Missed your appointment?
That’ll be $50, please.
No-shows and late arrivals are common and frustrating problems for many healthcare service providers. They cause gaps in scheduling, reduce revenue, and make it difficult to run an efficient practice.
Increasingly, many doctors are turning to no-show fees to curb instances of patients not arriving for their appointments or showing up late. On the one hand, it makes sense: missed appointments alone cost the U.S. economy an estimated $150 billion annually. But that doesn’t mean punishing your patients is the best way to solve the problem. Instead, increasing your communication with patients prior to their appointment through automated appointment reminders and confirmations can ensure they show up, without any heavy lifting on you or your staff.
Automate Appointment Communication
According to an informal survey we conducted in 2015 that examined 178,000 random messages:
Implementing an automated messaging and reminder system for appointments reduced no-shows by nearly 50% across all providers.
That no-show reduction translates to huge pay gains, simply by having more people show up for your services.
Increase the Effectiveness of Your Reminders
Based on our survey, we also identified several best practices that were used to further reduce no-shows and improve doctor appointment confirmations.
The data showed:
Appointment confirmations made via phone, email, or SMS were 90% reliable (i.e. only 10% were ultimately rescheduled.)
SMS messaging is the most reliable channel for delivering such messages, with a 30% reply rate for appointment confirmations vs. 23% for phone calls and 12% for emails.
Reminders sent via SMS at 6 p.m. the day prior to the appointment worked best, with only 6.5% of customers receiving messages at that time rescheduling.
Personalized messages that reinforced the importance of the appointment and/or provided critical details (directions, parking, etc.) performed better than generic reminders.
These tools are easily implemented with Apptoto, putting appointment control back in your hands. We even offer HIPAA-compliant text reminders.
Try it for free today!