This article is sponsored content brought to you by Centaur.
Why extending patient care beyond the practice is now vital to the success of a dental business
To maintain a thriving dental practice, it is now essential that practitioners do more than provide outstanding dental treatment to their patients. The patient journey has become far more complex with today’s digital technology. We have entered the Age of Experience, where customer experience has overtaken price and product as the key brand differentiator.
Customer expectations are at an all-time high, and they expect positive, memorable experiences in all areas of their lives, including visiting the dentist. If practices are not delivering positive outcomes in all aspects leading up to the appointment, the actual appointment and most importantly, after the appointment, patients may very likely move to a competitor for a better experience.
What this means for the patient experience is a new requirement for more touchpoints outside the practice, not only to meet the new benchmark of patient expectations, but to foster essential loyalty and trust. Focusing on the patient experience is the clear way to build great relationships, keeping patients coming back year after year, while referring family and friends along the way.
Today, post-treatment care is central to the overall patient experience. Typically, with traditional aftercare efforts, patients receiving a follow-up phone call are only those who have had more involved treatment. For the rest, the next time they hear from the practice is the reminder for a six-month check-up.
If a patient’s perceived experience of their previous visit didn’t meet their expectations, or they’re dissatisfied to have heard from the practice only when they’re due to return, they may be reluctant to respond. In both cases, the practice team would be none the wiser.
This is not an uncommon problem faced by dental practices. Many struggle to find time to reach out to patients between visits. However, if the only interaction with patients is in the practice or when it’s time to schedule an appointment, practices may be missing two crucial opportunities: one, to create strong, enduring connections based on extended post-treatment care; and two, to address even the most minor post-treatment concerns before they develop into more serious issues – clinical or otherwise.
Re-engaging with patients after they have left the practice is the perfect opportunity to make meaningful contact again, turning this touchpoint into a valuable part of the patient journey. Dental practices that stay active in contacting their patients more often stand a better chance of not only building patient satisfaction and loyalty, but also better positioning themselves to earn glowing online reviews. Checking in with patients after visits, showing that the practice team truly cares about their well-being, allows practice-patient relationships to be built on trust. This rapport then becomes the key ingredient shaping the tone of a practice’s online reputation – strong bonds yield positive reviews.
PatientCare, an innovative solution brought to the Australian market by Centaur Software, simplifies the post-treatment care process by ensuring that every patient is left feeling looked after, after every visit, allowing practices to not only meet, but exceed the expectations of today’s experience-focused patient.
PatientCare personalises follow-up messages to each patient, tailoring the questions based on the treatment they received. Patient concerns or feedback are then sent back to the practice to act upon if necessary. After the recovery phase is complete, and feedback has been collected, patients are encouraged to leave an online review.
For higher patient satisfaction and retention, enhanced operational efficiency, increased referrals, and an improved online reputation, PatientCare is the all-in-one solution.