There are many challenges running a successful dental practice and making sure patients turn up for their appointment and arrive for their appointment on time is a big one.

When patients don’t turn up for their appointment or arrive late for an appointment, it affects your appointment schedule and all of your other patients and their appointments.

This is not good! This is a good way to lose patients who are turning up and on time.

So why does this continue to happen in many dental practices?

Is your patient at fault?

Or is there something you should be doing that you are not doing to help patients stay on track for their appointments?

Like any problem that is happening in your practice, it is important to find the cause of the problem and a solution rather than just blaming your patients.

Blame does not solve the problem of patients being late and not turning up for appointments.

I see many practices not measuring and keeping track of their patient’s appointments and those that fail to attend appointments or run late for appointments.

This problem then gets out of control and has a big impact on the production of the practice and the patient’s overall satisfaction with you and your practice.

So how do you ensure patients attend their appointments and are on time?

Start by looking closely at the type pf patients you are attracting to your practice. You want patients who are serious about their dental treatment and care. This comes down to your marketing and the referral system you have in place.

The people you attract to your business are the people you are now trying to convert and keep as long term patients.

I had a close look at the patients at our practice, who were not turning up to their appointments.

I looked at who they were:

  • New Patients coming to their very first appointment
  • New Patients who had cancelled before
  • Existing patients who had previously cancelled appointments
  • Existing long term patients who had a valid reason for not showing

I then tracked and measured these groups of patients and looked at the patients who turned up late for their appointments as well as those patients who did not turn up for their appointment.

I then analysed how the appointments were set up for these patients.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Was the patient committed to the treatment and care that was going to happen at the appointment? There are a number of questions you need to ask to check if the patient is ready, willing and able to keep the appointment.
  • Was the patient clear about the treatment and care?
  • Did the patient have a level of urgency and concern?
  • Was the patient committed to the appointment time and day?
  • Was the patient ready to get started?

If the patient has not made a true commitment to the treatment and care and the appointment time and day then they are not ready.

Something else to mention that is very important.

Be careful you don’t start to accept that turning up late or not turning up at all is acceptable. When you make things easy for your patients, then your patients will continue the behaviour of being late or not showing and think it is all okay.

I always say to teams that the number one reason why a New Patient is late for their appointment is because you have helped then be late.

Now ask yourself these questions:

  • Did you go over the location and parking at the practice?
  • Did you ask how they will be travelling to your practice so you can assist them with public transport?
  • Did you mention to the New Patient, the importance of arriving early for their appointment and give them a specific number of minutes for their early arrival?
  • Did you give them a reason they need to arrive early for their appointment? (To go over some important things before their appointment.)

When you set up an appointment, especially for a New Patient, you need to be very exact and specific about the patient’s first arrival at your practice. Be clear with your directions on how to find your practice and include landmarks to make it easy.

When you get onto patients who fail to attend appointments and are late for appointments you will see a big change in your appointment book.

This is so much better than hoping your patients arrive for their appointment and arrive on time.



I have the honour of speaking at ACAS2020 in Sydney February 21-22.

Find out how your team can convert more Phone Enquiries into kept Appointments.

If your team don’t know what to say on the phone and are not ready to book in appointments for Clear Aligners, then you will be missing out on a lot of patients.

I will be giving you tips and ideas on how to convert calls to kept appointments.

Get your tickets now. Don’t miss out!


Call Tracking Excellence

With Call Tracking Excellence your team will learn the SAME exact processes Jayne used to:
1. Dramatically improve new patient call-in conversions to booked appointments..

2. Retain existing patient appointments and…

3. Prevent ongoing losses from appointment cancellations.

For those of you, who are ready to get started call me on 1300 378 044 or email


Thank you to all the fabulous dental teams who have attended my Master Classes over the last four years.

2020 will be the start of a brand new, NEVER done before 2 Day Event. As soon as I have all the information you will be the first to know!


Dental Phone Excellence is a simple to implement complete Phone Answering System I developed that helped me to build an extraordinary dental practice in the heart of working class Western Sydney.

If you’d like to know more, download my sixteen page FREE special report “How I Quickly and Easily Went From 35% to 77% New Patient Telephone Conversions, and Doubled The Size of my Dental Practice Along the Way” and discover some of the many costly mistakes being made on your phone…..


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