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JAN
14
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The 7 Pain Points - Tim Caudrelier

The 7 Pain Points - Tim Caudrelier

Running a successful dental practice, like any small business takes time, effort, perseverance and a little luck. It can be a mammoth step-change going from practising as an associate dentist to owning and operating your own dental practice, and without the essential support and guidance of experts, clinicians will be relying on more than just a little luck.

 

For instance, there can be many reasons why a particular strategy or business approach doesn't garner the results you desire, but without the experienced know-how of business specialists, dentists may find they lack the commercial insight needed for their practice to be a success.

 

Naturally, such insights are gathered over a long period of experience – lots of trial and error – and are based on seeing first hand what works and what doesn't. Having worked with dental practices for many years, at 7connections we have established the following 7 pain points that at some time every practice will have to overcome in order to succeed.

 

1. Lack of Balance

In a recent survey that asked what factors are most important to the UK population, 53.7% said work-life balance was the top concern.[i] And yet according to data from the office of national statistics, almost one in two adults report low satisfaction with their work life balance.[ii]

 

As a practice owner, you can spend 28-35 hours a week performing clinical activity, and then still have to run your business; this can be at least another 10 hours! Achieving a balance therefore requires reducing the time spent working, which means either getting a better team or utilising better systems.

 

2. Lack of Profitability

When you work hard, you naturally want to see your business making money. However, most practices will suffer at some point from a lack of profitability. In short, if your practice costs more to operate than the amount of revenue generated, then it will soon face real problems. But if you employ the correct model and well-established systems this can easily be avoided.

 

3. Lack of Growth

Business growth is essential, you should aim for growth to be at least in line with inflation, and more if you want to eventually sell for a profit. Therefore if you experience a drop in turnover or a lack of progress across your business, it’s time to consider a change.

 

4. Lack of New Patients

A dental practice will always need new patients. To achieve a steady flow, all you need is 20 leads per full time dental surgery per month. Ideally these patients will spend between £1,500 and £1,700 in their first year with you. This will help deliver the sustainable growth required. But bear in mind that every aspect of your practice affects how new patients invest in your services. From your marketing to your systems, to the way your reception looks, it is essential the patient journey reflect the demographic you want to attract.

 

5. Lack of Team Trust

For any successful business, you need a motivated team who all perform and behave according to your exacting brand standards. However, developing and maintaining a dedicated workforce can be one of the biggest challenges you’ll face. Remember any system you create is only as good as the people you have implementing it.

 

6. Lack of Systems

We talk a lot about systems, and for any business to be a success it needs well thought out systems that underline everything you do. Every part of your business should have a system that exists in a manual that your team can refer to and implement. To begin with this requires a lot of hard work, but will ensure that later down the line, your business is ready for the future growth and expansion you desire.

 

7. Lack of Productivity

A key component of success for any dental practice comes down to the individual profitability of every fee-earner in the business. It’s vital to analyse the productivity and profitability of each clinician, and to ensure they are always kept busy – and in order to do that you need leads and conversions.

 

The Solution

If these pain points are sounding familiar there are solutions that will help to address them all. In order to fix these points and build your business you will need to optimise every part of your practice – both through the right use of human resources, and through implementing efficient systems and protocols.

 

The best place to start this is in reviewing your Patient Journey and evaluating how you attract and retain new patients. The much discussed seven-step principle known as ‘lifecycle marketing’, can help you to optimise this process, as it effectively encapsulates the process of attracting new patients and retaining them by building and developing long-term relationships.

 

For more information about 7connections, please call 01647 478145 or email pThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Alternatively, please visit the new website www.7connections.com.

 



[ii] 48.4% of UK adults reported relatively low satisfaction with their work-life balance. Office for national statistics, http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/mro/news-release/measuring-well-being-initiative-highlights-work-life-balance/whatwedonr0312.html [accessed 13.3.15]

 

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JAN
14
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Treating obese patients- Dean Hallows A-dec

Treating obese patients- Dean Hallows A-dec

Statistics suggest that by 2050 60 per cent of men and 50 per cent of women in the UK will be obese – currently, the figures stand at around 15.5 million adults.[1]

 

The health issues that can be demonstrably linked with obesity are well documented: conditions such as type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, cancer, strokes, liver disease, gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD), joint pain and depression are more likely to affect people with a high Body Mass Index (BMI).[2]

 

What is significantly less documented is the difficulties healthcare providers can have treating obese patients. This is particularly important for dental practitioners, since obesity is also linked to an increased risk of periodontal disease and poor oral hygiene.

 

One of the most prevalent issues currently is the capability of dental chairs to support patients over a certain weight. There have been reports of dentists turning away patients on account of the inability of their dental unit to safely and efficiently carry a heavier load.[3]

 

Indeed, research undertaken on modern dental chairs has recently shown that most units are only capable of bearing loads of up to 23st (146kg). Typically, those who fall within the obese BMI bracket weigh from 22st upwards (143kg) rendering the majority of dental chairs unsuitable.[4]

  

This, of course, presents significant problems to both patients and practitioners. If dentists cannot serve all of their patients, they will lose business to those who are better equipped – and if they choose to turn patients away on the grounds of weight, they may find themselves facing legal action through the Disability Discrimination Act (2005). For patients, it restricts the provision of oral healthcare.[5]     

 

To this end, it is worth considering a dental chair from A-dec. With units that can carry heavier loads than competitive products (up to 29st (181kg)), a long-standing focus on comfort, ergonomics and reliability, A-dec is the obvious choice for any dental professional passionate about providing the best care for everyone.

 

Regardless of size, age or any other differentiating factor, every patient who walks through your door deserves to be treated fairly, equally and excellently. Do not let your equipment be an excuse to discriminate against anyone – invest in high-quality products that will allow you give each individual patient the best treatment possible.

 

 

For more information about A-dec Dental UK Ltd, visit:

www.a-dec.co.uk

 

 



[1] Public Health England: About Obesity; link: http://www.noo.org.uk/NOO_about_obesity [accessed on 18/08/15]

[2] NHS Choices: Obesity; link: http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Obesity/Pages/Introduction.aspx [accessed on 18/08/15]

[3] BDJ: Obesity and dentistry: a growing problem – D. Reilly, C. Boyle, D. Craig; published online, 2009; link: http://www.nature.com/bdj/journal/v207/n4/full/sj.bdj.2009.717.html [accessed on 18/08/15]

[4] Ibid.

[5] Ibid.

 

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JAN
14
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Bringing you the best of new technology

b2ap3_thumbnail_Bringing-you-the-best-of-new-technology.jpg

For over 40 years, Clark Dental has brought you the most cutting-edge dental equipment from around the globe. The most recent additions to their high-quality range are from market-leader, Sirona, and includes:

 

The XIOS Scan: this innovative product allows you to easily digitise conventional radiographs to an exceptional standard. After exposure, specifically designed imaging plates are inserted into the XIOS Scan where, thanks to an outstanding scan quality of up to 22 line pairs/mm, incredibly sharp digital images are produced and sent directly to your computer. With the XIOS Scan, you will no longer need to develop radiographs with environmentally harmful chemicals – nor disrupt your tried-and-tested diagnostic workflow.  

 

The ORTHOPHOS SL range: a multifunctional range of radiographic systems, ORTHOPHOS SL can offer you incomparably sharp 2D images, thanks to the powerful DCS sensor and unique Sharp Layer Technology. Then, either upgrade your system with an optional Ceph arm or choose full 3D utility. Alternatively, take advantage of the fully dedicated 3D system which is available in two flexible levels of volume range, from 8 x 8cm or 11 x 10cm, that will help you easily create perfect 3D images without having to unnecessarily increase the radiation dose for your patient.

 

For all the latest in exceptional dental technologies, contact Clark Dental today. 

 

For more information call Clark Dental on 01268 733 146, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.clarkdental.co.uk  

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JAN
14
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Building Highly Skilled Practice Teams of Tomorrow - Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing

Building Highly Skilled Practice Teams of Tomorrow - Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing

Introducing the new Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing – an exciting opportunity for modern dental practices to develop a highly skilled team – brought to you by Healthcare Learning and Barnet and Southgate College in London.

