by Jenn Janicki
Executive Director Clinical Mastery Series
Join us for a 6 part series presenting “best practices”, collected from more than 130 practices, who are getting the yes to large case treatment plans. For clinicians who have a high level of clinical training and confidence but have not yet created a strategy for attracting comprehensively driven patients, or studied the psychology about what motivates people to make great treatment decisions, this series is for you!
Is your approach dated?
The old school method to case presentation is dated for today’s consumers. Objections – money, pain, time, is an age old reason for “why” patients do not say yes to treatment. It then became the clinician and team’s job to “overcome objections” as a strategy to case presentation.
I believe case acceptance is driven through many factors that include trust, influence and differentiation. And here is a dose of reality, there are MANY, MANY practices getting the yes to big comprehensive, implant, aesthetic and full mouth rehab cases, irregardless of “the economy.” Guess what? A common theme is they do not assume objections, they simply guide their patient to a great decision while allowing the patient to own their condition and decision!
Motivation is key
Perhaps, the easiest strategy to implement in your practice tomorrow is visually based treatment plans. It’s the physical piece of what the patient leaves your practice with after you have discussed treatment. If you are still providing a print out from your practice software or a generic financial arrangement form, you are really highlighting just 2 things; 1) the cost and 2) how many teeth you are presenting in their treatment plan. And maybe what specifically you are clinically doing, like #10 Porc Corwn or #31 MOD Onlay. Let me ask you a question and I hope you will take 60 seconds to answer it – What the heck is motivating about that?
Get patients to say YES
One constant in practices who are getting the “yes”, is their thoughtful approach to everything your patient experiences around their treatment consultation, with the end in mind.
I recommend developing a Treatment Plan template that makes it easy for your team to insert high quality pre-op photos, the problem or diagnosis, your discussed treatment in layman terms, the overall case fee and timing of appointments. This treatment plan that appears customized, is printed on a high quality photo paper along with adjunct patient education materials makes a powerful statement. Some practices are also using that same image in their electronic communication with their patient.
Here are the fundamental elements for what you will want to include on your Visual Treatment Plan:
(Bonus tip: This is where your relevant blog posts and services section that show example of your work and patient testimonials will be used to further create confidence in your patient.)
2. Utilize background and font colors that are congruent with your brand. Make your font easy to read.
2. Exquisite pre-op photographs that support your diagnosis and treatment plan. Circle in red or use a pointer graphic if needed for more subtle concerns like abfractions, wear, fractures or stand out pathology.
3. Diagnosis or Problem – a short description of what your findings are. Steer clear of dental jargon!!! You want it to be in understandable terms.
4. Short description of treatment plan – instead on saying Porcelain Jacket Veneers on tooth #4-13, consider Porcelain Restorations Upper 10 teeth. (Bonus tip: This helps you think like a patient, not a dentist in treatment plan presentation). Educate your patient thoroughly in consult but you want the language to be easy enough for the patient to explain to their spouse or friend on their Visual Treatment Plan. Visual examples of cases that you have completed give your patient a pre-view of what’s possible.
5. Case Fee in a lump sum and in a monthly payment form using Care Credit, Comprehensive Dental Finance etc.
Utilize the term Investment, not fee, cost, or price. Investment ; $28,130. Be specific. If some specifics are missing, for instance a specialist fee for implant placement portion, be sure you include at least an estimate. i.e. Investment $5k – 6k for bone grafting.
These custom templates are easy and affordable to set up in Powerpoint or Keynote. Once you have a created a template, any member of your team can build it for cases treatment big or small!
For more techniques and tips for successful patient communication, check out Ultimate Occlusion Level 3 on Treatment Planning and Case Presentation or for complete implementation, the Clinical Mastery Team Training Program!