Profit centers can affect a dentists credibility

Aug. 1, 2000
The April issue of Dental Economics had an article ("The Jameson Files") in which an Oklahoma dentist (Dr. John Jameson) did a question-and-answer interview with two dentists regarding profit centers in the dental office.

Donald M. Smith, DDS

Oklahoma City, Okla.

The April issue of Dental Economics had an article ("The Jameson Files") in which an Oklahoma dentist (Dr. John Jameson) did a question-and-answer interview with two dentists regarding profit centers in the dental office.

I find the term "profit center" offensive. I also find the concept to be unprofessional.

A nearby carwash has profit centers focusing on gasoline, detailing, and carwashing, along with the waiting room profit center which sells food, drinks, maps, and knick-knacks. I accept this approach from a carwash, but not from a dental office.

If I enter the reception area of a medical office, I don`t expect to encounter the retail sale of food and drink, blood-pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, blood-sugar monitors, or urine strips. I would further be put off if an office assistant asked me to follow him or her into the office`s laboratory profit center, and from there into the X-ray profit center.

Let`s carry this a step further. If I go to a cancer-treatment center and I am introduced to its chemotherapy profit center, its radiation profit center, and its surgery profit center, then I will perceive a conflict of interest toward my personal well-being. Likewise, I say that retail sales in the dental office affects the credibility of the professional.

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