Treat your sick schedule

January 30, 2018
Erika Ervin, MBA, CVPM, CVT

Erika Ervin, MBA, CVPM, CVT is practice manager at Toms River Animal Hospital in Toms River, New Jersey. 

Do you have open "same day sick" veterinary appointments lingering on your schedule each day? Use this tips for a healthier schedule-and give your bottom line a boost too.

shutterstock.comMany hospitals rely on areas in the appointment schedule reserved for same-day sick appointments. At a hospital I used to manage, many times these reserved appointments weren't booked. When I investigated, I learned our client service team wasn't booking appointments on these blocked out "sick pet" times.

I decided we needed a protocol change to schedule more efficiently. To make the change, I used these steps to keep the whole team on board:

• I asked doctors and team members about what these time slots meant to them and what their perceptions were.

• I researched potential revenue we'd lost by not booking these appointment slots. The numbers were significant enough to warrant a change in our procedures.

• I shared this data with my team. We started with a discussion about why this was important for the hospital, and I suggested doing a "dry run" to schedule more appointment requests on these same-day sick appointment slots to see how it would affect our day-to-day operations.

Once the team realized it was a good change, we implemented the protocol permanently. We were subsequently able to see and treat several more pets per day, schedule more clients when they could be seen and increase daily revenue.

Erika Ervin, MBA, CVPM, CVT

Practice manager

Toms River Animal Hospital

Toms River, New Jersey