Best Dental Recall Systems in Detail
What do the best dental recall systems have in common? Let’s begin with a solid hygiene schedule. A strong call list for schedule changes. Patients schedule their next hygiene appointments ahead of time. And any unscheduled hygiene patients receive calls. Continuing care settings are accurate. Patient retention is high. The dentist’s schedule soars. Then, the dental practice grows.
The Many Pieces of Solid Recall
There are many pieces to bring together. Miss one piece of the recall system and you miss the goal. Of course, the ultimate goal is exceptional patient care. Dental practice growth and expansion is the result. Excellent systems bring excellent results. Exceptional patient care and practice growth. So, how do we get there?
Continuing Care Settings are Accurate
If continuing care settings are wrong, the whole system is broken. Take the time to get this piece right. The computer system is going to give back what you put in. And you want to know who is due for what. Which you can’t do if the continuing care setting is wrong. Is your patient due for a perio maintenance or a prophy? This is critical information.
It’s also helpful for x-rays and exams. At a glance, you want to know who needs x-rays. And you also want to know who is due for an exam. The last thing you want is to review each patient’s history in detail.
Best Dental Recall Systems Are Clean
Keeping this clean takes some work. People make mistakes. So, it’s important to look at continuing care settings for each patient. But this can be done when they are in the office. Or this can also be checked when running reports. For example, when running continuing care reports, this is a great time to double-check on things.
Accurate settings provide great reports. But be sure to clean out these settings for inactive patients. You don’t want continuing care settings on patients’ charts who have left the practice. Keep this as clean as possible for the best report results.
Hygiene Patients Are Pre-Scheduled
I believe the best dental hygiene systems schedule patients in advance. Even though I recently read this is “old-school” and “old-fashioned”, I still believe in it. Maybe because I have never done it any other way. But it works!
Schedule patients out for their 3 or 4 month recall visits. And be sure they are set for 2 more appointments. Patients with periodontal conditions need to stay on track. You can even tell your patients this when you schedule. Stress the importance of staying on track.
Best Dental Recall Systems Include Reminders
Tell your patients they will get reminders. Hopefully, you are using an automated system to help you. Set up your reminder system so they get plenty of notice. I still send old-fashioned postcards a month in advance. Then text message reminders 2 weeks ahead. Followed by more text message reminders 2 days out. One final text reminder the day of the appointment.
Best Dental Recall Systems in 7 Steps
- Continuing Care Settings Are Accurate
- Hygiene Patients Are Scheduled In Advance
- Unscheduled Hygiene Patients Are Contacted Systematically
- Strong Call List & System To Fill Open Appointments
- Reschedule Policy Is Communicated As Each Hygiene Appointment Is Made
- Inactive Patients Are Routine Inactivated
- Hygiene Numbers Are Monitored