There’s nothing quite as disheartening as being stood up, whether it’s for a date or a dental appointment.
A patient not showing up for their appointment is a frustrating occurrence for you and your staff. You’ve committed the time and resources to the care of a patient, only to have them let you down.
Why do no-shows happen? How do they affect your practice? What can you do about them? These are all questions we hope to help you with in this article.
Why Do No-Shows Happen?
Before we talk about the effects of no-shows, we should first examine why they occur.
It’s not out of malice. As much as it might feel that way, the patient isn’t sitting there saying “I think I will just skip my appointment today”. In fact, the most common cause of a patient not showing up for their appointment is that they simply forgot. It happens; human memory is fallible and appointments are often booked far in advance of the date. Other common causes include patient schedule conflicts and miscommunication.
These are all fairly easy situations to remedy, as we will discuss later in this piece.
How Do No-Shows Affect Your Practice?
No-shows are a real downer on your entire office. They can affect your practice in many key ways.
First, it’s obviously a monetary loss when the patient does not show up. It is estimated that no-shows in the USA cost the health industry $150 billion on an annual basis, with an average of $200 lost per time slot. Practices cannot take this kind of loss on a regular basis.
Even setting aside the financial cost, no-shows can have a detrimental effect on your workplace. A patient not bothering to show up can feel like a personal slight against you, which leads to lower morale. With lower morale, the quality of work can suffer, creating a worse experience for your patients who do show up. Your patients deserve better care than that and so do you!
How Can You Reduce No-Shows?
Given that no-shows are detrimental to your practice, the question everyone asks is “how can I keep this from happening?”. Now that we are armed with the knowledge that the most common reason for no-shows is simple forgetfulness, the clear solution is to send appointment reminders to your patients.
Sending out simple reminders is an easy way to make sure patients remember they have an upcoming appointment. This gives them a chance to make sure their schedule is still clear and that the time works for them. No more forgotten appointments! You’ll see a significant reduction in the rate of no-shows.
However, having your staff spend all day on the phone trying to get confirmations can still have patients slip through the cracks and lead to staff burnout. The answer; automated reminders!
The Intiveo Solution
Intiveo understands your desire to cut down on patient no-shows and improve the office experience. Our software allows you to send automatic appointment reminders to your patients via phone, email, and even text. Every patient will get the experience that works best for them. Plus, the reminders are entirely customizable!
Your patients will appreciate the efforts to remind them and make their experience an easy one. Interested in reducing no-shows? Book a 30-minute demonstration of Intiveo today!