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Remind patients to use remaining insurance benefits

Oct. 1, 2011
Where has 2011 gone? Here it is October, and only two months are left until we enter 2012. Have you sent letters to your insurance patients ...

Where has 2011 gone? Here it is October, and only two months are left until we enter 2012. Have you sent letters to your insurance patients, reminding them that now is the time to come in for treatment and maximize their remaining insurance benefits? We sent our letters out in early September, since this has been a very successful marketing event that we use every year. Patients really like the reminder, and it helps us put some production on the books before the end of the year.

The Financial Black Book is a supplement to this issue of DE. The FBB is packed with great financial information for your practice, including the annual practice survey by the Levin Group, the annual fee survey compiled by Sikka Software Inc., a special overhead control article by Dr. Bill Blatchford, and an article on remodeling your office by Dr. Jeff and Pat Carter. Through a special arrangement with Sikka Software Corporation, you can download fees for your zip code by accessing a special website.

My good friend Dr. Sam Cigno has tripled the number of new patients in his practice to almost 100 a month. I asked Sam how he did it and his answer did not surprise me — he used the Scheduling Institute. I had dinner with Jay Geier, owner of the Scheduling Institute, about three years ago. I found him to be one of the most interesting people that I have ever met. His ideas for marketing a dental practice are some of the best that I have heard. Some of his ideas had never occurred to me. Sam’s practice is in an area that is solid blue-collar workers, and Jay’s marketing plans have worked very well, even in these tough economic times. I have increased my new patient numbers, too.

I would like to tell you a little about how the Scheduling Institute started since we are all looking for new patients. Jay Geier became the marketing director of a large private practice in Atlanta, Ga., where his sole responsibility and livelihood was based on generating new patients. This experience was really where the Scheduling Institute began. He employed every imaginable marketing tactic for getting new patients. These techniques generated hundreds of calls, but the hard-earned calls weren’t translating into new patients.

On a mission, he studied every part of the patient intake process and discovered two huge problems. In less than 90 days, he fixed both problems and spent the next four years growing the practice and setting new patient records. His personal best was 601 new patients in one week. Eventually, he decided to use what he had discovered to help other doctors grow their practices. That’s how Jay founded the Scheduling Institute.

For more than 13 years, the Scheduling Institute has been teaching doctors and their staffs worldwide this unique process for new patient generation and practice expansion that is truly amazing. It leads to extraordinary growth, higher income, and exceptional quality of life. Do yourself a favor and investigate the Scheduling Institute. I am sure you will like what you find and your results will be truly amazing. Your dental life will never be the same!

You will not believe my dedication — I spoke to a group of dentists and their teams in North Dakota in August on my birthday! I flew from St. Louis to Dallas to Denver to Dickinson, N.D., and then drove 40 miles to my destination — Medora, N.D. — which is close to the Montana border. This is the Badlands area of North Dakota, and it is rugged, beautiful, and full of history. Oil was discovered in the area and the economy is booming as a result. My hosts were delightful and the audience was really great! I would love to return to Medora.

Iattended the Kerr Roundtable in late August. This is an annual key opinion leader event that is a great time to meet and reconnect with old friends and make new ones. I like the Kerr event because they tend to show us products that are in research, and then ask our opinions about how the products would impact dentistry. I cannot tell you about any products that I saw because I was sworn to secrecy, but I can tell you that there are some amazing products coming from Kerr!

Patterson Companies Inc. announced that its upgraded Patterson Technology Center (PTC) began serving customers from its new location in Effingham, Ill., on Monday, Sept. 26, 2011. A grand opening event is scheduled for late October. The spacious state-of-the-art environment strengthens the PTC’s comprehensive software development, digital technology, and call center support capabilities in the markets served by Patterson Dental, Webster Veterinary, and Patterson Medical — the businesses that comprise the Patterson Companies.

“Our upgraded Patterson Technology Center provides opportunity for growth in so many exciting ways, including expanded product and service offerings to better serve our customers,” Patterson Companies Vice President of Technology Services Pam Hemmen said. “Every facet of this upgraded facility was designed with our customers in mind.”

In addition to more high-tech capabilities to develop, test, and support technologies of the future, the facility showcases products and innovation from manufacturer partners. Another unique feature is the software usability lab, which allows developers and other staff to observe keystrokes, facial expressions, and general feedback from participants as they navigate through software or test drive new features. The data is then incorporated in the software-design process to help streamline and enhance the user experience.

The PTC started as a dental software development business called EagleSoft Inc. in 1993. When Patterson acquired EagleSoft in 1997, it had 25 employees and 1,000 customers. Today, the PTC has more than 370 employees and serves more than 80,000 customers nationwide. Please visit for more information.

Joe Blaes, DDS, Editor — e-mail: [email protected]

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