Why question it?

QuestionsSheila Scott talks membership plans and their powerful health benefit to patients.

I can’t understand why every private practice doesn’t have a robust patient membership plan in place and is working extra hard to encourage patients to join up.

The benefits to both patient and practice are enormous. Plans can guarantee your income, whilst also, if branded to your practice, maintain a bond with your patients, as well as providing insurance cover for patients.

Whilst all of this is good news, we must not forget the most powerful reason for signing patients up to a membership plan is simply that it is the best way to keep patients healthy, a message that must be at a practice’s core.

Regular dental health

The practice that believes it is doing its absolute best for patients can only really do so long term if it can keep patients coming back for regular dental health checks.

We all know that, with a few exceptions, all private patients will let these essential regular appointments slip from time to time – or every time – and therefore the practice doesn’t get a chance to keep these patients optimally healthy.

A membership plan is a simple way for a practice to organise regular dental health checks and hygiene visits, enabling the patient to engage more readily with their dental health, as they will tend not to let their appointments slip.

I know, from countless research audits completed in practices, that membership plan patients suffer fewer breakdowns in dental health and pay less in the long term. Practices have recorded differences from 30% to as high as 100% – but each practice should really do its own audit and communicate their difference to patients.

Financial sense

Membership patients do also spend more in practices on their regular appointments as they attend more often; and we’re seeing trends in many practices where membership patients are spending more on elective or cosmetic treatments.

When considering a plan provider, the key is to look for one who is committed to building a long-lasting and mutually beneficial relationship – like Practice Plan – rather than one based on short-term gain. Smoothly setting up and administering your plan should be a given, so consider the additional business support you might need and seek out the one who will listen to your needs.

In short, which part of ‘This is the best way we can organise to keep you dentally healthy. This membership plan is designed to make sure you get your money’s worth, and that keeps you on schedule so we can keep an eye on your dental health’ doesn’t make a patient think that membership might be worth considering, and a practice think it’s not worth the encouragement?

Practice Plan is a specialist provider of practice-branded patient membership plans and an increasingly significant source of wider business support services for dentistry. Over the years, Practice Plan has helped thousands of dentists introduce membership plans and develop business strategies.

If you’d like to know more about how Practice Plan could help you make a greater success of your practice, visit www.practiceplan.co.uk or call 01691 684165.

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