As dental offices around the United States reopen, patients are all trying to book appointments at once. In addition to booking appointments, patients are also calling to ask general questions regarding everything from updated office hours to sanitizing procedures. Hiring more in-house receptionists to manage these calls can be costly and risky, so many dentists are instead opting to partner with answering services.

Why should I partner with a dental answering service?

The COVID-19 pandemic has created new reasons for dentists to outsource to answering services, and the demand has significantly increased during 2020. Below we will explain four of the reasons why so many dental practices are rushing to partner with live receptionist answering services:

Everyone is trying to book appointments all at once.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, many dental offices canceled all nonemergent services as a precaution. Now they are reopening, and patients are trying to get in all at once. If your practice is experiencing a surge in phone calls, consider partnering with a dental answering service. An answering service is typically cheaper than hiring another receptionist, and you will not have to worry about a virtual receptionist getting sick. Additionally, a dental answering service can provide after-hours coverage if your office receives lots of calls on nights and weekends.

More patients are calling with general questions.

With some patients opting to stay home rather than put themselves at risk for a routine checkup, your office may experience more calls from people with questions regarding preventative oral care. Patients who are interested in coming in may call to ask about your updated office hours, and social distancing and sanitizing procedures.

If these calls are distracting you and your staff and decreasing productivity, a dentist answering service has you covered! Your virtual receptionist can answer these frequently asked questions, forwarding only the necessary calls to you. Additionally, your virtual receptionist can help with scheduling appointments.

Fewer receptionists, less risk

These days, it’s wise to only have essential employees inside your office. The more people there are working near one another, the greater the risk of spreading the coronavirus. Outsourcing to a live receptionist answering service reduces the cost and risks associated with hiring another in-house employee. Not only will you never have to worry about your remote virtual receptionist getting sick, but you also do not have to worry about them spreading germs to your staff and patients. 

Dental emergencies happen

Unfortunately, dental emergencies will arise even when practices are closed or operating part-time. Having a dental answering service manage your phones even when the office is closed ensures that patients will have a live agent to greet and reassure them in their time of need. The virtual receptionist will ask the right questions to determine exactly what has happened to the caller. From there they can alert the dentist or schedule an appointment for the patient.

Having a live receptionist answering service in place is helpful not only when there is an emergency. It also prevents dentists from being distracted by calls that are not true emergencies.