July EffectJul 06, 2023
The July Effect
By. Dr Michael Perusich
As many as 55% of Americans vacation at least one week in July and August. And this year is no exception. In fact, US travel is up about 5.5% this year alone.
So what does that mean for your Chiropractic clinic?
If we apply simple statistics, your practice could potentially see a 55% drop during those two months. For example, if your typical collections are $25,000, you could drop to $11,250! AND that could really hurt.
Plus, if you’re not paying attention and staying focused on managing your schedule, you could also suffer some longer-term practice damage if your drop-outs, fade-outs, and sneak-outs increase, which often occurs when patients go on vacation. If we let them, patients often choose to schedule when they return from their trip.
You probably are fully aware of drop-outs and hopefully tracking those each week. If not, they could be hurting your practice. There are a couple of unique drop-out types that are especially difficult to manage. Understanding how to recognize and manage them can be very important to the long-term profitability of your Chiropractic practice.
Fade-outs are patients who slowly reduce their visit frequency until they eventually stop scheduling. They can be difficult to notice and it’s often months before they are detected. The longer they go undetected, the harder they are to reschedule or reactivate.
Sneak-outs are patients who walk out the front door without a future appointment on the schedule. These can also be difficult to detect unless you have really strong drop-out procedures.
Here’s the good news. There are procedures and systems that you can utilize to combat the July Effect.
Managing the schedule correctly is very important. There should always be at least one more scheduled visit. At a minimum, this keeps the patient name in front of you in the future. Proper scheduling dramatically helps to reduce all types of drop-outs.
Patient communication is also important. From value-promoting your care recommendations to helping patients understand the benefits of regular treatment, also help to reduce the July Effect.
You should also have procedures in place to very quickly identify all patient drop-out types. The faster you notice them, the easier it is to reschedule the patient.
And if the July Effect does hit your practice, have backup plans to catch up on notes, manage your reactivation procedures, do some social media videos, and consider compressing your schedule so you and your staff can enjoy some time off.
July and August pose a potential threat to your practice as vacations often increase the number of sneak-outs and fade-outs. Having sound tactics in place will help to prevent those issues and can result in greater profitability during those often hard-hit months of summer.
Dr. Michael Perusich is a solutions-focused advisor with more than 25 years of success across the healthcare and consulting industries. His broad areas of expertise include coaching, training, content development, and motivational speaking. Dr. Perusich is the CEO for Kats Consultants, LLC. where he and his team offer a unique platform of business knowledge and tools for today's Chiropractic entrepreneur.