In 2012, while Mike and I were at a financial planning course, the speaker tasked us with making a list of all the areas where we were bleeding money and resources.
Having recently stepped out of patient care to help manage our growing practice, I recognized a huge inefficiency in our front office. Cancellations were high, and our schedule utilization was super low. To me it meant that we weren’t helping the number of patients we should have been and as a long-time PT, that was very upsetting.
I decided at that moment that THIS was going to be my focus; improving patient arrivals and schedule utilization by helping my front office team improve their ability to managed patients effectively.
I set a one month goal to have a day where the schedule was completely full before the start of the day, AND then have every single patient show up for their scheduled appointment. This meant we would be 100% efficient AND 100% effective in helping patients see how important it was to show up for care.
I shared this idea with my front office team and they were on board and accepted the challenge. It was ‘game on’!
But, how could we achieve this monumental goal when our arrivals were running between 70-80%?
It seemed like such hefty, impossible goal that we decided to call it a ‘Pink Unicorn Day' because unicorns are rate, mystical creatures and well, the likelihood of having a day where the schedule was completely full and there were no cancellations felt as impossible as seeing a pink unicorn!!
Have you ever felt that way about something?
To help my team achieve their hefty goal, I knew I needed to teach them how take their customer service and patient management skills to the highest possible level; and that meant taking a long hard look at what it takes to get patients vested in their care and willing to show up as scheduled. It also meant revamping our entire front office training and improving our systems, so we could better manage our patients and stay on top of their care.
I started working with my team on patient-focused customer service and began building better systems for patient management; something we hadn’t seen anywhere else.
It led to front office training and systems like no other and within several weeks, we had achieved our first pink unicorn day, 100% arrivals on top of a totally full schedule! Needless to say, we did a happy dance that Friday afternoon when all 30 spots were filled, and every single patient showed up as scheduled. Going from a 25-30% cancellation rate to no cancellations was a HUGE win for us.
Once our team had their first pink unicorn day, there was no stopping them. We went from an average 75-80% arrival rate to a consistent 95%, week after week. As the practice has grown from 30 visits per day to well over 80 visits per day, my training program has been used to train and retrain our front office team. And now that I’m working with other practices, I’m finding it works for any size practice!
Want to have a ‘Pink Unicorn Day’ like Panetta Physical Therapy? Keep reading!!
Let’s take a look at Panetta Physical Therapy. They’ve been working on my Patient Arrivals Program for the past 8 weeks and have worked diligently to implement my one-of-a-kind cancellation program and patient management systems. Like many PT practices, Panetta never had a cancellation program that they felt comfortable implementing with every patient across their 4 clinics…UNTIL NOW. Their investment is training their front office teams has been well worth the time and effort. Their team now has the skills needed to prevent same-day cancellations and effectively handle those patients that do cancel. They now have scripts and training to get a new hire on board quickly and they can even use this for retraining and staff compliance year to year.
In just 2 weeks of implementing my cancellation program, Panetta PT saw one of their clinics jump from 70% arrivals to 93% FOR THE WEEK! And last week, their Roslyn office had their very first Pink Unicorn Day! In fact, it’s game on for the entire Panetta PT team and I’m quite certain that before we’re done, every single one of their clinics will achieve 93% arrivals and have had at least one pink unicorn day…I’m thinking I need to invest in t-shirts that say… “I’m a Front Office GURU!”
My Patient Arrivals Program isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s for practices that want to excel and are ready to take it to the next level, practices that see how important it is to have a well-trained front office team who can and will help their patients get the care they need, practices that see their purpose as PEOPLE HELPED not money generated, and practices that are willing to invest the time and do what it takes to implement proven training and systems.
This program isn’t just about customer service, it’s about providing your front office team with the skills necessary to help more patients get the care they need, to get patients scheduled and keep them on the schedule – not because you want a full schedule but because your true goal is helping more people get the results they’re looking for. Let’s face it, most patients don’t understand how physical therapy can help but with my Patient Arrivals Program, your front office team will understand how they help your patients and they’ll be able to help more people through better patient management and front office systems.
If you’re ready to take it to a new level, let’s talk.
Because your front office team is the FIRST and LAST point of contact with every patient and potential patient. Without a well-trained, well-organized front office team, it’s awfully hard to help more people get the care they need. SCHEDULE a FREE Discovery Call and learn how you can have a PINK UNICORN DAY just like Panetta Physical Therapy!