I attended the annual meeting of the American Academy of Dental Practice Administration as a member and as the editor of Dental Economics. It was a great meeting with a group of outstanding speakers. One of that group was Dewitt Jones, an award-winning National Geographic photographer. He spoke on "Vision and Putting your Creativity to Work." If you ever have an opportunity to hear Dewitt, don`t miss it. He provides a conceptual framework for personal creativity and vision, as well as the tools to turn that vision into action in every part of your life. Dr. Tom McDougal is putting together a wonderful program for the next AADPA in Tampa in March of 1998.
There are some wonderful features for you this month. The annual Fee Survey has been streamlined, and Penny Anderson has done a terrific job of bringing all the statistics together and making them understandable. I know that this Fee Survey is valuable information that you will want to save. If you have decided to raise your fees and are afraid of what your patients will say, be sure to read Cathy Jameson`s article on fee objections. She has some great scripts for you and your office staff to use. The very best way that I have found to practice this material is to role-play during a staff meeting. I hope you are taking the time to have these very valuable training sessions on a regular basis. I have written a short article about the changes that happen when we increase or decrease fees.
Dr. John Wilde has an article that ties in well with the fee survey articles - "Achieving the Freedom of a $3,500 Per Day Net." Sure sounds good to me! He has some extremely sound practice-management principles that you should take a long hard look at. The exciting thing is that he has done it, so it certainly is possible to model it and replicate the results. John is a great resource on the financial part of the practice and he is always willing to share his experience. He also has written a great book.
In a very different area, Art Fries writes about what happens when you become disabled. His writing style is a series of questions that he hopes you have the answers to. A very interesting article. Dr. Myer Leonard writes an article on an anesthesia system that I have been using for years. He describes how the system will actually allow you to save time on one of the big time-wasters in the practice - waiting for our patients to get numb.
I hope you enjoy the regular monthly columns this month. They contain a wealth of information for you each and every month. In the future, I will be adding additional features and columns. Next month, Sally McKenzie will begin her monthly column on "Case Notes." She will be featuring an actual office where she has consulted. In the column, she will discuss the office as it was, the changes that were made, and the results that were achieved. I am excited about Sally joining the DE family on a regular basis.
Keep the cards, letters, and e-mail coming.
Your feedback is very important.
Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor