1.8.10 Issue #409 Forward This Newsletter To A Colleague

Top Five to Make a Perfect 10 in 2010
by Sally McKenzie CEO
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2010 is here and most dentists are more than ready to embrace the promise that a new year has to offer. Last week we covered five of the top 10 steps you can take to ensure that 2010 is a perfect 10. This week, we’re looking at the numbers, starting with establishing a realistic financial goal for your practice.

Let’s say you want to achieve $700,000 in clinical production. This calculates to $14,583 per week (taking four weeks out for vacation). Working forty hours per week means you’ll need to produce about $364 per hour. If you want to work fewer hours, obviously per hour production will need to be higher. Follow these steps to get there.

#5 - Create A Clear Plan Of Action For Production

  1. Establish daily production goals and schedule to meet those goals.
  2. Make certain that your scheduling coordinator fully understands exactly how much time is needed for each procedure. You’d be stunned how many business employees simply have to guess the number of units that should be allocated for procedures.
  3. Prescribe a treatment plan for patients that includes everything that needs to be done - appointments necessary, the cost of treatment, an estimated length of treatment time, and any treatment options.
  4. Designate a treatment coordinator who is responsible for presenting treatment plans to patients and is expected to secure at least 85% case acceptance.
  5. Implement an interceptive periodontal therapy program.
  6. Provide superior customer service that will encourage patients to refer friends and family.
  7. Each month run the year-to-date Practice Analysis Report and compare it to the same period last year.

Now consider what needs to happen in the treatment room, which brings me to #4.

#4 - The Patient Needs What The Patient Needs
Continue to diagnose patient needs and wants according to your practice philosophy, not on what you perceive they can afford. Present treatment plans that convey to patients that you are presenting options to address immediate needs, long-term needs, as well as patient desires. In addition to recommending treatment according to both patient needs and wants, continue to educate patients. Emphasizing the importance of oral health and its impact on overall health has never been more important.

#3 - Monitor And Measure As A Team And Study Practice Reports
Regularly review key reports including the Accounts Receivables and Outstanding Insurance Claims reports to monitor exactly how much money is owed your practice. In addition, watch the details of your production, new patient flow, and patient retention using the production report. Depending on your software system this report may be called Production by Provider, Practice Analysis, or Production by ADA Code. It is very useful for tracking new patient comprehensive exams.

The Production by Provider report also should enable you to monitor individual provider production for each dentist and hygienist. It is important to track individual production numbers to determine productivity. Some systems will allow you to run a Production Forecast Report that can be an excellent tool in determining slow periods, so that you can develop a plan of action to address the potential production shortfalls. In monitoring each area and discussing the results, staff better comprehend the impact of one system or another on the success of the practice as a whole. They are then far less likely to sit back and watch problems continue, further strengthening the culture of accountability and minimizing the “it’s not my job” mentality.  

#2 - Watch Overhead Carefully
The industry standard for overhead is 55% of collections. If you are currently at 60-65%, you are comfortably within reach. If yours is higher, take action. Some practices report their overhead as high as 85%. They are making a mere 15 cents on the dollar! The first step in controlling overhead is to establish the following budget targets:

Dental supplies - 5%
Office supplies - 2%
Rent - 5%
Laboratory - 10%
Payroll - 20%
Payroll taxes and benefits - 3%
Miscellaneous - 10%

#1 - Make This Your Best Year Yet
Ensure that you and your team are achieving peak performance. Schedule a McKenzie Management consultant in your practice this year and watch collections increase substantially. Enjoy case acceptance as high as 85%. Consistently realize your daily production goals. Retain 95% of your patients. Achieve 33% perio production and boost overall practice production by as much as $160,000 a year. Give me a call and we’ll make sure that 2010 ranks a perfect 10 for you and your practice.

Interested in speaking to Sally about your practice concerns? Email her at sallymck@mckenziemgmt.com. Interested in having Sally speak to your dental society or study club? Click here.

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