Case acceptance is a critical factor in practice success. And just like anything else that is worth having, it's not easy. It takes time and effort. The good news is that practices that excel in the area of case acceptance have found a formula that works time and time again. This formula includes five critical factors that, when adopted and made a part of your case presentation regime, will increase your confidence and case acceptance rate.
Five key factors need to be considered and studied by every practice to ensure a high level of case acceptance. Ready to create your own formula for practice success? Consider the following five factors to help maximize your case acceptance:
1. Make a commitment to ideal diagnosis
Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the executive founder of the Dental Business Study Clubs.
Our research suggests that 81% of general dental practice appointments are for single-tooth treatment. There are certainly patients who only need a single tooth treated, and some patients who don't need any dentistry, but having more than 8 out of 10 appointments in a practice focused only on the treatment of a single tooth is too high.
All new patients should be thoroughly examined and diagnosed for any possible treatment. This includes periodontal treatment, tooth examination, cosmetic dentistry, implant dentistry, and occlusal dentistry. By evaluating these five categories and any other service categories offered by the practice, new patients are aware of all possible services and options.
2. Customer service
Offices often overestimate the level of customer service they provide. A new book that I'm writing on the topic of customer service speaks to the fact that many offices' ratings are actually 3 points out of 10 lower when patients provide the rating versus when it is provided by the staff.
Case presentation begins with creating five-star customer service. The higher the level of customer service, the better the patient experience and chance that the patient will consider treatment recommendations.
“Case presentations need to be in a private, calm, and focused environment.”
3. Focus on the patient
Many practices are stressed, chaotic, and running late. You may be used to this but patients aren't. Case presentations need to be in a private, calm, and focused environment. This means that the doctor or treatment coordinator should be uninterrupted, relaxed, and completely focused on that patient.
4. Body language
Recently, one of our analysts was visiting a practice and had the opportunity to sit in on a case presentation. Within five minutes, she could see that the doctor wanted to be anywhere else but there. He was slouching in his chair, not maintaining eye contact with the patient, and looking at the door. At the end of the presentation, the patient said that she would think about it and get back to him.
Regardless of how well you verbally present a case, body language speaks volumes. When presenting cases, the doctor or treatment coordinator should enter the room, give a big smile, create eye contact, shake the patient's hand, and give them a big greeting. Doctors and treatment coordinators should then sit up straight in a chair, look attentive, smile regularly, and lean forward. All of this works to create a sense of energy, and energy creates trust.
Finally, be sure not to cross your arms and legs. This sends a message of you being closed off to other options, hearing what the patient has to say or ask, or allowing the patient to participate in the treatment presentation.
5. Emphasize benefits
Clinical details by themselves don't win over patients -- benefits do. Patients will always want to know what the procedure will do for them. Clinical details shouldn't dominate the discussion during case presentation because saying yes to treatment is nearly always an emotional decision.
Mastering case presentation
Any dentist or treatment coordinator can learn to master the formula of case presentation for maximum case acceptance. However, it takes commitment and practice. Highly successful offices have mastered case presentation, which contributes heavily to overall practice production and profit. More important, when patients are highly satisfied and accepting treatment, dental practice is more fun.
Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the executive founder of the Dental Business Study Clubs. He has written 65 books and more than 4,300 articles.
The comments and observations expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions of DrBicuspid.com, nor should they be construed as an endorsement or admonishment of any particular idea, vendor, or organization.
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