My Practice Matters ™ cares about the present and future of independent dentistry – the practitioners and patients. We believe that dental professionals and the public deserve the right to make informed choices, now and in the future.
If you are a dentist who:
- enjoys the clinical side of dentistry,
- has a patient-centred philosophy, and
- is concerned about the paradigm shift in control of the profession, and how this shift will affect your practice (short and long term), and rights of the public to choose
…you have arrived at the right place!
In My Practice Matters™ 5+ years of research into the influence of corporate dentistry, the broad shift from dentistry as a business to the business of dentistry was noted. The distinction is clear – the corporate purpose and goal is higher and higher profit; the purpose of a majority of those who have steadfastly remained independent is their devotion to a philosophy that is primarily patient centred. No matter how “good” the corporate entity, their model fails where independent practice thrives.
My Practice Matters™ investigated a multitude of symptoms as described by practitioners, auxiliaries, and patients. These all have a common denominator – interference and influence by corporate entities. And the evidence strongly indicates that the corporate model puts dentists in an ethical conflict when their fiduciary duty to the DSO interferes with the dentist’s obligations to their patient.
The Shift in Authority
Dentists are regulated as licensed professionals, so are accountable to the regulatory body. DSO/DMSO
groups are not. This has created an unequal, inequitable “playing field”. Dentists are put into the position of playing defense in an uphill battle with giant corporations which have usurped control of their profession using fear and intimidation tactics.
As a result, there has been a certain shift in authority and influence in the dental profession, as well in the doctor-patient relationship. Many dentists have expressed their observations or experienced the affects resulting from corporate interference – insurance companies unilaterally discounting fees and/or controlling what procedures that you may prescribe and render to your patients, for example. The aggressive and rapid growth of DSO-controlled practices through acquisition and merger. These are symptoms of a tactical agenda of third-parties to control the dental profession and marketplace for the sole purpose of high profits for their shareholders. Their power has resulted in a paradigm shift of authority and control of the dental profession, and rendered both dentists and the public vulnerable.
Consider the example of Australia, where dental associates compensation in corporately-managed practices has been reduced to 15%. In that country, a high percentage of DSO practices are owned and controlled by one of the largest insurance companies in the world. According to a brief from the ADA (published in DrBicuspid
newsletter, August 2015) recent studies have shown that career satisfaction and some incomes in dentistry have dropped significantly in the past decade. Read more
Power to Control
The largest DSO groups have the ADSO to advocate on their behalf, through professional lobbyists and media relations. Independent dentists do not. We consistently hear from dentists who express their frustration with the ineptitude of these organizations which have been delegated with full authority to speak and advocate for their members. Despite collecting membership fees annually they have been ineffectual in performing these duties, and are by and large not held accountable for their actions (or inaction). So even though a majority of dentists are still independent, they remain virtually silent because they are isolated and unsupported – they are the “silent majority”.
In many jurisdictions, DSO groups are unregulated. So while they control the revenue and other financial aspects of the practices in their group, they are not accountable to any authority. The dentist remains solely accountable to the public and regulator in their province/state. This gives enormous power to the DSO over dentists who operate in their practices. This control extends further to the operating or employment agreement, or Purchase and Sale contract the doctor signs with the DSO. Consider this interview with Dr. Michael Davis
Collaboration between large corporations, such as members of the ADSO
and insurance companies, is possible because they share the same profit-driven goal. They find ways to resolve shared challenges and problems because they understand that it will serve their purpose of controlling the market in order to achieve their mutual goal. So, when considering the employment of mid-level providers (“MLP”) as a cost control measure and means of lowering fees, DSO and insurance companies will have a unified position and together exert their influence on regulatory bodies to make that happen.
The larger holdings they have, the more power they have. The more power that they have to influence politicians, legislation, and consumers. This is one benefit of what is called an “economy of scale”. And economy of scale is what independent practitioners lack.
Corporations in any industry thrive when they control the message. They do what is necessary to protect the interests of their shareholders (thus insuring the sustainability of their business model). This is evident in recent request for regulation of DSO groups in North Carolina and Wisconsin, which were defeated after media relations and lobbyists advocating for the ADSO members claimed that regulating them would cause harm to the public because it would reduce access to care.
