Maximizing case acceptance

Nov. 1, 2010
Ken Runkle says when new patients enter your practice, the first and last person they see should be your treatment coordinator. If you want your case acceptance rates to rise, make sure your TC shares these three things with new patients.

by Ken Runkle, America’s Profitability Expert

Every day your mailbox is filled with offers promising to “take your practice to the next level” or “increase new patients” or “boost case acceptance.”

One massive benefit of having served dental practices for more than 25 years is that I’ve been able to see firsthand what really works and what doesn’t in many different practice environments throughout the country.

Start with a treatment coordinator

When new patients enter your practice, the first and last person they see should be your treatment coordinator.

What is a treatment coordinator?

A treatment coordinator can be any staff member trained by the doctor to effectively develop relationships with patients and successfully present cases.

Beginning and ending with a treatment coordinator allows new patients to develop a comfort level with someone in your practice while establishing trust. Studies show that we tend to bond with the first person we meet in new situations. For example, you may still be friends with the first person you met entering college or dental school. The treatment coordinator should be the first handshake and the last goodbye.

If you are unfamiliar with the role of a treatment coordinator (TC) in terms of case acceptance, let me briefly share some highlights. First, it is critical to understand that the TC must be a “raving fan” of the doctor and the practice. His or her level of passion will speak volumes to new patients. Secondly, the TC must always share the following information with new patients:

1. The history of the practice and how it has served the area with excellence.

2. The doctor’s bio and brag. The doctor should approve a three-sentence bio and brag statement that highlights his or her training and expertise.

3. The philosophy of the practice. This is a critical element that sets the tone for case acceptance. Below are four sample philosophical statements:

  • Doctor X is very conservative and if he says you need the treatment, I would recommend you pursue the treatment.
  • Our goal is always optimum oral health.
  • We practice Golden Rule Diagnostics, meaning that we treat you the way we would treat our own families.
  • We always take a long-term approach with your dental health, meaning we are willing to spread out your treatment over time.

Select, train, and begin using a treatment coordinator this month and watch your case acceptance rates begin to rise.

Author bio
Ken Runkle, America’s Profitability Expert, is the founder and president of Paragon Management, Inc., and has been helping dental practices reach peak profitability for 24 years.