I have touched on the idea of a template document for explaining options to pts before but felt it was time I actually discussed this in more detail. I call this my "Complex treatment considerations" document.
When I started doing more complex cases a couple of years ago I found it difficult to explain all potential options to some patients verbally in a short time so decided to try to create a written summary of the pts problems and their broad options. This process was very time consuming at first taking up a lot of my lunchbreaks etc. So after doing it a few times I decided to see if I could speed the process up by creating a template. Over time the template has been added to and edited but I now use it very regularly and find it very useful.
I have separated the template into 3 sections:
1) Current problems which get listed in bullet points.
2) Broad options. My template has a long list of options and I just delete ones which are not appropriate and add any additional text required for that specific pt.
3) General considerations for complex treatment. This section has all the useful additional information to cover things like guarantees, any credit offered, requirement for good daily maintenance etc.
I tend to use this template for cases where there is a lot to discuss. In one appt I may take a history, examine the pt, take photos and radiographs and try to gauge the pts main desires from their teeth. Then I will book a second appt a week or two later and use the photos to explain all their problems, then use the "complex treatment considerations" sheet to guide discussions about their options. I will also highlight specific points using my demo model or maybe photos from previous similar cases.
At the end the pt leaves with a folder containing their complex treatment considerations document, any consent forms relevant to them, and quotes for the main options.
If they know how they wish to proceed that's great, otherwise all this info can be reflected on at home and I will call them a few days later to see if they have any questions and book their appts.
I find that I am now both more thorough when discussing big cases and this template has also really sped up this process.
My main template for this document can be downloaded from my google drive. Obviously you will need to carefully review all the text and customise it to your practice and how you deliver info to your pts:
Dr Chris Harper