 

A leading supplier of dental education, Healthcare Learning will deliver high quality content and on-going support for all apprentices. Widely recognised learning platforms such as the Dental Nurse Education Zone (DNEZ) will also be made available to apprentices, offering them even more resources to complete their studies and maintain their skills in the long-term.

 

Barnet and Southgate College has extensive experience in successfully providing a wide range of high quality apprenticeship programmes across various different industries, and will be delivering first-rate classroom-based workshops for dental nurse apprentices as well as providing full quality assurance for the overall programme.

 

Benefits of getting involved

 

The first clear benefit for practices getting involved with the programme is that their apprentices will learn on the job, developing the hands-on skills and experience they need to excel in the role of a dental nurse. What’s more, the majority of the course is delivered through online webinars from Healthcare Learning, so apprentices will need to take little time away from the practice.

 

The programme reflects all the clinical responsibilities of modern dental nurses, equipping them with the knowledge, skills, behaviours and practical workplace experience they need to perform the role effectively. For the practice, this affords complete confidence in the capabilities of the apprentice upon completion of the course to fulfil the duties of a dental nurse effectively. Plus, team members working alongside apprentices have an opportunity to help mould them into highly accomplished professionals, who understand and align with the principles and values of the existing team and business.

 

For practices that meet the criteria, there is also extensive funding to subsidise the costs of training each apprenticeship. The government has pledged to boost apprenticeships by creating 3 million programmes by 2020 and the Dental Nursing programme is a key beneficiary of this initiative. Therefore, the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) will deliver £2 for every £1 the practice invests, up to the £6,000 core funding cap. For practices that qualify for all the additional government incentives, while they will initially invest £3,000 per apprentice, they are set to receive £3,600 in rebates once the course is completed and so will actually benefit by £600 per apprentice.

 

A bright future

 

The Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing provides students with a Level 3 Diploma in Dental Nursing, which is equivalent to two A-levels. Not only does this enable apprentices to register with the GDC and embark on a long and successful professional career in dentistry, but it also offers enormous potential for them to undertake further training in order to advance and move onto senior roles. All this continues to benefit the practice – highly motivated staff with the chance to progress can help expand the services available and drive the business forwards.

 

Intake for the apprenticeship programme begins every few months with the next start dates in early 2016. An eligibility criteria form is available to provide a quick assessment of candidates’ suitability for the course. Generally, candidates need a grade C or above in GCSE English and Maths.

 

The Apprenticeship in Dental Nursing provides a fantastic opportunity to develop a highly skilled and experienced workforce for the future success of every dental practice. Find out more today.

 

 

For more information or applications contact Healthcare Learning

 Tel: 020 7400 8989

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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JAN
13
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You don’t have to do this - letter to a wavering dentist.

You don’t have to do this - letter to a wavering dentist.

You don’t have to do this - a letter to a wavering dentist.

Is this really what you want to do? You don’t have to.

Many students have made their decisions to study dentistry at university in their mid-teens, an age when they are neither mature nor in possession of great insight.

Parents, family and teachers see dentistry as a well-remunerated, successful profession with a secure future. Well positioned on any socially acceptable list that makes it traditionally attractive to the children of immigrants. My mother, a migrant from Ireland was determined that both her children would have professions, her background, in nursing, favoured the medical. I became a dentist, my brother a doctor.

How many of us have the nerve to say that it’s not what they want? Many dentists are ill suited to a profession that makes extensive physical, mental and emotional demands on its members. I am not convinced that the undergraduate course prepares students for the rigours of general practice.

After 5 undergraduate years and now carrying a large student debt it takes a brave new graduate to dare admit to parents and family that they have studied the wrong subject. If you have a degree in humanities or pure sciences you are fortunate to be able to continue with your subject. Only with a “vocational” degree is the graduate able, and expected, to follow a career pathway.

Socially, turning away is akin to failing to show up at your own wedding. An individual might be secretly admired for admitting that they don’t feel the commitment needed for a happy marriage but it’s a brave dentist who says that they have done the wrong thing.

