Every Clinic that you can think of will have this on their schedule – Appointments that are marked as a NO SHOW. So what is a NO SHOW – An appointment is booked but the patient fails to turn up and this can be for many unforeseen reasons. This is something unavoidable and if you do not take action against it, then this may lead to an even bigger issue, Low Footfall for your clinic.
A good Practice Management Software will give you the ability to handle this entire process of identifying and reducing no-shows without any human intervention. Let us see how:
Typically when starting your day, the first thing you would check is your Calendar. As the day progresses, your appointments go through various stages of being scheduled, in consultation and finally checkout. It may happen that a few appointments scheduled to come in during an earlier part of the day are still on the calendar with a Scheduled status. So you now know that these appointments are not going to go through as the time of the appointment is well past, hence they are a No Show. You can of course manually change the status of the appointment from Scheduled to No Show, but therein lies a risk.
Manually checking through all your appointments is prone to errors. Even one such miss a week for a 1 Doctor Clinic, means you lost out on 52 appointments annually. An average appointment on the lower end is $20, resulting in No-Shows costing the Clinic at least $1020 in revenues. This is just the revenue loss. What if the No Show was a new patient, someone who never got started off with your clinic? Now you would have lost out not on a single visit, but on a stream of visits.
Opt-in for a smart practice management system that auto-detects appointments where the current time is well past the appointment time, and where the patient has not turned up. Such a system will intelligently detect all the genuine no-shows, and report the same to you. ensuring not a single no-show can slip through the crack.
2. AUTO-REACH OUT
Okay great, now you have a system that reports all the no-shows to you. Not a single one is missed. But what’s the next step. you again fall back on your front desk to reach out to the No-Shows. Amongst reminders to future appointments, handling incoming footfall, billing those ready for checkout, and managing wait times, will the front desk remember and manage in the first attempt to call and then connect to each and every patient who was a no-show? Patients may not pick up their call or may not be able to talk as they are busy at work, school or with kids. Okay, so how about the front desk making a 2nd attempt, or the 3rd? How do you get the no-shows to come back?
Without an automated system in place, this is again done manually where you are utilizing a resource in the clinic to reach out to these customers over a phone call and there is no guarantee that you may reach out to all of them at the first attempt that you make. This way you do have some control but you may not reach out to all.
As you can see, if you are able to overcome these challenges then you know you have finally covered your bases. Sit back, and watch no-shows come in. Enjoy an increase in appointments and revenues, without having to lift a finger :).