COVID-19 Effect on Dental Industry and Implications for your Practice

Join us for an insight-packed webinar, hosted by dental industry expert Kevin Henry in conversation with Rory Byrne, General Manager of Fintech at Sikka, as they shed light on the economic impact on U.S. dental practices. Using Sikka’s data, they will provide an in-depth analysis of Sikka’s interactive U.S. heat map, and discuss ways that practices can stay productive during this downtime and prepare for reopening.

Watch the webinar.

With more than 16 years in dental publishing at Dental Products Report, Dental Economics and, Kevin Henry was recently named as one of the top five influential voices in the industry. Kevin has conducted numerous webinars and presentations, advising dental professionals how to more effectively manage their practices and enhance their patients’ oral health outcomes. You can follow Kevin on Twitter at @kgh23.

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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: Fees, Profitability and Optimizing Your Practice

Update your fees every six months to keep aligned with the cost of living, labs, salaries, procedure mixes, and geographical trends.

Join Vijay Sikka, CEO of Sikka Software, for a free webinar on Fees, Profitability and Optimizing your Practice (the best 45 minutes of your time to enhance practice profitability).

Watch the webinar recording here.

Or get started with a fee survey for dentists or vets. Surveys include data for up to three zip codes and will help you keep up-to-date with lab costs, salaries, what other professionals are charging and more!

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Podcast: Top 5 Statistics All Dentists Should Know

Welcome back to the Sikka Software Podcast! Here at Sikka we are passionate about bringing you tools and solutions that benefit your patients and your practice.

Today, we’ll be giving you the breakdown of five key metrics that all dentists should know in order to make sure that their practice is maintaining profitability and serving all patients effectively. Utilizing these statistics will help practices run more efficiently and help providers better serve their patients.

Number One: No Shows to Appointments. If you’re getting a high amount of no shows relative to appointments, the problem may not be with the patient. A high amount of no shows means that a practice needs to look at their communication practices. We consider more than 1 in 100 appointments being no shows to be abnormal. Be sure to send reminder messages to your patients prior to their scheduled appointment times on a medium where they’re likely to see it.

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Podcast: Sikka Success Score – An Authoritative Peer Benchmark for Retail Healthcare

Hi everyone, welcome back to the Sikka Software Podcast. Here at Sikka we are passionate about bringing you tools and solutions that benefit your patients AND your practice. Today we are going to introduce you a powerful benchmarking index available on our Practice Optimizer and Practice Mobilizer – The Sikka Success Score.  As a practitioner, you can benefit from the score by comparing your own performance to other practices across the country, identifying areas that could use improvement, and building actionable growth plans. We will also give you a view of how this Score is calculated.

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Podcast: Top 3 Statistics All Veterinarians Should Know

Welcome back to the Sikka Podcast! Here at Sikka we are passionate about bringing you tools and solutions that benefit your patients AND your practice. We have talked about some key metrics and features that you should pay extra attention to as a retail healthcare owner in the past few episodes. Today, we would like to focus on veterinary practices management specifically. We will walk you through 3  critical metrics or benchmarks for veterinarians, in order to help veterinary teams better monitor their practices and identify areas of strength and opportunities to grow.

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Podcast: Why Your Practice Needs a Mobile App

Welcome back to the Sikka Podcast! Here at Sikka we are passionate about bringing you tools and solutions that benefit your patients AND your practice.

For a small healthcare business, a doctor may also be the business owner, which makes doctors’ daily work quite challenging. Recent surveys show that many doctors are complaining about the limited time spent with patients and the growing burden of busywork generated by their electronic medical record system or EMR. According to a survey of 142 family doctors, conducted by Annals of Family Medicine,  doctors spent more than half of their work time on average dealing with administrative work. As the procedures costs and the amount of patient data constantly grow, many doctors find it really hard to properly manage their practices, which can be directly reflected in the rising dissatisfaction and complaints from patients.

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Sikka in the News: AAHA Trends

Vijay Sikka recently spoke to AAHA Trends about digital technology and the animal health industry. They discussed the ways in which apps are changing how veterinarians run the business side of their practices. This includes how API technology drives the accessibility of information and how an ecosystem helps practitioners find the specific tools they need. Plus, a discussion of some of the apps available today from Sikka and our partners.

You can read the full article 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 Get a head start on 2018 with a free 10-procedure fee survey for your ZIP code from the app Practice Mobilizer at The full fee survey with more than 600 procedures for three ZIP codes can be purchased at

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


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