Turn things on their head, if you know in your heart of hearts that you are going to be unfulfilled and unhappy being a dentist isn’t it better to say so sooner rather than later? How many more miserable years can you tolerate? How much stress and heartache can you endure once you have admitted to yourself that you’re in the wrong place?

Far too many dentists have plodded on through degree, foundation training, associateship, partnership, marriage and children all carrying with them increasing financial pressures.

They thinking that this is the way that it has to be, that it will get better, easier, less of trial to get out of bed in the morning - next year. They live from holiday to holiday and get absolutely no fulfilment or satisfaction from the clinical work that they do or the people for whom they are supposed to care.

Often they succumb to the stressors. One of my contemporaries only accepted that he had a problem when he needed a quarter bottle of vodka to start work in the morning and was facing his third drink driving conviction.

I have attended funerals of successful and apparently happy dentists who have taken their own lives because they could only see one way out.

These problems are not unique to dentists and many people “live lives of quiet desperation” so I would encourage them to change also, if they can.

What else is possible?

The answer is anything that you want to be. There are ex-dentists who are successful architects, writers, lawyers, musicians and businessmen. I know of one former specialist orthodontist who now builds dry-stone walls (and will also teach you how to build them). The discipline of your training means that you are suited to re-train in many disciplines.

Let’s not forget those people who are stuck in a rut. NHS dentistry has never embraced excellence, though lots of good work is done in spite of the system. You will never perform at the highest level on the conveyor belt of UDAs or whatever imposed system of production is in vogue this year.

If you are having second thoughts then I suggest that you examine your reasons. If you feel that you aren’t right for a job that demands a high standard of manual dexterity in order to practice at its best then you should explore your options.

Darwin says that empathy is instinctive not learned, so if you are not a person-person will you be happy going against the grain and attempting to gain the trust of your patients day in day out for the next 30 years?

If you are doing it just for the money, you will probably be disappointed at the amount of further training, dedication to a career pathway and sheer hard work that it will take. You might get a better return on the invested time in some other field.

On the other hand if you stay and you choose to dedicate yourself to a unique discipline, then every day will give a new challenge. You have the opportunity to grow as the leader of a team in a niche where you help your patients not only to achieve and maintain an important element of their general health but also to have an enhanced sense of confidence, comfort and function.

If you want to be happier then say so, and do something. This isn’t a rehearsal, there is no second chance, no re-run, no “it’ll be all right on the night”. If you want to be better nobody can do it for you. If you need help ask those who have already done it, study excellence and embrace it.

Polonius said to his son:

“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”

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Recent comment in this post
Gaurav Vij

Great post....

Great post and sums it up succinctly. My experience is very few are cut out to be dentists. You are basically a surgeon in the cla... Read More
Saturday, 16 January 2016 07:20
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JAN
12
0

Humbly Addressing Conservation

Humbly Addressing Conservation

Prince William recently addressed the Chinese population, citing that without action, rhinos and elephants could be extinct by the time Princess Charlotte reaches her 25th birthday. Unfortunately, the giant panda is also among the top ten most endangered species in the world.

 

Although there is some good news – the Chinese government reports the population of endangered wild pandas has risen over 17% in just over a decade[i], they’re still extremely vulnerable. Greenpeace recently reported that Loggers in China’s southwest are destroying giant panda sanctuaries, chopping down more than 3,200 acres of natural forest in the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries[ii].

 

The elements of the initial endangerment of pandas are still very real today. Wild pandas have retreated into fragmented and constricted areas of central China, squeezed in by agriculture, mountains and arid lands where bamboo stocks dwindle in the winter months. With the added threat climate change poses to mountain ecosystems, it’s ever more vital to cultivate panda-friendly bamboo forests enabling them to move on if climate adversely affects the growth of bamboo in one particular region1.

