Do's and don'ts for the scheduling coordinator: Reactivate inactive patients

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Many patients slip through the proverbial cracks. They cancel. They postpone. They fail to show. And then they don't reschedule. The practice gets busy and forgets about these patients, and, suddenly, they have become inactive.


Identify unscheduled patients and reach out to them. If they haven't been to the office in six months or longer, email them. Sometimes, a friendly reminder is all it takes. Mention all the benefits of regular hygiene care that they're missing. If you receive no response, email them two more times over two weeks.


Don't overlook the phone. Email can be tricky. Some people have multiple email accounts and only check their primary email every day. Also, spam filters can be notoriously touchy and gobble up perfectly legitimate emails. If patients haven't responded to your emails, pick up the phone and give them a call on their cell. Many patients will be happy to hear from you and glad to reschedule.

Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the founder and CEO of Levin Group, the leading dental practice consulting firm in North America. For the complete list of dates and locations where you can attend his latest seminar, visit

The comments and observations expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions of, nor should they be construed as an endorsement or admonishment of any particular idea, vendor, or organization.

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