Appointment No Shows


Are you finding that your “no shows” are increasing in your medical practice? Each time a patient does not show for their scheduled appointment, you lose money. One “no show” might not seem like much, but multiply that by the number of no shows during the week by 52. The dollars lost add up quickly.

In her book Secrets of the Best Run Practices, the nationally acclaimed healthcare consultant Judy Capko, addresses the issue. She recommends a review of the verbiage used when making reminder calls. What you communicate to confirm the appointments will make a difference. Using phrases such as “we’re expecting you,” or “we’ve dedicated this appointment to you” will remind a patient the importance of his/her appointment. Affirm for the patient that the appointment is a priority.

When a no show or missed appointment does occur, phrases such as “we’re concerned that you missed an appointment. It’s important that you come in.”

In addition to reminder calls prior to the appointment, be sure to mail registration packets to new patients prior to their appointment. This serves as a dual reminder for new patients with longer appointments. The old adage is true. It’s not just what you say, but how you say it. When you treat an appointment time as a priority, so will your patients.

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