Patient retention: Data doesn’t lie

Why do your patients return? 

You probably have a good idea of why your regular or long-term patients come to you. It’s because you’re good at what you do, they like you, they feel better. 

Now, let’s look at the other side of the equation. Why do patients NOT return? 

That’s a trickier question, to which there are several answers.  

As chiropractors, we know that patient retention is a big deal. After all, we know it’s better to have as many regular patients as possible, rather than having to constantly look for new ones.  

It’s a difficult thing to measure. That’s why we created the Active Patient Retention system. You can’t manage what you can’t measure.  

How does it work? Turns out, we’ve created a formula that gives you a number, a key performance indicator, to quantify how well you’re doing. 

The Active Patient Retention KPI focuses on the first 12 weeks of your relationship with a new patient. 

Dr. Nathan Unruh and Dr. Doug Sea lay out the details in the latest SIDECAR Fuel Tank, which you can watch here

In the big picture, we know that increasing this KPI means more money on your bottom line.  

It’s not just about the money. 

Retention is a reflection of your operations and communication. Often overlooked is a third factor, which is our beliefs as doctors, says Dr. Unruh. 

“What belief systems are limiting our ability to serve patients at a higher level and allow our business to be more healthy,” he says in the Fuel Tank. 

It starts with the data, which is an objective measure of retention. That can be an eye opener for doctors who aren’t focusing on giving patients personalized treatment plans based on their problem. You may be saying one thing, and the patient is hearing something else. 

“What you say and what they hear is what shows up in the data,” says Unruh. “Data doesn’t lie.” 

That’s a communication challenge. It requires a degree of humility to understand the person in front of you and base recommendations on their unique situation. There’s no cookie-cutter for treatment, says Dr. Sea. 

As chiropractors, “our best recommendation is, ‘How do we help the patient solve their problem? That’s it,” he says.  

“Your best recommendation has to take into consideration all those parameters and really understand what is it the patient is really trying to accomplish and how does your solution help get them to meet their objectives or their goals.” 

Watch the Fuel Tank to learn more about how to use Active Patient Retention in your practice.