Part of creating a pleasant experience for each patient includes measuring patient satisfaction. However, not all dental practices make a habit of asking patients for their feedback. The reason behind that has to do with the fact that dental practices are naturally busy and the staff might have a lot on their plates already—keeping the schedule on track while caring for patients at the same time. For this reason, members of the staff merely rely on their “gut feeling” on whether or not the patient was satisfied with his overall visit or not.
But why should dental practices bother with knowing if patients were satisfied or not? The answer to this is quite simple—happy, satisfied patients become loyal patients. On another level, loyal patients are more likely to refer the dental practice to their family and friends. If they were impressed with the dental practice’s services, then they won’t have second thoughts recommending you to the people they care about. But it is not all the time that you can make smiling individuals over all of your patients. Assessing the level of satisfaction that each patient feels after each appointment is necessary in nipping unwanted trends and help the practice grow.
A standardized manner of measuring patient satisfaction will prove most helpful to any dental practice. Not only is there a consistent manner of measuring satisfaction, front office workers do not have to conjure different questions for each patient and simplifying the task. There are six things that must be rated by each patient—(1) ease of getting treatment, (2) level of interaction with dentist and the team, (3) office facilities, (4) fair cost (5) chances of returning, and (6) likeliness to refer.
Asking your patients to rate you according to those issues will allow you to spot any kind of unwanted trend. For instance, if your most recent patients have been rating you low on dentist interaction then it might be high time to evaluate the current way that things are done. It could be that the dentist and the team have been using technical terms most of the time which leads to less comprehension on certain concepts for the patient.
Finally, how should the method of surveying patients be conducted? It can be verbal or written, depending on what the patient prefers. You can have questionnaires prepared which they can fill up after each visit. For busy individuals, you can ask for their email addresses and direct them to an online survey which they can do anytime. It is crucial for the front desk worker assigned to this task to explain why the dental practice has begun measuring patient satisfaction and how patients’ cooperation will benefit them in the long run.