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From the Managing Director
27 June 2016
For some, Corporate Dentistry offers some real opportunities.
In my opinion, Corporate Dentistry has the possibility to offer patients two great services:
1) the possibility of 24/7 dentistry albeit that Medical Doctors have been corporatised for some years but (with the exception of a medical emergency) there is not much demand for 24/7 healthcare and;
2) The power of social media where say 12 patients per day 5 days per week by 500 practices 30,000 patients per week can have their say.
From an Economist’s perspective, Corporate Dentistry offers the possibility to utilise all the latent capacity in a dental practice, which is great from their perspective, but it is often easier said than done. Then from the point of view of a supplier of Consumables, Equipment, Materials and Medicament, Dental Corporates offer the prospect of big volumes relative to a sole trader that can underpin the operational costs of doing business. And from a Dentist’s perspective, Corporate Dentists may offer a great career start, a better work life balance and a possible exit.
For the existing dental practice, is there anything more to be concerned about if a Dental Corporate was to open around the corner or across the road, next door or upstairs compared to another sole practitioner doing the same thing?
Assuming you are running an efficient practice delivering the best patient care you can offer, resulting with your patients returning to ensure they maintain and improve their oral health care, I would argue there is nothing wrong with a bit of competition to keep us focused on listening to our patients and providing the oral health care in an environment they want to come back to and recommend your practice to their family and friends.
In my view, another dental practice opening in our neighbourhood is not where our business focus needs to be. Given there is such an unmet demand for oral health care; only 37% of the population go to the dentist in any one year, the business opportunity is to continue to enthuse our patients and through them, their family and friends to see the value of a regular visit to their oral health professional. If we truly did double the number of visits to the Dentist, we actually don't have enough Oral Health Professionals to meet the demand even with all the graduates and overseas trained Dentists that are entering the system.
Is it easy to grow the number of people visiting the Dentist? No, it’s not but like growing a crop you need to start sowing to have any chance of having a harvest.
Thank you for your business. We look forward to helping you to provide the best possible care this month.