I wrote an article at the start of the year about the Five Essential Numbers I’d be tracking and measuring in my dental practice as we start into the new year of 2021.
The fifth number of the five that I’d be tracking is this one:
How much treatment are we diagnosing in the practice each and every day?
It’s really very simple… if you’re fixing teeth and doing dentistry on a daily basis, and you’re not diagnosing or treatment planning any dentistry on those same days, then its logical to presume that sooner or later you’re going to run out of things to do.
In exactly the same way that if you keep going to the pantry and to the refrigerator and eating and drinking what you have in there, but you don’t go to the grocery store or the supermarket to buy more, then sooner or later, as the nursery rhyme says, the cupboard will be bare, and so the poor dog will have none.
“Old Mother Hubbard
Went to the Cupboard,
To give the poor Dog a bone;
When she came there,
The Cupboard was bare,
And so the poor Dog had none.”
It is simple. If we do the dentistry, we need to be doing more dentistry.
Each day our dental practice needs to diagnose and present dental treatment to our patients that is equal or greater in amount than the dentistry we are doing each day, otherwise our dental practice will become insolvent.
Now, this is NOT TO SAY that dentists should be over-diagnosing unnecessary extra treatment.
To do that would be unconscionable and totally unethical.
What I am saying is this:
Dentists need to make sure that their practice has an adequate supply or inflow of new patients that require dental treatment.
Your dental practice should know how much money an average new patient spends at your dental practice. Then you can market your practice to attract the number of new patients each month that you need.
[Simply use your dental software to summate the amount of money each of your new patients from 2019 spent on their dentistry. And divide that total amount of dentistry by the number of New Patients on that list to calculate the average New Patient value.]
Your practice also should be able to calculate what an average EXISTING patient spends at your dental practice. Using this number, we can calculate how many existing patients should be returning for hygiene on a regular basis.
[Similarly, look at your hygiene figures for 2019 and see which patients saw the hygienist and then scheduled and completed some restorative dentistry uncovered during the hygiene visit.]
These figures are available to you, in your dental practice, and SHOULD BE being used by you as the practice owner to FORECAST your dental practice future.
Because, if you’re not forecasting, then you’re only HOPING.
And if you’re hoping things will work out, then you’re probably not living the life of your dreams.
You can’t run a business, a family, a lifestyle based on hoping and wishing.
The figures are there.
Find them and use them.
And if you can’t find them, call me, and I’ll help you get sorted and back on the RIGHT ROAD to recovery.
Because the other road leads to failure, and at best, mediocrity.
Like I said at the end of the first article in this series, if you measure these five metrics each and every day, you’ll go a long way towards building the dental practice of your dreams in 2021….
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