Resolves Low Patient Attendance Rates
Saudi Arabia-Based Dental Clinic Resolves Low Patient Attendance Rates With a Multidirectional Correction Plan (2022)
One of the leading dental clinics in Saudi Arabia approached Theta Consultancy to address their problems with patient attendance rates. The clinic operates across different cities in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and offers the assurance of effective dental healthcare services. More than 3 billion people worldwide suffer due to oral diseases. In addition, dental health has also been associated with chronic health conditions such as diabetes, pulmonary disease and kidney disease.
The client is actively committed to achieving the vision of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for achieving quality improvements in dental healthcare by 2030. However, the client had been experiencing problems with patients missing their appointments. As a result, the clinic had to incur losses in revenue. Most important of all, the clinic had to block the schedules of doctors, which prevented them from attending to other patients.
The number of people going to dental clinics for routine visits has increased dramatically over the years. Increased demand for dental healthcare services has also resulted in substantial growth in the number of dentists for every 10,000 people. The number of dentists per 10,000 people was 5.6 in 2020 as compared to 4.4 in 2016. On top of it, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has also introduced new initiatives for increasing investments in the healthcare sector. However, the client was not able to capitalize on opportunities in this market due to patient attendance rates.
The first course of action in addressing the client’s requirements involved a comprehensive evaluation of the client’s business operations. Over the course of 3 months, we collected qualitative and quantitative data associated with People, Processes and Technology of the client. Here is an overview of the specific areas covered in the data collection process.
· People data included information about employees and customers.
· Process data included information about the operating procedures.
· Technology data featured information about the call center system, technology integrations, patient management systems and scheduling system.
The clear and comprehensive analysis of People, Process and Technology data pointers helped us identify multiple inefficiencies of the client. We recognized the following factors responsible for the low patient attendance rates at the client clinics in different cities.
· Inefficient call center management with lapses in accountability, responsibilities, quality assurance and management of worker shifts.
· Inadequate staff training initiatives.
· Limited communication among departments.
· Lack of updates in the standard operating procedures.
· Under-utilization of available technology facilities.
· Lack of integration between different systems.
· Higher maintenance costs and limited features in the system.
The evaluation of the factors causing problems with patient attendance helps us develop a plan for addressing the client’s problem. We discussed the action plan for our solution with the client and received their approval for implementing strategic remedies. The journey of implementing our remedial action plan spanned a duration of around three months.
We started the correction action plan with a revision of the standard operating procedure according to modern trends, technologies and patient behavior patterns. The next crucial step in our solution for the client’s low patient attendance rate problem focused on training for the staff, including clinic staff as well as management and call center staff.
In terms of technology improvements, we offered an effective solution for integration of all systems used by the client. At the same time, we also replaced one of the technologies without any additional costs for the clinic.
We monitored all the clinics of the client in different cities in Saudi Arabia for two months after implementing our correction plan. In addition, we delivered weekly reports regarding the improvements in performance of the clinics to the management.
Within a gap of six months, the number of patients skipping their dental appointments at the client’s clinics reduced to 13%.
The correction plan helped in improving operational efficiency of the client through comprehensive training for clinic staff and call center staff. Effective integration between systems helped the management find productive solutions for monitoring the performance of all operations of the clinic. For example, call center staff and management training contributed to plausible improvements in quality assurance.
Revision of conventional standard operating procedures also helped the client improve communication among departments. Our correction plan not only served as a proven solution for low patient attendance rates but also prepared the client for long-term growth. We helped the clinic uncover the potential of technology and the most effective ways to use it to its advantage.
Power in Numbers