In today’s competitive dental market, your “waiting room” needs to work harder than its name suggests. It’s the first phase of a patient care experience that keeps their comfort as a top priority.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to craft a comfort-focused environment for happier, more satisfied patients from the start.
Personal space is something patients appreciate, especially if they are nervous or are preparing for a procedure. Giving them a little room to move around or a quiet place to sit while waiting can help calm their nerves.
Place waiting room chairs strategically both in singles and small groups to afford patients privacy. Giving them a choice of sitting near friends/family or by themselves gives them a feeling of control over their experience and can make them more comfortable while completing their medical history forms.
When choosing the furniture for your dental practice waiting room, remember the right chairs will make all the difference. Be sure to offer comfortable seating for patients of all sizes and builds. Chairs with sturdy arms are especially helpful to elderly patients with difficulty sitting or rising. Small children are naturally drawn to kid-sized furniture, making them feel welcomed as well.
Sound is often an overlooked part of office aesthetic. Take time to listen to your office from a visitor’s perspective. If your waiting room includes a TV, lower the volume and choose programming that is interesting yet uplifting, such as travel or nature. Front desk chatter can be a HIPAA concern, so consider privacy barriers, noise canceling technology, or even just a soothing fountain in the waiting area to mask the noise.
Spark Their Interest
When it comes to patient satisfaction, perceived wait time matters more than actual wait time. Offering a few current newspaper or magazine subscriptions that are noncontroversial in nature will help pass the time. Better yet, coffee table books with timeless interest are more durable and attractive than a stack of magazines.
Patients who prefer to pass the time on their smartphones would appreciate a charging station and guest WiFi while catching up on their email or favorite social media.
Offer Digital Forms
Filling out forms is a huge frustration for patients, especially when required to repeat the same information over multiple visits. With the DentalForms app for iPad, your patients will find it quick and easy to review and update their previous answers. This saved time can add up to a shortened overall wait, helping to make your “waiting room” less about waiting and more about comfort.
Want to learn more? Click here to discover how DentalForms can help deliver happier, more satisfied patients.