3 Steps to Reduce Risky Payment Behavior

Keeping your practice and patient data safe is an important part of running a dental practice, whether you are accepting payments or managing records. With so many changes to technology, how can you and your practice and team stay up-to-date on best practices for data?

Join dental industry expert Kevin Henry in a conversation with security expert Heather Mark, PhD, CCEP. They will discuss three easy ways to protect your practice from data exposures or breaches. Topics will include the biggest risk factors for dental practices and how to build strong defenses to minimize exposure. Every participant will receive a Sikka Payment Guide to Compliance.

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3 Changes You Can Make in 2020 to Get Paid Faster

The new decade has arrived and if you are like the rest of us, you likely have big goals and dreams for your practice in 2020. Running a dental practice, one of the biggest challenges you face is getting your patients to pay on time. When and how you ask for payments can have a huge impact on the likelihood of you getting paid quickly.

Join dental industry expert Kevin Henry in a conversation with payments expert Don Apgar, of Sphere, as they discuss strategies to encourage and enable patients to pay on time. Tactics will include when to ask for the payment, providing convenient payment methods, and best practices for tracking and reconciling payments in your practice management system. Start 2020 strong with these simple changes to help drive timely patient payments and improve your practice cash flow.

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Webinar: 3 Ways to Grow Your Dental Practice with Facebook

Patients are using Facebook every day to share information and connect. Many are online right now, looking for a dentist. You can harness Facebook’s power to reach patients in your area with just a few simple actions. 

Join Kevin Henry in an interview with Creighton Wong from Digital Marketer MD as they discuss three easy ways to kick-start the growth of your dental practice using simple tools like Facebook Messenger. Don’t miss out on maximizing your reach with this ubiquitous platform. 

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5 Trends in Dental Fees You Should Know About

Fee setting can be one of the biggest challenges a dental practice faces. Without benchmarking data, it can be difficult to set competitive fees, maximize revenue and negotiate with the dental insurance companies.

Join Kevin Henry and Teresa Duncan, M.S. of Odyssey Consulting on August 14th as we unveil the fee trends you need to know.

Watch the webinar recording here.

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7-Year Trends for U.S. Dental Production: Part 2

Your dental practice was created as a business to help improve the oral health of your patients. But you can’t serve your patients and thrive as a practice unless you have an idea how your practice is doing.

Sikka Software has just compiled data from more than 13,000 dental practices throughout the U.S. in more than 70 different categories within the practice. In this two-part series, I’ve looked at 10 key metrics and boiled down the nationwide averages for the last seven years. Part 1 examined aspects of hygiene, preventive, and doctor production along with the number of active patients.

Part 2 looks at the seven-year trends in assistant production, patient referrals, diagnostic services, and more. These numbers are for comparison only and are not meant to convey a recommendation of any particular procedure.

Production by your assistant

So often, we think of production in terms of the dentist and the hygienist, but assistants make a huge impact on the bottom line as well. Check with your state’s laws to see what assistants can legally do, then make sure you are equipping your assistants to do everything within their scope of practice. Depending on the state, this might include fabricating night guards and bite guards, CAD/CAM dentistry, and more.

Gross production per assistant per hour
2010 $174.58
2011 $139.78
2012 $106.23
2013 $113.57
2014 $117.63
2015 $119.34
2016 $133.86
2017 $123.46

Referral patients

It’s important to know where patients are finding you or which members of your referral network are sending patients to your practice. This also leads to an examination of how your marketing dollars are working.

Use your practice management software to track this, and make sure you’re sending appreciation gifts to those businesses who are sending customers to your business.

Referral patients per practice per month
2010 40.75
2011 44.33
2012 46.58
2013 49.50
2014 50.92
2015 53.50
2016 54.17
2017 56.41

Periodic exams and diagnostic services

How many checkups does your practice schedule and complete each month? If you’re like the U.S. average, you’re seeing more than ever, which is a good thing, as the hygiene department is often the lifeblood of a practice. If you’re not seeing an influx of six-month recall appointments right now, it’s a good time to figure out why not.

No. of periodic exams per month
2010 51.67
2011 50.75
2012 50.42
2013 50.5
2014 50.92
2015 53.17
2016 54.83
2017 56.42

We looked a comprehensive list of diagnostic codes ranging from bitewings to 3D cone-beam CT scans to determine diagnostic services performed per month. We saw a bit of a dip in 2017.

This was a bit of a surprise to see with all of the technology available to dental practices today. Some patients are still resistant to any kind of radiology, so how do you explain the benefits of imaging to them? Do you have a script ready when any resistance is thrown your way?

