Back in the day when I was working in a practice, when a new patient called to schedule a new patient visit, we would immediately send out a welcome packet which included a beautiful office brochure, welcome letter and directions to our practice. This was the gold standard when it came to customer service and showing off your practice to a new patient. We spent a lot of money on the printing of the brochure, adding the custom information to the welcome letter and sending it in the mail with a beautiful envelope with our office logo on it.
The new gold standard now is learning how to welcome our new patients in the new digital world. We recently did a webinar for our members called “Managing New Patients in a Digital World” and you can find it by CLICKING HERE. What we talked about is creating a personalized experience for our new patients without all the paper and sending the welcome letter to their technology of choice.
In today’s world of technology, the options are endless. Giving our new patients more accessibility to the new patient forms, links to make a payment or update their demographic information helps your practice get the information you need. New patients want to do things on their own time, on their own computer and at their own pace.
Within Dentrix, I am finding that many offices are opening the account in the Family File before the patient comes in so that you can enter notes from your first phone call. The other reason is so that any electronic correspondence will be sent to the patient for appointment reminders. Remember that if you open the Family File before the patient’s first visit, make sure you manually update the first visit date so your new patient list is accurate. In today’s digital world, there are many options for electronic correspondence so do your homework and schedule demos with the top vendors.
I think one of the most critical pieces of new patient appointment is the new patient forms, health history and HIPAA forms. With today’s technology, patients can fill out their forms from your website and have them delivered directly to the practice in real time. I was training with an office recently on the Dentrix Questionnaires and integrating them with the office website. About 5 minutes after the front office worker got off the phone with the new patient, she received the forms in real time. It was amazing. With the Dentrix Questionnaires, you can customize your forms and patients can fill them out on their own time from their own computer, tablet or mobile phone.
Our members took a deep dive into the Questionnaires last November during one of our live events. If you missed it, CLICK HERE to watch on-demand.