 

In the quest to protect the world’s wild pandas and make useful products in environmentally friendly materials, Phyllostachys edulis or Moso Bamboo, plays a key role. Known to grow up to 28 metres high at a rate of 1 metre per day[iii], it is the fastest growing, sustainable plant on earth. Its antibacterial qualities negate the need for pesticides during its growth and although it’s as strong as some metals, it’s also 100% biodegradable.

 

Moso leaves sprout at about 5 metres up and pandas don’t eat them because they can’t reach that high. But their diet is still mainly bamboo, which has little nutritional value, so an average panda requires 26 to 84 pounds per day. If Moso bamboo alone is used in the manufacture of building and consumer products, the further 42 species of bamboo pandas eat can be preserved and partly cultivated by themselves as they roam and disperse seeds naturally[iv].

 

The Humble Brush is a conservation and environmentally friendly toothbrush that utilises Moso bamboo’s admirable attributes – the handles are modelled out of this 100% biodegradable material. The Humble Brush helps reduce our plastic footprints by offering an alternative that is kind to our land and ecosystems. What’s more, for every Humble Brush sold, equivalent oral care is provided to people in need.

 

Help our environments, people and endangered species by choosing the Humble Brush toothbrush today.

 

 

For more information about the Humble Brush visit www.humblebrush.co.uk or to find out more about the Humble Smile Foundation’s work visit www.humblesmile.org

 

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

@HumbleBrush

 

 

 



[i] National Geographic: Wild Panda Population Up Dramatically in China, Government Says, Jennifer S. Holland, March 2015. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2015/03/150302-giant-pandas-animals-science-conservation-china/ (Accessed 21/10/2015)

[ii] Thomson Reuters Foundation. Loggers In China Destroying Parts Of Panda Sanctuary – Greenpeace. http://www.trust.org/item/20151021093829-f4979/ (Accessed 23/10/2015)

[iii]  Moso®. Moso Bamboo: The Fastest Growing Plant In The World! http://www.moso.eu/en/bamboo/sustainability

[iv] WWF:What Do Pandas Eat? And Other Giant Panda Facts. http://www.worldwildlife.org/stories/what-do-pandas-eat-and-other-giant-panda-facts (Accessed 21/10/2015)

 

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JAN
12
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Selling your dental practice: do it right - Portman Dental

Selling your dental practice: do it right

Many practice sales agents will use percentage of turnover to value a practice – which can lead to an unrealistic expectation on which many vendors, particularly those approaching retirement, will base their futures.

 

There is a significant problem with this; a valuation through percentage of turnover is an increasingly unreliable way of valuing a dental practice. It only works on the assumption that the practice that is being sold is just like other practices in the area which, unless it happens to be a predominately NHS practice, is unlikely. Yet the majority of practice sales agents work with this method – and will charge from anywhere between 2-4% for doing so, equating to thousands of pounds in fees.
 

The fundamental issue with percentage of turnover is that it disregards many important factors that may affect the actual value of a practice – factors that you can be sure a buyer (and the buyer’s bank) will be quick to scrutinise, like the type of dentistry being delivered, the quality and state of equipment, the sustainability of the practice and the potential for expansion. In fact, by disregarding these factors, valuation through percentage of turnover begins to look a great deal like guesswork – particularly expensive guesswork – which completely ignores one essential aspect that will ultimately mean more to any buyer than any other: profitability! By failing to take a practice’s overall profitability into account, as well as the assets and the liabilities on the balance sheet, any valuation is bound to be unreliable, unrealistic and, ultimately, unachievable.
 

Why, then, do many practice sales agents continue to use this method? Firstly, it is quicker – a valuation based on turnover can be calculated relatively easily as long as the practice’s accounts are well-maintained. Secondly, the agent’s main objective is to acquire the initial commission to sell the practice, collect the fee and move on. They are not required to become invested in the priorities that the vendor might have – like ensuring the welfare of patients and staff or finding a buyer who can continue to uphold the standards and ideals that the practice has come to represent. Their remit is to find a buyer who is willing to pay and complete the transaction; they have no real reason to search with you for the ‘right’ buyer.  
 

