Regardless of how organized and efficient your medical office staff may be, patient no-shows are a constant reality facing medical practices. In fact, it’s said that many patients simply forget they had an appointment in the first place.
What’s the biggest problem here? Patient no-shows cost money!
For primary care doctors, an average of $100.00 is lost per missed appointment. Specialty providers are even higher at an average of $200.00.
Consider the following four factors when thinking of a patient attendance plan:
1. Schedule Management
According to the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA), scheduling accurately can help to avoid long wait times for patients. After all, if you want patients to respect your time, you need to start by respecting theirs.
2. Patient Management
Define your expectations of patient no-shows very clearly. For example, have you implemented a no-show and cancellation policy? Is there a no-show fee? Be sure that all of this information is documented appropriately for your patients.
3. Practice Management/Reporting
Your practice management software can also aid in reducing patient no-shows. Some tools make it easier to track which patients are chronically late or don’t show, so more careful attention can be provided before an appointment.
Appointment reminders are crucial to reducing patient no-shows. In fact, according to a University of Rochester study, patients were nearly 40% more likely to miss their appointment if they did not receive an appointment reminder. Here are some best practice tips:
- Offer multiple communication methods for reminders
- Send appointment reminder messages well enough in advance
- Allow patients to connect-back to the office to reschedule, if needed
To see how Alert Solutions can help your practice alleviate patient no-shows, download our Automated Appointment Reminder Worksheet today!