As dental offices begin reopening in many states during the coronavirus pandemic, they are returning to a changed world. Prior to the outbreak, it was estimated that nearly 75% of adults in the United States experienced some amount of fear or anxiety with regards to visiting a dentist. It can only be expected that this percentage has since increased. Today, people are not only nervous about having a painful, traumatic experience, but they also worry about getting sick.

To operate in a safer manner and provide better patient care, more dental offices are partnering with call answering services. A dentist answering service allows you to care for your patients 24/7 and be there when they need you, while also limiting the amount of physical interaction between staff members and patients.

Here, we will explain three ways that a dentist answering service improves patient care:

Less staff in the office means better social distancing

Limiting face-to-face contact with others is the best way to reduce the spread of COVID-19. As a result, many medical offices have updated their practices in an effort to keep their staff and patients safe.

If your dental practice employs multiple receptionists to manage the phones and schedule appointments, it may be safer and cheaper to outsource to an answering service. Virtual receptionists work remotely, and you will never have to worry about them getting sick or needing to take time off without notice. And with less people in the office, you will not have to worry as much about your patients or other essential staff members getting sick.

A dentist answering service puts patients more at ease

For many, going to the dentist is an anxiety-producing experience that begins with a phone call to schedule an appointment. Asking these patients to wait on hold for a long time, or to leave a message will only add to their uneasiness. However, if their call is answered by a friendly, reassuring person who listens to them and helps them seamlessly book their appointment, they are likely to feel calmer about the situation. This will lead to a better overall experience with your dental practice.

An answering service allows dentists to help emergency callers faster

When a patient wakes up with an agonizing toothache or has an accident that results in a dental injury, they will want to get in touch with you quickly. In times like this, simply speaking might be very painful for them. With that said, it is important that they are not transferred around to multiple people and asked to repeat themselves. They also will not want to be asked to leave a voicemail and then wait for a callback.

The live agents of a dental answering service will ask the right questions to determine who is in the middle of a crisis, and they will make sure that these callers receive immediate assistance. By handling little tasks like appointment scheduling and follow up emails, this will also free up your staff’s time to assist patients with emergencies.