Diagnostic services per month
2010 371.83
2011 376.92
2012 380.83
2013 394.92
2014 411.50
2015 435.25
2016 438.25
2017 427.83

Accounts receivable

Thankfully, the numbers in this category went down last year. In fact, they’re at their lowest mark since 2011, which is excellent news.

Your practice was not created to be a business where patients owe you money for extended periods of time. If you’re finding yourself drowning in accounts receivable, make a change. That might include billing more frequently, offering different forms of financing, or asking for full payment when your patients checks out. (Note: The following table covers 2011 through 2017, while the rest of the tables cover 2010 through 2017.)

Accounts receivable longer than 90 days
2011 $41,111.14
2012 $48,579.92
2013 $51,584.39
2014 $52,571.54
2015 $49,598.06
2016 $47,736.21
2017 $47,003.15

Alitta Boechler is the director of digital marketing at Sikka Software. You can email her alitta.boechler@sikkasoftware.com. Get a head start on 2018 with a free 10-procedure fee survey for your ZIP code from the app Practice Mobilizer at www.practicemobilizer.com. The full fee survey with more than 600 procedures for three ZIP codes can be purchased at sikkasoft.com.

This article was originally published July 25, 2018, on DrBicuspid. You can view the original article here.


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5 Surprising Numbers from 2017

For the first time, Sikka Software will be releasing its latest data on dental practices around the country for the year 2017.

What was the average gross production for the dentist and hygienist? What were the average number of new patients per practice? How about the average AR carried before and after 90 days? These questions and more will be answered and dissected.

Join Kevin Henry and Dayna Johnson on July 17 as we unveil this critical information!

Watch the webinar here.

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Top 10 Best Practices to Manage your Social Media and Online Presence

Check out our webinar featuring dental industry expert Kevin Henry in an interview with social media expert Rita Zamora. They discuss simple ways to grow your online presence and reputation, through social media, reviews, and interactions. Many patients are turning to online review and social media platforms to find and screen new providers and in this webinar, Rita helps you get the most out of your presence.

With 16 years in the dental publishing industry, Kevin Henry is the former group editorial director for Dental Products Report and managing editor for Dental Economics. He was recently named as one of the top five influential voices in the industry on Twitter (@kgh23).

Rita Zamora is the author of the new book, Get Found, Get Liked, Get Patients – Making the Most of Social Media. She is an international speaker and the owner of Rita Zamora Connections, a social media marketing agency. Since 2007 she and her team have offered experienced social media training and custom monthly management services for general and specialty practices across the country. Rita served as a Contributing Faculty Member on the topic of marketing for the American Dental Association Center for Success Certificate Program. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Colorado with a bachelor’s degree in business and marketing. With over 20 years experience in the business of dentistry, she also brings a solid understanding of the dental world to the table.

Watch the webinar.

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Streamline Your Workflow and Increase Your Cash Flow

Check out our webinar featuring dental expert Kevin Henry in an interview with Sikka Software’s in-house practice workflow expert, Tony Bojorquez, on Hydra. They discuss how Hydra Smartboard guides team members through daily tasks, so nothing is missed! See how each team member has role-specific tasks, can compare the percentage of tasks completed and send HIPAA compliant chat messages. Plus get a special discount code for your first month.

With 16 years in the dental publishing industry, Kevin Henry is the former group editorial director for Dental Products Report and managing editor for Dental Economics. He was recently named as one of the top five influential voices in the industry on Twitter (@kgh23). 

Watch the webinar recording here.

For those who couldn’t attend our live session, you can watch this event and all Sikka Webinar recordings at bit.ly/SikkaWebinars


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5 Online Reputation Killers

A positive online reputation is critical for healthcare providers trying to attract new patients to their practices. Yet many providers damage their online reputations every day — most without realizing it!

If you’re looking to attract and acquire new patients to your practice, a positive online reputation is critical to your success. Are you slowly killing your online reputation?

Check out our webinar featuring dental expert Kevin Henry in his interview with PatientPop’s practice growth specialist, Norm Schrager, to find out. These experts focus on tips to help you overcome and avoid the top 5 most common online reputation pitfalls and best practices that you can take to improve your online reputation now.

Click here to watch the recording.

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Most Effective Ways for Dentists to Attract New Patients

Check out our webinar featuring dental expert Kevin Henry in an interview with Jason Dolle, Founder and CEO of Testimonial Tree, on actionable ways to attract new patients. They discuss the most effective marketing methods dentists can use to meet their goals. Click here to watch the recording.

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