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Increasing Patient Visits

Dec 01, 2020

Hi, I'm Dave Kats therapist, consultant. I have a tip for you.

The last few weeks we've been talking about how to build your practice. We said there's only four ways to build your practice. You got to get more new patients, you got to get more patient visits, you got to provide more for services and you got to do better job on collections. Any one of those will build your practice. Today we're going to talk about how to increase your patient visits.

The first thing is to simply schedule more if you're not scheduling enough. Some therapists don't schedule enough visits. Most get therapists for the average condition schedule about 18 visits. If you're only scheduling four visits, naturally, you won't be doing as much as far as patient visits are concerned. It's like the old vaudeville joke and said, "Doctor, it hurts when I do this," and the doctor says, "Well, then don't do it." You want to see more patients then schedule more visits, that kind of thing. Only do that, of course, if you're not scheduling enough. You don't want to ever do anything for the patient that isn't in the best interest of the patient.

What other things can you do to improve your patient visits? There are two major things you can do. One is you can give a written report. On the second visit, when the patient comes in, you say, "Jean, I sat down last night and I thought about your depression. I went over what we talked about during our first visit. I put together a plan of care that I think it's going to help us a lot. Here's what I put down." You tell them what you saw as far as symptoms and diagnosis and things like that. You say, "Now, as far as your schedule, I think I'm going to see you about three times to get a good history on this. Then I'm going to do this and this and this."

That'll be a total of 18 visits and you tell them how many visits you're going to see them. That's the plan of care. It's a written brochure. You can make your own, or you can order them from us. The second thing that you need to do then is advanced multiple schedule the patient. On the second visit, they come in, you give them that written report. You do the counseling. Then at the end of the visit, you had advanced mobile schedule, all those visits. You say, "Jean now, I think we wrote down that we were going to see you 18 times. Are you ready, are you willing to work 18 times to get this depression under control?"

She says, "Yes," you say, "Okay. We're going to do this a week apart, a week at a time, we'll do about a 45 or 50-minute session. Let's go ahead and get those scheduled right now." You take a calendar that has 365 days on it. You circle the 18 visits for her. You photocopy, you keep a photocopy, you give one to her and you scheduled all 18 visits at one time. It's the best way. People that do these two things. You have a written plan of care and advanced mobile schedule say this all very frequently, "My practice went up about 30% and it's never gone back down."

If you want to improve your patient visits, schedule enough, first of all, give a written plan of care so they understand what's going on. They see the light at the end of the tunnel. Then advanced multiple schedule them so you have your commitment right after you give them that plan of care.

This is Dave Kats. Thanks for listening.

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