Reduce chiropractor no-shows with automated appointment reminder

November 12th, 2008

Like most other medical practices, chiropractors struggle with patient no-shows, perhaps the biggest drain on medical practice revenue. When patients schedule appointment times and then do not show up or call at the last minute to cancel, that appointment time sits empty, and does not collect revenue. Since the practice must still pay the same staff and fixed costs regardless, it is important that patient no-shows be held to an absolute minimum, with zero no-shows the ideal. One of the best tools to improve patients showing up and being on time is to deliver appointment reminder calls. The short time it takes to make a telephone reminder call can mean the difference between no income and significant income and a satisfied patient.

Though the sensibility of the appointment reminder is obvious, there are limitations with live agents who are relied upon by many chiropractors to deliver them. Chiropractic receptionists must be multi-taskers. They deal with patient needs, phone calls, office tasks, and completing laborious and time consuming insurance claims paperwork. This leaves them sometimes stressed and overwhelmed. Based on the time involved and the stress and fatigue of live agents, human completion of appointment reminder calls can sometimes be inaccurate, moody, and not cost-effective for the practice.

Fortunately, a new reminder program is available. The automated appointment reminder can be a great revenue driver and service benefit for patients. Unlike live agents, an automated telephone reminder is extremely efficient and does not struggle with human emotions and fatigue. By using appointment reminder software to take care of tedious reminder calls, the chiropractor frees up the live agent to offer personalized care for complex needs and to complete other important tasks. Plus, the stress load for the employee is sure to be reduced.

Regarding cost-efficiency, the automated reminder solution wins again. The time it takes people to deliver and complete reminder calls is generally not as efficient as the automated appointment reminder. Combined with a moderate up front cost and little to no ongoing maintenance, the value of the virtual telephone reminder is unparalleled. The modest cost and potential reduction of patient no-shows can produce a great combination of business advantages for the chiropractor.

There are other relationship benefits that can be found in the top automated appointment reminder software solutions. A good solution allows the patient to cancel the appointment during the reminder call if necessary. Though maybe not ideal, this allows the chiropractor to fill the schedule void and not miss out on the revenue. This is obviously much better than a no-call and no-show appointment time. Another added-value feature is the ability to deliver notes about the appointment based on circumstances. The appointment reminder software can be set up to deliver messages to new patients, patients who need to make certain preparations, or other patients who require customized instructions or directions. All of these wonder communications opportunities offered by the best virtual appointment reminder programs are remarkable given the modest cost and low maintenance required.

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