Every practice struggles with patients who don't show up for their appointments. It costs your practice money, time, and is not good for the patient's well-being. Find out how one practice was able to cut their no-show rate in half.
Camarillo All EyeCare, located in Southern California, offers family-focused optometry services. The staff strives to provide the highest level of care and use the latest in eye care technology and quality products. When the team of doctors bought the practice from a retiring provider, they saw the benefits patient communication software could bring to the practice, and decided to implement Solutionreach.
When Dr. Brian Nguyen, OD, and the team of doctors at Camarillo All EyeCare took over the practice from a retiring doctor, they had the opportunity to add communication technology into the practice.
“We brought in an EHR system and Solutionreach all at once,” says Dr. Nguyen. “It was kind of a big change for us.”
One of the most immediate effects Dr. Nguyen saw was in the process the staff used for reminding patients of their appointments.
“My staff was setting aside about 30 minutes every day. One person was designated the role to call, confirm, and schedule appointments,” Dr. Nguyen states. “We have basically eliminated that now because Solutionreach does it for us.”
The staff at Camarillo All EyeCare personalized the appointment reminders automatically sent, so patients receive a reminder two weeks before and again four days before the appointment to ensure patients don’t miss their scheduled time.
“Overall, our no-show rate has decreased by about 50 percent with Solutionreach,” says Dr. Nguyen.
Other manual processes, like contacting patients to remind them they need to schedule an annual exam, were also made easier with Solutionreach. The practice was sending postcards once a month to patients who were due to be seen, and then the staff would try to contact patients who hadn’t scheduled an appointment.
“Eventually, we’d get the appointment scheduled,” says Dr. Nguyen. “But the biggest difference between our postcard and the message from Solutionreach is the fact that Solutionreach sends multiple messages, so the patient response is a little bit more urgent.”
With Solutionreach, the staff is able to send an automated survey to each patient two days after their appointment. The practice has sent over one thousand surveys, and has used the responses to improve their practice.
“One of our goals was to take care of each other and take care of our patients, so I wanted to get survey responses from patients complimenting the staff,” explains Dr. Nguyen. “I really pushed them to build relationships, and there was a shift in the reviews from talking about the doctor to praising the staff. From that change, we’ve also noticed a growth in our business as well.”
Dr. Nguyen also stays connected with patients between visits by sending newsletters through Solutionreach.
“Every two months, I’m sending an educational newsletter,” says Dr. Nguyen. “They are usually questions frequently asked by our patients and our team of three doctors provides the answers.”
Dr. Nguyen and the other doctors pay attention to the topics patients bring up, and work together to create a newsletter focusing on those areas to educate their patients.
“There are a lot of patients who say they have gone to the emergency room for an eye related issue,” Dr. Nguyen explains. “They don’t know they can be seen quicker through their optometrist, who has the equipment to handle eye emergencies. That’s partly our fault for not educating them, so the next newsletter is going to be catered toward telling patients to come see us in an emergency.”
For Dr. Nguyen and the rest of the staff at Camarilllo All EyeCare, Solutionreach has been worth the investment and made their office processes run more smoothly.
“Solutionreach has converted our tedious, time-consuming, mundane office routine into much easier, efficient, effective, and enjoyable tasks,” says Dr. Nguyen.
To learn more about reducing no-shows in your own practice, read, "No Shows, No More."