The Future of Hair Restoration
The following is a transcript of Episode 8 of the Hair Restoration With Dr. Daniel A. Danyo podcast.
Dr. Danyo: Everybody has a very busy schedule. And then for an office, you can literally do everything through this format in a secure manner and one that meets your time and my time, and basically gets the entire team involved in the process. So I think it works great. And we’ve had such positive feedback from our patients. It’s obviously working for them as well.
Clark: That was the voice of Daniel A. Danyo, M.D, founder and physician at North Atlanta Hair Restoration, a boutique medical practice solely dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of male and female hair loss. You’re listening to “Hair Restoration” with Dr. Daniel A. Danyo, I’m your host, Clark, and all season long we’re speaking with Dr. Danyo about how he and his team at North Atlanta Hair Restoration are helping his patients transform their everyday lives for the better.
In this episode, Dr. Danyo reveals what he sees as the future of hair restoration and covers how recent COVID-19 mandates put in place as patient safety as Dr. Danyo’s top priority. We’ll also discuss the efficient, easy, and straightforward process of personalized one-on-one consultations that Dr. Danyo offers his patients. In fact, you can set one up right now yourself by texting (678) 218-6125. It’s really that easy to get the confidence boost you’ve always wanted. There’s so much to talk about, so let’s dive right in. Dr. Danyo, it’s great to be back here with you.
Dr. Danyo: Hey, Clark, how are you?
Clark: I’m doing well, I’m excited about our conversation we’ve got planned today, and it’s themed around individualized consultation process. And this is, I know a pretty in-depth process that you use, however, it’s streamlined to be effective and seamless and efficient. So I’m really eager to hear kind of the overview with this and included in this conversation, I think, we’re gonna be talking a little about telehealth and telemedicine and how that’s emerged a little quicker than the whole world might’ve anticipated. And we can talk a little about pricing as well, and how you do your consultations, and a few more things too, I think, so…
Dr. Danyo: Sure.
Clark: Let’s kick things off.
Dr. Danyo: Sure. Well, I’m going to start this off by saying, this podcast is maybe towards the tail end of the COVID-19 pandemic. And the world of medicine has really changed because a lot of doctors haven’t been able to see patients in their office and they’ve had to go more towards a telemedicine process to either deal with problems that patients are having or acquire new patients through consultation. So, we’ve been using a platform called Klara for about three or four years. In fact, I was one of the first doctors on their platform.
Clark: What is Klara?
Dr. Danyo: So Klara, it’s K-L-A-R-A, is a texting kind of chat platform for physicians. And it’s all HIPAA compliant, it’s encrypted. So it meets all of the security guidelines. So we communicate with our patients when they become active patients in a great way because they can text me, I get a notification, and my other staff gets a notification and it sets up this nice timeline, almost like a text conversation that people can send videos, they can send pictures of themselves. We can have video chats, we can send forms. We have a lot of YouTube videos that we send kind of preop and postop before and after procedures. And it works really well. We do a lot of our follow-ups on there. So, with this age now, telemedicine, especially as it goes towards consultations in the office, the fact of the matter is, we need to limit the number of patients in our office because of this COVID-19 issue and really the mandate that we have to keep everybody safe, myself, my staff, and definitely the patients.
Clark: That is top priority. I understand that’s always been the top of mind presence for you and your entire team.
Dr. Danyo: Yes. And really, by limiting in-office consultations in doing most of my consultations, in fact, at this point, it’s probably 95% of my consultations right now through this Klara platform. And really the feedback has been almost 100% people really enjoy it and find it extremely easy to use. So by setting up the telemedicine and more online consultations, we’re kind of creating a much safer environment for people that are actually getting hair transplant on that particular day because it’s just the patient, myself, and my two clinical staff and usually just one non-clinical person upfront, we all wear masks and everything is cleaned. But we just don’t want people in and out. Although we do have an option to schedule a visit in the office. But there is an actual fee for that, it’s $150 and it has to be scheduled at a time when I don’t have another patient in the office.
Clark: Wow. So let’s jump into that a little deeper. So, what you’re saying is you’re actually leveraging telehealth to make this even easier for someone to get that consultation, that consultation, and how much does that cost if it’s virtual?
Dr. Danyo: It’s free.
Clark: That’s awesome.
