COVID Patient Scripts and Talking Points for Your Front Desk Team

As part of your post-COVID-19 re-opening process, it is important that every person on your team communicates the same message to patients. Create your practice policies and protocols, outline messages to communicate for each protocol; then, script these messages so everyone speaks in the same “voice.”

Affordable Care + Dental Membership Plans

Talking Points

  • We are going to help you afford your dental care.
  • We understand . . . and we have a lot of options to help you afford your treatment.
  • We accept the following credit cards. We also offer financing through CareCredit (or other). I would be happy to help you with the process. We also have a practice membership plan that you can use for your entire family….

Dental Membership Plan Script

“We offer our patients a really great dental membership plan to help make dental care more affordable to everyone. There are no deductibles, waiting periods, or limits on procedures. You receive discounts on services and we have an affordable option for everyone in your family.  I’d be happy to help you get started!”

 

Cancellations + No-Show policies

Talking Points

Identify your fee policy for no-shows or cancellations and incorporate it into your script. 

Cancellation + No-Show Policy Scripts

Option 1

“Additionally, we are asking all of our patients to give us two-day notice for cancellations. We just have so many patients who are trying to schedule appointments and we are doing everything we can to get everyone in as quickly as possible. Every appointment time is so incredibly important.”

Option 2

“Because we are required to schedule fewer patients each day, every appointment is important to those who need to be seen. If you need to reschedule or cancel your appointment for any reason, please give us two-day notice so we can give that appointment time to another patient in need.”

Expanded Hours and Days

Talking Points

  • We have expanded hours to help you get the dental care you need without sacrificing any more time away from work.

Extended Hours and Days Script

Do you have any other days or hours available?

“Yes! We added more hours/days to help you receive treatment when it is most convenient for you. We’ve added …. What days and times are best for you?”

Emergencies and Telehealth

Talking Points

  • We are always accessible to care for you, even during off-hours. 
  • It is very easy to consult with us. We have listed our cell phones on our answering machine for the hours we are not in the office. Just call or text Dr. Smith directly during our off-hours and he/she will assess your situation and health.  He may ask you to text him/her photos or even FaceTime with you before asking you to come in for an emergency appointment. 
  • We can help you via our teledentistry portal. It’s simple.  Just…. (list directions)

Safety and Health

Talking Points        

  • It is safe to come back to our office.
  • You’re safe under our care.
  • We promise to take care of your dental health and keep you safe and healthy
  • Your health and safety come first.
  • You are our priority. Your health is our priority.
  • You are part of our family. We promise to keep our family safe.
  • This is a new normal for all of us, but as health practitioners, we have always practiced safety and infection control protocols. As a medical practice, we also have a new normal and we are doing everything we can on our end to keep you and our team safe.

Safety and Health Script

Is it safe to come to your office?

Yes, it is safe!  We have always practiced infection control standards, and we are doing so many more things since COVID-19 to ensure you (and our team) are safe and healthy.  To ease your mind, these are just a few things we are doing to protect you . . .

Safety and Infection Control

Talking Points

  • As health practitioners, dentists follow all CDC and Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) guidelines for infection control.
  • We implement hospital-level sterilization here at our practice.
  • When you visit our office, we may look a little different to keep everyone safe! We have increased our Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). So, now when we treat you, we will be wearing a surgical mask, gloves, gown, hat, and face shield.
  • We will be asking you to keep us safe as well, by asking screening questions before and when you arrive, taking your temperature, asking you to wear a mask…

Safety and Infection Control Script

What are you doing to keep me safe when I get there?

We have always practiced infection control standards, and we are doing so many more things since COVID-19 to ensure you (and our team) are safe and healthy. To ease your mind, here are just a few things we are doing to protect you . . .”

Pre-Appointment Instructions

Talking Points

Outline your updated pre-appointment instructions.

Pre-Appointment Scripts

Option 1

“You are scheduled for (date). Now, I’m going to walk you through our new patient visit protocols so you know what to expect before and when you get here. First, we will be calling you and texting a few more times than normal to continue assessing your health. . . Then, when you arrive . . .”

Option 2

“We added a special page to our website that will walk you through exactly what to expect when you arrive for your appointment. Just click on our COVID-19 tab and go to the Post-COVID-19 Appointment page. Please don’t hesitate to call us at any time and we’ll be happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have.”

Scheduling patients is taking longer

Talking Points

List what your scheduling changes are for your specific practice.

Scheduling Delay Scripts

“Can’t you get me in sooner?” 

Option 1

“We would love to get you in sooner!  Due to the new CDC guidelines, we have reduced the number of patients we can see each day to help keep everyone safe. This means that we need to schedule appointments a few days later than we normally would, but I promise, it is for your safety and ours! We have an opening on (insert date and time). I can schedule you then. Does that sound good?”

Option 2

“It may take us a few more days than it normally does to schedule your new patient visit but we want you to know that we follow all of the CDC’s guidelines.  So, you can rest assured that you will be safe while you are here.  We have a new patient appointment on (insert date) . . .”

INSURANCE

Ensure every person at your front desk is communicating the same message about your insurance acceptance policy. 

Do you take my insurance?

If you accept but are not in-network 

  • Option 1

Yes. We do accept that insurance but we are not in-network. However, we have a lot of patients who come here with that same plan, and they only pay a nominal difference in fees (if this is accurate for your plans). I would be happy to call your insurance for you and get a complimentary benefit review so that we can guarantee your insurance will work the same way.  We have an appointment available on (xxxxx), will that work for your schedule?

  • Option 2

Yes! We do accept that insurance but we’re not considered in-network. We have a lot of patients who come here with that same plan. We’re happy to file any claims for you, so we make it as easy as possible. We also have financing options like CareCredit to help make your payments more affordable, and we’d be happy to help you complete the CareCredit steps. We have an appointment available on (xxxxx), will that work for your schedule?

If you are not in-network with any insurance plans

  • Option 1

Yes, we do accept your insurance.  We are not in-network with any insurance plans but we have so many patients here with (list the plan name). We always work to file any claims for you, so we make it as easy as possible. 

  • Option 2

Yes, we do accept your insurance!  We are not in-network with any insurance but we file insurance claims to (list the plan name) all the time. We also have financing options like CareCredit to help make your payments more affordable, and we’d be happy to help you complete the CareCredit steps!

Remember, your marketing strategy brings new patients to your door.  It is your front desk phone strategy that helps convert prospects into lifelong, loyal patients.  Contact us today if you would like a front desk phone audit. 

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