Dentists’ greatest concerns about practice management addressed in CDA Journal collection

September 7, 2023
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Quick Summary:
The discussions, review articles and guidance in this latest CDA Journal collection cover all aspects of running a dental practice. Readers will learn how to create an annual business plan to achieve practice success; how to foster employee engagement and retention and how hygiene can remain the "backbone" of the dental practice. Other articles discuss practice evaluation and the economics of PPo benefit plans in private dental practice.

“CDA member surveys and focus groups indicate that the greatest concerns facing dentists today have little to do with clinical dentistry and everything to do with managing a dental practice,” writes Natasha A. Lee, DDS, in the introduction to the latest collection of the Journal of the California Dental Association.

The collection’s discussions, review articles and guidance cover all aspects of running a dental practice, from creating an annual business plan to achieve practice success to fostering employee engagement and retention and understanding the practice evaluation process.

“With a better understanding of practice management concepts such as those presented in this collection, running an efficient, financially sustainable practice, with a great team, happy patients and a fulfilled dentist, can still be fully realized,” adds Dr. Lee, a CDA past president and practicing dentist in San Francisco.

Creating an annual business plan for a successful practice

Understanding the steps to creating an annual business plan is a cornerstone of a dental practice’s success, yet an annual “Preparedness to Practice” survey published by the American Dental Education Association showed that “only 58% agreed or strongly agreed that they felt prepared to manage a successful business.”

In “8 Steps for Creating an Annual Business Plan for Dental Practice Success,” the author provides an 8-step guide to creating a business plan that will result in a profitable practice that supports the dentist’s professional and financial goals. 

Fostering employee engagement and retention

“Upcoming and existing generations are searching for more meaning and purpose in their employment,” writes Paul Etchison, DDS, in “Practice Management: Fostering Engagement and Retention in the New Labor Market.”

Dr. Etchison discusses how developing a practice mission everyone on the dental team will want to fulfill helps create that purpose employees are seeking. As a result, the dental team will be more engaged and dentists will retain those engaged employees. For example, Etchison suggests adding day-to-day patient “touch points” to the practice mission, as sharing examples of successful patient care outcomes will give team members “the opportunity to be heroes each day.” 

Hygiene as the ‘backbone’ of the practice

Other articles discuss the practice evaluation process, the economics of PPO benefit plans in private dental practice, and how, despite current labor challenges, hygiene can remain the backbone of the dental practice with creative recruitment strategies and attention to consistent care guidelines. 

Read Practice Management Insights, the latest CDA Journal collection.

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