One of the big problems a lot of dental practices have is that sometimes their patients’ laboratory work is not back on time for the patients’ dedicated appointment.

And doesn’t that make your practice look bad, you look bad, your staff look bad, and your laboratory look bad…

When this happens your patients believe that your office and you can’t even get the simple things right.

Your patients start to believe that if something as simple as this can go wrong, then what else is likely to go wrong for them as well?

The reason this goes wrong is…

The reason that something as simple as this goes wrong is that as a dental practice, we don’t allow for contingencies outside of our own control that can go wrong and make our office look as though we have no real idea as to what we are doing….

Recently I attended a course where the dentist lecturing [as opposed to “presenting”] was telling the audience how she had had a very high calibre patient who had taken a day off work so as to attend for his dental treatment, and that this patient’s crown had not arrived back from the dental laboratory. [the patient was having a lot of dental work done this day under sedation]

And at the hourly rate that this patient charged his services out at, rebooking that patient to another day was certainly going to be a very expensive episode for the dental practice to explain itself out of….

And the silly thing is that this scenario never needed to be this way at all if the dental practice had simply thought two steps ahead, and made the “two step ahead” process part of their protocol.

Here was our thought… this is what we did at Active Dental…

If it took our laboratory two weeks of turnaround to have a completed crown back into our practice for issue to the patient… we would just simply go ahead and schedule each patient three weeks ahead for their crown issue appointment?

If we did this, then we knew that:

  1. All crowns would be back at our practice seven days prior to the appointment they were needed for…
  2. Those patients whose crowns had arrived back could be asked to bring their appointments forward if needed should a vacancy arise.

And what this meant for us and our practice was that if we framed this phenomenon up well, then every patient waiting on a crown issue appointment would be “technically” available to bring their crown issue appointment forward, if they were asked to or requested to by our office.

For this scheduling procedure to work perfectly, the temporary crowns that we fabricated needed to be comfortable for the patients, and to be cemented so that the patient would not dislodge the crown with regular eating, brushing and flossing.

[If your temporary crowns are uncomfortable and they keep coming off or breaking, you need to improve your clinical skills so that this never happens….]

Because our temporary crowns were well fabricated and were well retained, and would “go the distance”, this allowed the team at Active Dental to schedule our crown issues out a little way with confidence.

There really is no need for a dental practice to be sweating on the postman to deliver lab work on time…if your dentistry is good, and you know what you’re doing.

Let me know how this plan works for your practice….


Dr. David Moffet BDS FPFA CSP is a certified CX Experience coach. David works with his wife Jayne Bandy to help SME businesses improve their Customer Service Systems to create memorable World Class experiences for their valued clients and customers. Click here to find out how David and Jayne can help your business