Office Magic Newsletter
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The Lazy Dentist Chimes In
Mike nets more than any other dentist I know! Hands down and bar none. Does that mean his way is best? Hardly. But it does mean that when he speaks, we ought to listen.
"There are many practice management gurus who recommend against doing first-visit prophies, even if the patient requests one. I strongly disagree. Cleaning teeth is not harmful; it is helpful to patients. If a patient wants her teeth cleaned, then you should be able to give the patient what she wants. One objection is that you might not know how much time to set aside for the prophy, but that can be true for any patient, even long-time patients. We usually set aside 45 minutes. If that's not enough time, we can always schedule the patient back after the time is up. If 45 minutes is too much time, then there are other tasks the hygienist can do before her next patient.
"Those who advocate against first-visit prophies mention that if a new patient calls requesting one, then you can go into an elaborate explanation why it's best for the patient not to have a first-visit prophy. One advantage of offering first-visit prophies is that you never have to act defensive by giving such an explanation to patients; you also do not have to train your staff how to give such an explanation. Remember how difficult it is to schedule patients to begin with. It is even worse if you defensively have to explain to patients why they can't have what they want."
Get Mike's book. You won't agree with everything he advocates, but I personally guarantee that you will find all kinds of very specific ways to to make your own practice more profitable. Call his office at (302) 655-1228 and ask for the special "Brotherly Bonus" with your copy of The Lazy Dentist in the New Millenium. You'll be overloaded with way to slash your overhead and make your office more efficient by half.
Next, we'll hear another opinion on this issue, someone else whose opinion we respect.
Another Opinion on First-Visit Prophies
Richard Erickson attends more continuing education than anyone I know, so he can bring you Dental Update, the newsletter that's more like a full color book you get every month. Here is what he has to say on this topic.
"Patients are in the midst of a major anxiety attack when they call a new dentist for their first appointment. So when your front desk immediately confronts them with, 'We don't clean your teeth on the first visit,' it's an immediate turn-off. We dentists may understand but patients have no idea of the 'value' of being comprehensively examined on the first visit then having to come back a second time to 'get their teeth cleaned.'
"If you're worried about proper sequencing of treatment of periodontal disease to keep the insurance company happy, GET REAL, the insurance industry has NEVER fairly paid benefits for non-surgical perio treatment so why even worry about it? Once trust and rapport begin forming during the first visit, their treatment needs can be addressed and unfair limitations of insurance coverage can be pointed out."
Dental Update is a comprehensive review of everything happening at meetings and in journals everywhere. Dan Kennedy promises a "seminar in every issue" of his marketing newsletter, and Richard certainly fulfills this promise in his dental newsletter. You'll stay on top of the best tips out there without having to attend everything yourself. Call 770.973.9824 or email email@example.com to subscribe today. Mention Office Magic and you'll get a packet of free back issues.
Coming Next Month
"Parting is such sweet sorrow."
That's a line from the play "Romeo and Juliet," by William Shakespeare. Juliet is saying good night to Romeo. Their sorrowful parting is also sweet because it makes them think about the next time they will see each other.
And now you know the rest of the story.
Pat, Lorraine, and Ginny
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