For years the leadership team and I have mulled over this topic at Scarborough Physio and Health.
When people miss appointments we understand that there are many reasons for this, the majority of which you can’t avoid, and some of which are major issues in you and your family’s lives.
In saying that, sometimes people just pain old forget their appointments with us.
These particular themes have helped us to frame our new cancellation policy, which is as follows:
Appointments and appointment cancellations at Scarborough Physio and Health
At Scarborough Physio and Health we value the friendship we have with our clients, and part of our culture is to seek first to understand you before needing to be understood.
We know that you may need to cancel or postpone an appointment for many reasons, and this is OK.
Where possible we request that you give us the maximum amount of notice possible when you need to cancel your appointment. We have lots of people who we can’t fit in for an appointment who go onto a waiting list, and when you call us to cancel with plenty of notice this gives us a chance to call one of these people in pain and fit them in to see one of our therapists, and I assure you that they appreciate the fact you called us with plenty of notice.
So if you need to call and cancel an appointment we will waive any late notice cancellation fee – but if you get into a habit of doing this regularly, we may need to reinstate the charge.
In return for us understanding you, we would like you to understand our perspective.
As a practitioner there is nothing worse than, say, expecting someone at a 2pm appointment. 2pm arrives, the minutes tick away, and our patient doesn’t show up. They just forgot the appointment, as simple as that.
This affects some practitioner in our clinic more than others – for instance, our massage therapists do one hour appointments so if you forget to attend a one hour appointment your therapist is literally sitting around twiddling their thumbs for the next 55 minutes after they realise you are not coming, needless to say that the other people on our waiting lists could have been seen during this time. And at times we can up to 5 or 6 people on a waiting list on any day, in pain, who need our help.
When you forget an appointment, it makes us feel like you don’t value our time and the service we are providing you.
In this situation we have instituted a $50 charge, for which we will call you and recoup this charge over the phone as soon as possible after the forgotten appointment.
I believe this policy is fair on both counts.
We want to be understanding when you need to cancel an appointment, and on the flip side we want you to also respect our time by making sure you get on the phone and call us if you can’t attend an appointment.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact me directly – [email protected] .
Nick Schuster and the team at Scarborough Physio and Health