get paid for it.  Financial arrangements should be documented and a copy given to the patient.

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A second life through Complete Dentistry

As I sat having lunch with a group of dentists at Seminar 2 dental course in March of 2010, one dentist at the table stood out.  His story was like none I had heard in  dentistry.  
We have all heard stories of people who have cheated death and found a new appreciation and enthusiasm for life and all the things they want to accomplish.  For Dr. John Iverson, a diagnosis of terminal cancer sent him on a journey to be the best he could be.  He realized that learning the Dawson philosophy of Complete Care was not for him, but for his patients. 
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