Dr. Danyo: Yeah. Yeah. And it’s done at a time that’s typically convenient for everybody. When I’m doing hair transplant or like a hair transplantation procedure, obviously, the patient wants me to have my full focus on them. So, the online consultations I often do after work, I mean, people are getting off of work, and through texting, we can say, “Hey, do you mind if I call you at 5:30?” “Sounds great.” So, through Klara, through the texting, I will generally call people for the consultation. I have to turn this from a phone conversation into a video conversation, which we can actually do through Klara and it’s all HIPAA compliant. And that way I can see real-time video of people’s scalps and really come up with a game plan of what works.
Clark: So they, on their head, they’re, I guess, holding up their phone or a device and gives you that close up look?
Dr. Danyo: Yeah. It can be either on a computer oftentimes done on a laptop or on a phone.
Clark: Now, that’s gotta be vulnerable for someone, you know, I know there’s so much that we’ve talked about before with how the outcome from a procedure, you’re going to get more confident, it’s going to change your life in a lot of ways based on the stories and the experiences that you’ve seen, but what would you say to someone who might be a little bit maybe nervous about, you know, showing someone these vulnerable, you know, a hairline or on your…Or a variety of procedures that you can do, but it’s all, of course, confidential and all that, but any encouragement that you have for someone who’s maybe considering calling you. And it’s a free consultation, but, based on the thousands of procedures you’ve done and the people that you’ve worked with, what would you want to say to someone who’s sort of thinking about, just exploring this as an option?
Dr. Danyo: Sure. You know, the consultation can be as discreet as you want it to be. I’ve even had people that didn’t want to talk on the phone they just wanted to text a couple of times, and they have more general questions. And they thanked me and said, “Let me get back to you.” And some of them do convert into patients. And then other people are just really at such a beginning phase that they’re just not ready to move forward. You know, we can go from texting to a phone call to a video conference. Because we are limiting the amount of in-office consultations right now, a lot of my new patients that come for hair transplant, I’m literally meeting them the morning of the procedure.
And it’s something during the discussion that we have, either through video or phone, that we kind of preempt a lot of issues. For one, it is tough when you’re not physically looking at somebody’s scalp to say, “Okay, you definitely 1,500 grafts is the exact number that you need.” So I generally will put in a range to just say, “Based on my experience and based on what’s going on with your hair loss, most people need about 1,500 grafts. It could be as low as 1,000. It could be as high as 2,000.”
And so when we kind of put a range in there and maybe settle in the middle point, then it gives a little bit of wiggle room because when somebody comes in for a procedure or I’m meeting them that morning, I do an in-depth evaluation. We go into the room, I take a video follicle scope and look at the donor site to make sure we have enough density to do what we’re going to do. And then really kind of take some measurements to say, “Okay, this is what needs to be done.” And then you couple that with our honest approach for counting grafts. And I just have to say that…
Clark: Yeah, let’s talk about counting grafts. What that means for this case.
Dr. Danyo: Sure. While we’re doing the procedure, I want every patient, if they come in for 1,500 grafts, I want them to feel totally confident that we counted and completed 1,500 grafts.
Clark: Does your hand…This is a hand procedure, and it’s graft by graft by graft and you’re doing this?
Dr. Danyo: Yes. Yeah. So it’s 1,500 would be, 1,500 out, but then 1,500 in. So I do both the extraction and the placement. So some donor sites are very plentiful and others are not. So there’s a variable when we don’t meet face to face to where the donor site may not be as plentiful as the number of grafts that we want to do. So it’s not uncommon that, let’s say we’re going for more like 2,000 grafts, and the donor site for that particular day can only safely give me 1,800 grafts. I’m not going to push it. And we’re honest to say, “You know what? Today we’re doing a maximum of 1,800.” But then we’ve got kind of a construct to have a really good day and not have any surprises. And I think that’s the key making this all successful.
Clark: When you talked earlier about this concept of a timeline, I think that also sort of fits into that transparency approach. And this is how we think as humans, you know, start, middle and end. We’re thinking about steps, and even if it is a little bit intimidating or a little scary to explore this, and I understand you were saying someone can simply text if they want, to just begin the conversation, but as you go, it just is one step at a time.
Dr. Danyo: Yeah. So, on our website when you go to the contact us page, we’ve got multiple options there. It can be as simple as filling out a form and asking a question to where we get back to you. You can call us directly. Typically you’ll speak with Becky, my patient coordinator. We have a chatbox as well, and basically chatbox is a 24-hour provider that is not necessarily in the office, but we work with them to answer questions and also get information so that we can contact you. And then we have a pretty cool option now where you can actually text us. And the number is (678) 218-6125. And by doing that, you will have a secure text to our office where you can text questions and really kind of start that conversation. And if you want to proceed forward with doing more of a telemedicine type process, we make that very simple.
