Risk management classes, as taught by all malpractice carriers, tell us that the #1 way to lessen risk is by having a good patient relationship. One of the best ways to do this is Eaglesoft tip #3: discover & note what I call the “patient’s personal passion.”
Now, I’m not an Eaglesoft expert, but I do know three ways to utilize Eaglesoft to create growth. Two of these simple Eaglesoft tips, I previously shared with you. While, the third we’ll talk about today.
Simply put, the patient’s personal passion is what the patient likes to do and talk about.
Potentially, the topic(s) may be gardening, quilting, hunting, restoring cars, woodworking, grandkids, playing the piano, traveling, hiking . . . you get the point.
Discovering and notating this information in the patient’s record will help you build a meaningful relationship with the patient. Not only will the patient feel like you care by recalling personal information or a past discussion, but it also has the effect of building trust.
Plus, by talking about what the patient likes to talk about, it makes the patient feel good. And memories are always tied to emotions. Just think about your earliest memories. Good or bad, they’re tied to emotions. Similarly, your patients’ memories of your office will be based on how you made them feel, good or bad. As a result, they may not know much about you, if anything, but they’ll remember how they felt when they were in your office.
Hence, the importance of giving your team (front and back office) full authority and expectations to enter a patient’s personal passion into your Eaglesoft software at any time.
Almost all patients refer their family and friends due to their relationship with your office, not your crown margins or skills. Thus, recording and talking about the patient’s personal passion is critical. But how do you discover it?
Being inquisitive with practiced, scripted questions is the best way to collect this information from the patient. Please note, “practiced” and “scripted” are the key words here. Without a doubt, good communication comes through training. It’s important that your team knows what questions to ask in order to engage the patient and how to really listen to what the patient has to say.
For instance, 80% of patients don’t like their job. So, asking questions about their occupation isn’t going to be productive 9 times out of 10. (Unless they’re lucky enough to be in dentistry.) Also, asking yes-no questions versus open-ended questions is a surefire conversation killer.
My advice is to develop a list of open-ended questions and then have your team roleplay with them. Like so many other areas of dentistry, roleplaying is key to success.
Once the information is discovered, it’s time to notate it. The best place to do that is within the “notes” section of the patient’s record in your Eaglesoft software.
Both clinical and administrative team members are able to access this area of the software. And all should be encouraged to input this information at will, and always date it as well. Dating prevents you from talking about the new baby or Alaskan cruise 7 years later.
Lastly, it’s important that you train your team to be inquisitive, consistently notate & date the patient’s personal passion, and review it before seeing the patient again. By following this simple Eaglesoft tip, you will help your team to build meaningful relationships with your patients, lessen risk by increasing trust, and boost your office’s reputation!
If you're using Eaglesoft and you haven't read my previous articles (tips 1 & 2 from the list above), I highly recommend checking those out. Here are the links:
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