The My Practice Matters ™ Solution
In our research, My Practice Matters™ learned about the challenges facing dentists in their careers and businesses throughout North America and around the globe. DSO groups are relying on the status quo – a silent majority of independent practitioners, led by an ineffective organization, and uninformed public – to prosper. But many people believe that the independent dentistry and the public deserve better. After researching, compiling, and analyzing data and information from a multitude of sources, the My Practice Matters™ solution developed. This solution is a three-pronged approach that includes education, tools, training, and support for independent practitioners which, when applied, give you the advantage needed to compete in any market conditions.
- By embracing your ability to do what DSO dentists cannot, you will have tapped into your strength. The not-so-secret secret is the behavioral component of dentistry. The behavioral aspect of dentistry is not taught in dental school. Once dentists understand the results of this approach, they are eager to adopt it into their practice.
- The business aspect employs practice management tools that may already be available through your existing software, but that aren’t because no one in your team understand how to extract and analyze the data. i.e. KPI monitoring, and advanced patient management tools to ensure predictable and sustainable performance.
- Finally creating unity of all independent practitioners will give you the benefit of economy of scale and a strong voice speaking on your behalf on issues that matter to you and your patients. This voice can educate the public so that they can make informed choices for their family’s dental care. And when it comes to regulatory matters, you will have an advocate to act exclusively to protect the rights of patient-centred practice and patient rights, just as the ADSO advocates on behalf of their members.
This is an ambitious mission and goal that some say cannot be accomplished. My Practice Matters™ believes that this is a challenge worth investing our time, effort and skills. You, the independent dental professional, the public, and the future of independent dentistry are worth it. If you agree, read on…
One Network, One Voice
As part of a strong network of doctor-members in the My Practice Matters™ Network, you will enjoy the economy of scale necessary to be competitive. All of these benefits will take time to materialize. This is a multi-faceted, complex problem that cannot be solved using the same thinking that created it. We cannot reverse time to a place when this problem did not exist. Making the commitment to unite with your colleagues is a decision that requires action and investment today – someday is not a strategy.
- Form an international association serving the needs of all independent dental practitioners throughout North America – the NAAIDP (North American Association of Independent Dental Practitioners)
- Give our doctor-members the power to advocate for equal and equitable regulations with government and licensing bodies – hiring lobbyists and media relations experts is necessary and not inexpensive.
- Give our doctor-members unrivaled advantage negotiating with insurance companies, thereby re-establishing fair fees for service for treatment.
- Dentist-members* will be part of the Doctor-Owned & Operated™ brand, creating a transparency for the public so that they can make an informed choice. This brand identity favours independent practice, because corporately-controlled practices will no longer be able to hide in plain sight.
- Dentist-members will have a conduit to educate the public on a broad scale; resulting in a more meaningful and mutually-beneficial patient-doctor relationship
- Provide training for dentist-members to guide them in planning, preparation, and execution to achieve their vision, purpose, and goals
- Provide additional training for their personnel to help them enhance and streamline their practices, and make their teams more effective in delivering a consistent, desired patient experience
- Guiding dentist-members and their teams to develop customized management systems that meet their unique needs and expectations
- Guide and assist in dentist recruiting and placement for Locum and Associate positions
- Provide guidance, facilitation, and support for our dentist-members in succession planning and exit strategies that protect their investment and access to quality care for their patients
- Provide access to quality professional services that are customized to meet your needs, at reasonable fees
My Practice Matters Membership Levels
Annual membership fees apply to each category. Before you apply for membership, read the Terms & Conditions. Then complete the simple application form, choosing one of the options below and submit.
What Else We Do
For over a decade, Nadean and her team have been empowering patient-centred dentists and their teams, guiding and supporting them as they achieve their goal to deliver quality services to patients in their communities more effectively, and without taking an equity position. Read Testimonials
We coach and support dental practitioners through every stage of their careers – from dental school to retirement – by delivering to them the information, education and services they need to be successful. From planning to acquire an established practice or open a new practice, finding the right associate or associate position, or succession planning – dentists have been able to make confident decisions and turn challenge into opportunity. Our services are customized to meet the needs of each doctor, and include (not limited to):
- Business planning
- Practice branding
- Practice development
- Practice valuation/appraisals
- Practice performance assessment
- Practice management systems
- Review of practice appraisals
- Facilitate practice acquisition & due diligence process
- Succession planning
- Associate recruiting and placement
- Cost-share and partnership structuring
We work with accountants, lawyers, bankers, and financial planners as required to meet the needs of our clients. For those who may need a referral to one of these professional advisors, My Practice Matters™ has built relationships with a network of other knowledgeable and experienced professional advisers who share our commitment to results-oriented solutions, honesty and integrity.
Your Alternative to Corporate Dentistry™