There are a few questions we often hear:
When should I expand my hygiene team?
Is my current hygiene team working to capacity, or is there still room to fill?
This is one decision that should NOT be made based on emotion. It's important to look at the numbers behind your practice to see if you're really full or not.
Determining Hygiene Capacity
The first thing you want to do is determine your practice's Hygiene Capacity.
Hygiene Capacity is the maximum number of hygiene patients you can see, per month, in your practice.
To calculate that number, use the formula below:
(# of Hygiene Chairs) x (# of Hygiene Days/Week) x (Hours worked per day) x (60 min/Average minutes per hygiene visit) x (4.3 weeks per month) = Hygiene Capacity
For example, a practice that has 4 hygiene chairs, with 5 hygiene days per week, working 8 hours per day, with the average hygiene visit taking 45 minutes, would look like this:
(4 hygiene chairs) x (5 hygiene days/week) x (8 hours/day) x (60 min /45 min --> 1.333) x (4.3 weeks per month) = 917 patients/month
This means that this practice can have a maximum number of 917 hygiene visits per month.
When is it time to expand?
When your hygiene visits consistently reach 90% of your hygiene capacity, it is time to look into expanding your hygiene department.
In our example above, 90% of their hygiene capacity is 825 visits. That means that if they consistently have more than 825 hygiene visits per month, it is time to start expanding their team.
Tracking Hygiene Visits on Dental Intelligence
To find out how many hygiene visits you have in your practice, first go to the Performance Board, then look at the Appointments metric. Click on the menu and select Year Over Year.
Next, you can filter the appointments to only show Hygiene. Now you can see the trend in the number of hygiene appointments your practice has per month. To see the specific number of hygiene appointments your practice has for a particular month, just hover over the month you want to look at.
You can now measure your hygiene appointments and see if you are within 90% of your hygiene capacity. If you're not yet there, focus on increasing the number of hygiene appointments in your practice with the hygiene team you already have, before looking into expansion.
As you work to fill up your hygiene chairs, try using the Unscheduled Patients metric.