Factors preventing a full dental schedule — Patient cancellations is No. 1

There are numerous reasons practices don't have 100 percent of their appointment schedules full, with patient cancellations topping the list, according to a recent poll from the American Dental Association's Health Policy Institute.

The ADA surveyed 1,189 general practice dentists for its February "Economic Outlook and Emerging Issues in Dentistry" poll. Of those surveyed, 1,032 dentists shared which factors were preventing their practice's appointment schedule from reaching 100 percent for the week ending Feb. 14. Respondents were able to choose more than one answer.

Below are the percentage of dentists who selected the factor as preventing their practice's schedule from reaching 100 percent capacity:

Patient cancellations: 85.4 percent
Not enough patients making appointments: 42 percent
Trouble filling vacant staff positions: 33.4 percent
COVID-19 safety protocols: 21.3 percent
Other: 6.4 percent 

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