Therefore, finding the right practice sales agent – one who will provide you with a service which is truly represented by the fees charged – is one of the most important elements of selling a dental practice. It can ultimately save a great deal of time, anxiety and cost if you find an agent who is willing to go the extra mile in the first place. Ideally, you need someone who is sensitive to the specific features of your practice and the individual needs you exhibit as a vendor. You need someone who has taken the time to understand your motivations for selling, who understands the overarching philosophy of the practice and duly considers a buyer on these terms and, most importantly, who has the expertise and experience to thoroughly analyse the practice’s accounts in order to establish a realistic and achievable sales price.

 

For more information about joining the Portman Dental team, please visit www.portmanhealthcare.co.uk or call Gary Chapman on 0207 281 9489 or 07966698130

 

Gary Chapman is the Head of Mergers and Acquisitions at Portman Dental. A qualified dental technician with over 30 years’ experience in the dental industry, including running his own dental laboratory and a Harley Street facial aesthetics clinic, as well as working as the Director of Acquisitions at James Hull Associates, Gary has a unique understanding of the profession. He now uses his extensive expertise to help the Portman Dental Group grow and, to date, he has identified all but two of the practices acquired by Portman Healthcare.

 

 

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JAN
12
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Consistent quality - Quintess Denta

Consistent quality - Quintess Data

Your dental handpiece may be one of the most important pieces of equipment in your surgery. Indispensible in general dentistry, specialist treatments and much more, the handpiece is truly one product that the majority of dental practitioners could not live without.
 

For this reason alone, it is essential that you invest in nothing but the very highest quality pieces. Sub-standard or counterfeit products can result in accident or injury and legal dispute.
 

The production quality of your handpiece is a pertinent consideration. Knowing where your next product has been made and whether it conforms to CE regulations is vital to ensuring the enduring quality of a handpiece. There has recently been a spate of counterfeit products entering the UK market which presents a particular threat to the overall safety of dental equipment. Far cheaper but less reliable than genuine handpieces, these products can malfunction and injure both patients and practitioners. It is, therefore, vitally important to ensure you know where the product you are considering has been built and by which trusted manufacturer.
 

Once you have purchased the handpiece that best meets your clinical needs, it is important that you ensure to maintain it adequately. Not only is this prudent for financial reasons, it will also reduce the risk of malfunction. With an operational speed of up to 400,000 rpm, the damage a faulty handpiece can inflict on the soft tissues of the oral cavity can be extensive and irreversible.
 

But choosing a company to fulfil your maintenance needs can be as difficult as choosing a handpiece in the first place – and there are a number of considerations for which you must account before making any decisions.
 

·      Firstly, you must be sure that the parts and replacements a repair company is using in your handpieces are of the highest quality from reputable manufacturers.

·      You must also be assured that your handpieces will be returned promptly and reliably: being without your equipment will cause unnecessary delays.

·      Cost-effectiveness is a major factor and finding a balance between price and quality is essential.
 

By offering exceptional quality and expertise, you can be sure the repair work Quintess Denta undertake will always be of the highest standard – but what sets it apart from the competition is its unwavering focus on customer support and service. What’s more, the team at Quintess Denta are dedicated to providing relevant, money-saving tips that will enable dentists to substantially cut their maintenance costs.

 

 

For more information visit www.quintessdenta.com, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us on 028 6862 8966

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12
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You’re never too old to wear a brace - Tim Bradstock-Smith

You’re never too old to wear a brace

With near-invisible options available, plus faster treatment times, it is no surprise that more adults than ever before are embarking on orthodontic treatment.
 

With the means to afford it, they know that improving their teeth will benefit them professionally as well as personally, particularly if they add an adjunctive treatment like whitening. Orthodontics are now much more stable than they were in the past; correcting work they had done as a child is also highly appealing.
 

It is far easier to practice a successful oral care routine and keep the mouth clean if teeth are aligned properly and gaps closed up. Correct a patient’s bite and you can reduce toothwear too. A course of orthodontics may also prevent problems with the gingiva getting worse.
 

However, it might be the case that not only do you not currently offer orthodontic treatment, but that you have no plans to do so either. The cutting-edge OPG machines and 3D scanners on the market are exciting, yet out of the reach for many, particularly if you are only seeing a couple of potential cases a month. The technology is moving fast and staff need to be trained and retrained.
 

