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New Patients- Same Day Cleaning?

I am running across a dilemma with new patients. Originally they were scheduled on the doctor’s side for exam and x-rays for 30 minutes and then on my side for 1 hour. A lot of patients were requiring SRPs and by the time the probing was done, their periodontal health explained to them, and the treatment plan presented, it hardly leaves any time to do a cleaning. What is the most time efficient way to approach this? Many times I would just need to schedule the patient to come back in for their SRPs but many new patients are expecting a cleaning on their first visit and then just want to settle for a “regular cleaning.”



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I am given an hour to take an FMX, do all charting, have an exam, and am expected to clean if they are just a prophy. If FMD or SC/RP are recommended, we are not expected to clean. If patient states they do not want SC/RP, we tell them that we cannot clean their teeth at our office because it would be negligence. DDS is very involved in the conversation. If they want to go to a different office for a ‘regular cleaning’ we will make the xrays we took available to the other office.

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In my office they see the Dr for an hour before they see me (even if its not same day cleaning appt). This seemed to help with having enough time to possibly provide 1 quad SRP tx. You might offer this up to your Dr as a possibility to help you with enough time to provide same day tx. As with pt’s wanting a “regular cleaning” I would present all information to them and explained the importance of SRP tx. If they still want a regular cleaning I would let them know that due to their periodontal condtion it is not in their best interest to not do SRP tx. If they still deny tx I would bring the Dr in on the conversation. I have in the past spent the pt’s “cleaning” appt explaining perio and SRP etc. and then had no time for cleaning. If this appt was spent educating the pt and they accepted tx then it was time well spent. Plus some pt’s want to make sure they know what they are being tx for instead of rushing into tx.

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New patients are seen by our Dr, if he feels they need SRP he calls me in to perio chart. I explain in detail what we are going to do. I work in a T-19 office, so we have to pre-authorize SRP with insurance company so that kind of helps when they ask for the SRP the same day. I have had people deny the SRP and same as MNTEXRDH we let them know that we cannot treat them and they have to find another office.

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