She’s been your patient for years. Today she came in for re-care with some great looking veneers – which you didn’t do.
We’ve talked to many dentists over the years who have faced this exact situation. We hope it doesn’t happen to you. To prevent this, what do you need to do exactly?
Ask yourself if this patient actually and truly understood that you could have done that work. I’m going to just venture a guess here – she DID NOT know you could have done the work. Or she would have at least asked you if you thought veneers would be a good option for her, don’t you think?
I’m also going to bet that she, like many dental consumers, thought that cosmetic dentistry had to be done in a special dental office. Certainly not in a “regular” dental office.
So, somehow, some way she either wasn’t told that you could do the case or didn’t believe that you could do the case. Either way it’s a practice wide failure to effectively communicate.
Which brings up this question, which I admit sounds stupid at first, but let’s examine it. What do your patients think you do all day? Do you really think they are aware that you perform a multitude of different treatments and procedures each and every day?
Before you sat down with them in Op #1 were they aware that you just did a root canal? And prior to that performed a frenectomy, did a denture reline and had a sleep apnea consultation with a wife who couldn’t sleep because of her husband’s snoring?
No, they don’t know any of that. Not really. What do they think you DO anyway? Here’s the answer; they really only know what you did on THEM. Or their family.
That’s why it’s important that you do internal promotion, be it old fashioned paper newsletters or e-newsletters. You also should have printed material in your office on all the treatments you offer. Video loops running in the ops and reception areas, staff talking up how great Mr. Smith looks now that he finished his accelerated ortho. And all this need to be on your website and Facebook page too.
If they don’t know the scope of your expertise and treatments offered, they won’t think twice about going across the street to that “special” dentist who isn’t doing anything more or better than you can do.