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5 Ways to Reduce Patient No-Shows at Your Practice

By February 4, 2019 November 7th, 2019 No Comments

Appointment Reminders

Appointment reminders have been used for years to prevent no-shows and last-minute cancellations. Today, you can take advantage of reminders that include automatic text messages, emails, and phone calls. Automated reminders save hours of labor and ensure that patients receive adequate notice.

Financial Penalty

Many hair salons and service industry businesses charge a nominal fee for missing an appointment. Typically, the business will charge the cost of the appointment or a flat fee. A medical practice could require patients to pay a co-pay or a flat fee as a penalty for not showing up, with a clause removing the charge for anyone who missed due to an emergency.

Clarify Your Wait Time

Sometimes, patients who are no-shows at the time of the appointment end up showing up 30 minutes late due to the steep expected wait time. If your practice has overbooked in the past, you should implement a better policy that respects patient and doctor time. After only two visits where patients are expected to wait longer than 30 minutes, the patients will naturally start to arrive 5-10 minutes later. The longer that your wait time is, the higher the number of patient no-shows you will have.

Break Up with the Patient

A more dramatic method of dealing with repeat offenders is discharging them as patients. Your practice can choose to have a policy stating that patients who fail to show up for a certain number of appointments (over the course of the year, in a row, etc.) will be discharged from your practice.

Use a Flexible Patient Scheduling Solution Like Next In Line to Combat Patient No-Shows

Next In Line is an innovative scheduling service that fills no-show and cancelled appointments in seconds. Next In Line’s easy to use system integrates with your existing practice management software and notifies patients who have signed up for your wait list the second that appointments become available. We specialize in helping practices recover time and revenue while improving the patient experience. To learn more about our offerings and see how we can assist your dental practice with efficient scheduling, get in touch by calling 800-264-7101.