But the key really, with Klara, is the fact that my entire team is involved. And when you’re talking about coordinating a case, you’ve got, you know, obviously, the graft count, there are so many questions to answer. And, you know, that conversation sometimes can last 30 minutes, 60 minutes, you know, I’m happy to help. So we kind of walk through that process. But the other thing is, the team has to be totally involved, because if they’re scheduling then you’re gonna have to work through dates that work for both the patient and our team. You’re going to have to work on financing options and pricing in which Becky or one of the front office team members will do. And then there’s a clinical side to where we get people prepared for the procedure. And it made that process as simple as possible. And then the last aspect of Klara is, people can text me directly and we can continue the conversation through texting where people can say, “Hey, can you give me another call or can we do another video chat?” And I’m happy to do that as well.
Clark: Excellent. And any other thoughts that you have as the world has been changing so much, and there’s been this shift to telehealth and this shift from your boutique practice and your team. I know it’s a smaller team by design, so you can have as much of a hands-on approach from start to the end of a successful hair transplantation process. Any other thoughts that you have as it relates to just keeping everything in this consultation process as streamlined as possible?
Dr. Danyo: Sure. Well, first off, I’m totally happy to meet with people in the office, and by us kind of doing the more telehealth, it’s out of necessity based on the times that we’re in right now, but there’s been actually a very good fallout because everybody has a very busy schedule. I mean for an office, you can literally do everything through this format in a secure manner, and one that meets your time and my time. And basically it gets the entire team involved in the process. So, I think it works great and we’ve had such positive feedback from our patients. It’s obviously working for them as well.
Clark: I love it. Dr. Danyo, as always, I really enjoy chatting with you and learning more about this. You always keep things easy to understand and easy to follow. So, during these times, I’m glad you’ve been able to continue to work. And, as always, safety is always number one priority, and you’ve continued to adjust in the times to make sure this is all easy. And, again, I think a good place to probably wrap up here is that, that message that you were sharing earlier, that, normally, to meet in-person for a consultation, it’s going to be a cost, a price to pay, but virtual is free. So, how does someone get that free virtual consultation and connect with you and your team?
Dr. Danyo: Well, the one is just to call the office and one of our team members will talk with you and then set up the Klara app for you. It’s very simple. And one thing with the Klara app, we do not use this for marketing. This is only a communication tool. So, some people have been leery to even do it, but this is nothing where you’re signing up for some kind of list. None of the information is shared. It’s just a simple way for you to communicate with us. The next would be the texting option. That’s (678) 218-6125, where you can text a question and get the conversation going, and then we will then communicate with you to set up an online consult or in-person consult.
There is a click to book online button on our contact us page. And that’s where you can actually schedule an in-person consult, it’ll actually get you into our schedule and you can choose your time. And we’re in the process of actually allowing you to even pay for that through our website. And again, it’s $150 charge. We do have the chatbox, but that’s more to start the conversation and get some information for our office to get back for you. And again, Klara is secure, it’s confidential, and it’s just really easy. And I think the ideal way to communicate in these times.
Clark: Wonderful. Thank you so much for taking the time to share a little about what’s going on with the team, how someone can engage with you and learn more about this, and I’m looking forward to our next conversation.
Dr. Danyo: Sounds great. Take care, Clark.
Clark: Thanks for listening to Hair Restoration with Dr. Daniel A. Danyo. You can book your free consultation today with Dr. Danyo by simply calling 678-845-7521 or online at nahairrestoration.com and be sure to subscribe, rate and review this podcast wherever you listen to your audio content.
Dr. Daniel A. Danyo is the founder and medical director of North Atlanta Hair Restoration, specializing in treating hair loss in both men and women. He is one of only 300 people in the world certified by the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery.
He is a member of the American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery, International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons, American Hair Loss Association, and The International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery.
He is also an early adopter and pioneer of Shave-less FUE, one of the most discreet surgical procedures available for hair restoration. Dr. Danyo performs every procedure himself, from start to finish. He individually extracts and places every graft on every patient. Learn more about Dr. Danyo on his Meet Dr. Danyo page.