Foolproof Steps to Increase Patient Case Acceptance

Five principles to follow to encourage patients to accept proposed treatment.

Updated 6/30/20

Many dental team members are concerned about maintaining an adequate new patient flow and moving that tenuous, initial inquiry to a committed patient of record. Implementing these principles is the way to keep your dental practice on a positive path.

Principle 1: Today’s new patients are cynical about their own ability to rise above all the competing noise while making the right purchase decisions. From the website through the first phone call, it is the responsibility of the team to give the potential new patient a “reason to believe.” Put them at ease by letting them know they made the right choice!

Principle 2: In order to create loyal, committed, “raving fan” patients who say yes to treatment and insist their friends and family do business with you, they need to have a significant relationship with the doctor and the team. They need to like you, understand and value why they need any recommended treatment, and trust that the team will support their journey to ideal oral health!

Principle 3: The two key influencing skills needed to build strong patient relationships are asking open-ended questions (what, why, and how questions) and benefit + procedure statements (“In order to make your appointment as comfortable as possible, may I ask you a few questions?”).

Principle 4: When patients really like you, they don’t want to say “no” to your treatment recommendations. Be very wary of the MAYBE–the neutral, no-conflict zone. Try the verbal skill, “What I hear you saying is we are at ’no’ for now.”

Principle 5: Start implementing new-patient-like experiences, called “status evaluations,” with your patients of record. This will increase comprehensive treatment acceptance and generate new patient referrals and testimonials!

Learn More

Dentrix offers a free eBook with more helpful tips on improving case acceptance. Download it at

Read 7 Keys to Case Acceptance and Increasing Treatment Acceptance and Getting Paid for other ideas to encourage case acceptance.

By Amy Morgan, CEO of Pride Institute

Amy Morgan is CEO of Pride Institute, a nationally acclaimed results-oriented Practice Management consulting company. Amy and her team of highly qualified consultants have revitalized thousands of dental practices using Pride’s time-proven Management Systems, resulting in dentists becoming more secure, efficient and profitable. Pride Institute, founded in 1974, is dedicated to substantially improving doctor’s professional, financial and personal lives. Specifically, Pride has taught over 20,000 dental offices how to excel in effective Leadership, Staff Management, Treatment Presentation, Scheduling, Patient Financing, Cash Flow/Goal Setting, Social and Traditional Marketing and Transition Strategies.

Published as part of a collection of key takeaways from the 2015 Business of Dentistry Conference, along with:

Originally published in Dentrix Magazine, Winter 2015