Are you missing a trick?
One key component to running a successful podiatry practice, is recalling your patients’ who have been prescribed a custom foot orthotic (CFO). Completing a package of MSK treatment and the patient feedback is all singing and dancing i.e. pain free, restored function and happy with the CFO. Previously for me, that would have been the end game – contact me if necessary. On reflection, this is poor and insufficient practice. As a podiatrist I had saw myself as a “fixer” and it is common practice, one which I adopted from the NHS. Respectfully, you do not see opticians, dentists, or orthotists do this! There really is true value in the recalling process for both the patient and the podiatry practice.
It's common practice that a patient would be wearing a CFO for 3,4,5,6,7,8 years without it being checked / re-assessed. We all know the outcome / potential of this. Educating them on the need to review the CFO just like braces / dentures at the dentist or glasses with the optician or customised footwear with an orthotist. Podiatrists need to check the CFO approximately every 12 months (more or less this is case dependent and condition of the CFO).
I have been recalling patients for approximately three years now and from my experience patients want and expect to be recalled. Overall, it is a positive experience, for us and the patients. There are many benefits to recalling your CFO patients:
The benefits for the patients:
- Exceeding patient expectations
- Ensuring the CFO is fit for purpose
- Checking if the CFO remains suitable
- Maintaining biomechanical outcome of CFO – continuing to reach its full potential
- Receiving timely effective and efficient care
The benefits for the podiatrist:
- A lasting professional relationship with your patients
- Helps to build your brand, reputation & patient / professional recommendations
- Increase in revenue
- Personal gratification, satisfaction and happiness as we are adding value to patients’ lives and enabling them to reach their full potential, with emphasis on prevention
- Aids diary management with increase in number of appointments booked.
Recalling clients is one of the cornerstones I have learnt and embedded in our clinic; thanks to The Hive for sharing their experience and educating me! If you are interested in recalling your clients, map out the process of how this will work in your clinic, delegate and more importantly systemise the process so it happens automatically, month on month. We rebook our clients 12 months in advance and send emails out at six months asking how things are going. We send out letters asking them to rebook for an orthotic review appointment and if there is no appointment made our practice manager gives them a follow up call.
The benefits that LBG offers can also help to improve the level of customer service provided in your clinic and add further value to your clients, such as:
- Provided me with an instant list of all the clients whom I had prescribed a CFO to
- Offer an insurance policy, which many of our paediatrics, sports and high-risk patients take out and they really value this. I love the superiority of it and choice for patients.
- Evaluation team on hand to give advice on prescriptions. In the past I have found this to be very helpful and efficient - thank you evaluation team!
- An MSK Podiatrist on hand to give advice on prescriptions and to discuss your clinical queries. This is instrumental if you are developing your MSK skills, working alone or you have a challenging clinical case.
- Wide range of materials available for manufactured orthoses and footwear.
- Direct Milled or Vacuum Formed processes available, I find the range of orthotics available is second to none and you are spoilt for choice.
- Free 1stadjustment (if required) – patients love that they have only been charged once and everything is included in initial fees.
- LBG are committed to the development of podiatrists / profession and strive to keep abreast of the changes and evidence-based practice. For example, education provided via blogs, conferences, courses, seminars etc.
- The team at LBG are friendly, professional and know their stuff! Feel free to arrange a visit to the lab.
I look forward to hearing your success at recalling your MSK patients and the incidence of patients wearing CFO for years unchecked stopped as this can be detrimental.
Until next time….