Referrals are not something to be feared - you will not ‘lose’ your patient. Instead, referring out can enhance and expand your treatment provision. It can also be a conduit to building and consolidating loyalty. By referring people out to a trusted partner, you are saying that, although you do not have the resources to provide the required orthodontics yourself, you want to give your patient a successful route through the (expensive) minefield. Especially if their previous experience of this kind of treatment was not a positive one, you will be supporting patients to improve their smile and oral health with the help of a clinician that you trust.
 

Adult orthodontic patients have high expectations of aesthetically pleasing and stable results.  They are aware of the choice out there and will use the internet to look at practitioner reviews and compare pricing. They will know what they want to achieve, including a reassurance that they are in safe hands. Choose your referral partner wisely – you want to feel confident about a successful outcome every time. For example, The London Smile Clinic has world-class specialists, plus has the latest technology already in place to guarantee fantastic results for even the most complex problems.
 

Investing time and money in developing new services can be daunting and, for many practices, an impossible notion. Referrals can be an easy solution to the rise in demand for adult orthodontics. The right referring clinic will work with you to allay your patients’ fears and promote the benefits of the latest ethical and minimally invasive techniques. It is therefore crucial to find the best referring partner for you, to make life easier for your patients as well as guaranteeing excellent results.  

 

For more information, please contact The London Smile Clinic on 020 7255 2559 or visit www.londonsmile.co.uk.

 

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12
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Provide the best service, to everyone - Nicola Lomas Goodman Grant Lawyers for Dentists

Provide the best service, to everyone

A Tesco store recently made the headlines when an employee posted on Facebook about how the company had gone above and beyond contractual obligation to provide her with the facilities to breastfeed her new baby in comfort and privacy.
 

The feature truly highlighted how important it is to offer support to new mothers at this important stage of parenthood and Tesco has been rightly praised for its efforts. Unfortunately, however, there are just as many cases that show the opposite – from mothers who have been asked to leave restaurants or other public spaces or who have been shamed into thinking that breastfeeding in public is taboo.
 

Of course, breastfeeding is protected by law – from as far back as the Sex Discrimination Act of 1975 which stipulates that breastfeeding mothers should not be harassed or discriminated against in any situation. This has been reinforced more recently in the Equality Act, 2010 which clarifies that a business must not treat any woman who is breastfeeding unfavourably. Indeed, employers must be aware of these stipulations, since they are required, by law, to provide adequate facilities for breastfeeding mothers.
 

Dental professionals must be particularly considerate of this. In many dental surgeries, space is a rare commodity, so ensuring that there is enough room for a breastfeeding mother – either employee or patient – to rest may be more difficult. The allocated space must be comfortable, private and be large enough to allow the individual to lie down.
 

Other than the requirements to regularly risk-assess the working environment, however, there is no legal requirement to conduct a specific separate risk assessment for a breastfeeding individual – but a prudent employer may wish to do so, to best provide an environment which is safe and comfortable.
 

Employers are not required to provide specific areas in which breastfeeding or expressing can take place, nor do they need to provide paid breaks for this purpose. But they must be aware that sometimes the staff room or the waiting room will be inadequate and the toilet facilities are simply inappropriate to breastfeed. Importantly, they must remember that under the Equality Act they cannot provide a service on different terms; meaning you cannot ask a breastfeeding mother to sit somewhere different than your usual waiting room unless there is a safety concern – so it is better overall to make provisions for a comfortable area which meets the specific legislative requirements to avoid any complications or potential dispute.
 

Not only will this be in keeping with current laws, it will be an effective way to show your support for new mothers – and this can be a particularly powerful tool. Whether it’s online or in person, new mothers will certainly discuss different service environments – your dental practice included – and if you are providing a comfortable, caring environment for them and their babies, they will most likely tell their friends about it. As a way of attracting new patients, new mothers may be a positive place to start.
 

