Managing No-Shows and Cancellations During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has most patients wary, especially with the recent surge in active cases. In some cases, patients may opt to not show up for their appointment as a safety precaution. However, if patient no-shows persist, it will become detrimental to your dental office.

If you are experiencing a higher volume of no-shows, here are some tips on how to use Paradigm Clinical and its different modules to manage this situation:


Consistent communication

One reason for no-shows and cancellations could be the concerns over whether a dental office is safe to visit. Patients want to know whether a dental office is doing enough to protect them from COVID-19 transmission. 

We know that in actual fact, dental offices already have high standards for sanitization and have even more stringent protocols nowadays. The important thing is to communicate these standards and new protocols that have been adopted to ensure patient safety.

Use the Newsletter module to keep your patients updated with all the information about how you’re keeping the office safe. Include details of new equipment you’ve installed (e.g. HVAC systems), as well as safety procedures that each patient must follow (screening, hand sanitization, keeping masks on etc.).

Being transparent with your patients is the best way to give them peace of mind. In turn, you should see a reduced number of no-shows.


Regular reminders

There are times when patients simply forget they had an appointment. This is why regular reminders and confirmations are important.

With My Contact Pro and 2-Way SMS, you can easily set up automated SMS reminders and confirmations to patients. Once your patient confirms their appointment, it will automatically up their status so that you know at a glance. 

You can also set up periodic SMS reminders until the day of their appointment to ensure that it doesn’t slip their minds. Since you don’t need to call the patients, you’ll free up more time for the extra sanitization protocols. The only time you may need to contact patients personally is if they don’t respond to your confirmation text!

You can also send them screening and consent forms via SMS if you have the COVIDform installed.


Keeping track of no-shows

No-shows and cancellations will undoubtedly happen – that’s just the nature of dental appointments, even before the COVID-19 pandemic. What’s important is the followup with the patient. 

Paradigm Clinical lets you run no-show and cancellation reports so that you can assess the situation. A long list of no-show patients means that patients are falling through the cracks somewhere along the line. Followup with patients over the phone to find out if everything is okay. These calls may take time but will allow you to identify and address any concerns, as well as continue building your relationships.

For example, if a patient tells you they were apprehensive about their safety, you can explain what the office has done to ensure everyone is safe. If they tell you they forgot, you may have to adjust the schedule of the automated reminders.

These calls will show that you care for the patient and give you an opportunity to invite them back for another day.


It is important to monitor your no-show rates to find out where income is being lost, especially after the lockdown. Utilizing the different modules like the Newsletter modules, My Contact Pro, 2-Way SMS and COVIDform will help reduce the rate of no-shows. Using features like running reports will help you catch any patients that may have fallen through the cracks and address any concerns so that they return with confidence. 

Dental management is made easy with Paradigm Clinical. To learn more about our software and all the features that will help you manage no-shows, give us a call at 905-946-1477 ext. 232 or email Logic Tech at