Strategic Scheduling: A Competitive Advantage

CareCredit – February 2014
by Karen Zupko

There is an old Zen story about a man who watched his neighbor zipping down the road on a fast running horse. “Where are you going?” he shouted to the neighbor as he whizzed by. “I don’t know,” the neighbor responded. “Ask the horse!” In many plastic surgery offices, the schedule is like this horse: out of control.

RECOGNIZE THE SYMPTOMS: Some examples: Clinic consistently runs behind. No-shows are rampant. Surgeons arrive late and allow interruptions during consultations. The EHR bogs down the clinical staff. Fee quote discussions are rushed. Staff are stressed, surgeons are frustrated, and patients are irritable, especially if you don’t offer them free wireless in the reception room! If putting up with these things day after day seems easier than addressing the problem, your practice is likely missing out on legitimate revenue opportunities. Not to mention eroding the all-important patient experience. Without a map, any road (or horse) will take you somewhere.

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