Take heart in 2003

We're about to pack away another year, and I sincerely hope that this year was successful for each of you.

By Joe Blaes

We're about to pack away another year, and I sincerely hope that this year was successful for each of you. However, since success is such a personal thing, I also hope that you have defined your criteria for success. Perhaps that would be a good exercise for the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. Sit down with pen and paper and write out what success means to you. Then, look back on 2002 to see how close you came and decide what changes you can make next year to ensure even more success.

To help you on this quest for success, go to page 28 and read our "2002 Practice, Salary, and Fee Survey" by Contributing Editor Rick Willeford. This information will be valuable to the management of your practice. Readers will want to save this issue of Dental Economics as a reference guide for the rest of the year.

Tucked away in the "Letters to the Editor" section is information on the tax reform act that describes some of the tremendous tax advantages to purchasing new equipment or making improvements around the office. Contributing Editor Dr. Jeff Dalin tells readers how to take advantage of these new laws.

Dr. Marvin Mansky, a good friend from New York and a fellow member of the American Academy of Dental Practice Administration, is recovering from heart surgery. He passes along some invaluable information on heart attacks "from someone who knows," which is: Why wait for a crisis? If you have a family history of heart disease or high cholesterol, get a high-speed heart scan or a Thallium treadmill test now! You can plan for treatment (if needed) before a heart attack occurs. This is definitely preferable. (Good advice, Marvin!) I have had these tests performed, and I am receiving treatment to clean out a small amount of plaque that was found. What about the rest of you? We all think we're superman, but none of us are. Take the time, now. You owe it to yourself and, especially, to those you love and who love you!

Speaking of loved ones — don't forget who is number one in your life! Take time to enjoy the season! Sue and I just returned from taking two of our grandchildren, Nicholas and Zachary, to see The Santa Clause 2. They enjoyed it and so did we. When we returned home, I was feeling the Christmas spirit, so I got the tree out and began setting it up.

I have just finished reading two independent surveys that were completed by companies outside the PennWell family. Your responses to these surveys once again confirms that Dental Economics is the magazine you turn to for information on the business side of your practice. You rated us as the number two magazine for information on new products, and you also indicated that Dental Economics was the magazine you kept until you finished reading all of the articles.

I am both proud and humble. I am proud that you enjoy reading Dental Economics and that you use the information we send you every month. I am humble because I am really a dentist at heart, and it amazes me that I have been so successful in selecting the articles and authors that appeal to you.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you, the reader, for taking the time to pick Dental Economics out of that huge stack of mail that you get every month and then taking the time to read what I have selected out of the many articles that I read every month. Please accept my heartfelt thanks for making Dental Economics the best-read magazine in the dental industry.

Next month, you will see some of the changes that will help us continue bringing you the best information for managing the business side of your practice.

Happy holidays, and may God bless you with health and happiness in the New Year!

Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor — e-mail: joeb@pennwell.com

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