In this regard, providing appropriate areas for breastfeeding mothers is simply the start – there is a myriad of other opportunities for you to take to strengthen the relationship between your business and new parents. Providing information can be another powerful way of doing so. For example, did you know that is has been show that breastfeeding a child will significantly reduce the risk of dental caries, malocclusion and fluorosis – it is also suggested that breastfeeding will promote optimal jaw and tooth development.[1]
 

There is also a helpline available in the UK to check the suitability of certain drugs for breastfeeding mothers; Drugs in Breastmilk helpline is contactable through 0844 412 4665 and is an effective way of staying up-to-date on behalf of your patients.
 

Similarly, it is worth making it clear that mothers are exempt from patient charges under the NHS whilst they are pregnant and throughout the first year of their child’s life.
 

Taking these steps is a great way of providing an excellent service to everyone – offering effective information as well as a comfortable, appropriate environment for breastfeeding patients and employees will certainly attract positive comments, just as Tesco enjoyed recently.
 

Goodman Grant Solicitors are the lawyers for dentists in the UK. With nationwide offices and an expert team, they understand the specific issues that dental professionals are beset with on a daily basis. If you need assistance with any of the legal aspects of running a dental business – from how to best cater to breastfeeding mothers to incorporation or employment contracts and tribunals – they can help. As both NASDAL and ASPD members, they know precisely what dental professionals need to run an effective business and will assist in a positive, friendly manner.
 

Do not risk alienating breastfeeding mothers – make sure you take the right steps to ensure you accommodate their needs just as you would any other.

 

Nicola Lomas Goodman Grant Lawyers for Dentists

For more information call Nicola Lomas on 0151 707 0090 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

www.goodmangrant.co.uk
NASDAL and ASPD MEMBERS



[1] LA Leche League GB leaflet: Harry Torney, BDS (QUB), M DENT SC (TCD)

 

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Providing better aftercare - Dr Michael Sultan

Providing better aftercare - Dr Michael Sultan

So: you have taken on a case, diagnosed the patient’s problem, discussed their options and gained their informed consent to proceed. The treatment has gone well and the patient leaves your clinic, a little numb admittedly, but in good spirits. You are satisfied you have done everything you can for them.

 

But there is just one thing missing: aftercare. Or proper aftercare, at least. An unfortunate majority of dental professionals seem to believe that aftercare consists simply of handing a patient an advice leaflet as they head out the door and booking them in for a follow-up appointment.
 

But there has to be more than this. 
 

When I first set up my practice, we made the effort to contact every patient after treatment, just to assess their recovery and assuage any concerns they might have had after returning home. For the most part, the patients appreciated this – they were happy we rang because it showed we cared about their progress. Some, however, were immediately suspicious and thought perhaps we were ringing to tell them about a problem with their treatment. The majority of people were simply surprised we had phoned at all, because no one had ever done it before.
 

This possibly stems from the fact that we have become so invested in the time-honoured maxim that ‘no news is good news.’ Surely, we think, our patients will contact us if there is something wrong.
 

But the fact is, they probably won’t. Whether it’s because they are embarrassed or they think we’re too busy to talk to them, most patients will suffer in silence.
 

This is, of course, a fundamental failing in our role as healthcare providers. We need to care for our patients until they are well again, not just until they walk out our door. Admittedly, trying to call each and every patient can be a time-consuming task, especially for larger practices. It can also be utterly superfluous, if only a handful of patients actually need additional attention.
 

What is needed, therefore, is an overhaul of current aftercare procedure. We need a way of targeting those patients who need our help and reassurance. With modern technology what it is, this surely cannot be difficult to achieve. I imagine apps that can track patients’ post-treatment pain in real time, helping us recognise trends and deliver precise assistance to those who need it most; I can see text services and instant messaging being integrated into dentistry to provide personalised aftercare for all patients.
 

This would surely improve our profession, not just in standards of care, but in reputation – just imagine the positive response your patients will offer when they know that you genuinely care about their progress and wellbeing?       
 

And if that isn’t incentive enough to improve our aftercare, I don’t know what is.

 

For further information please call EndoCare on 020 7224 0999

Or visit www.endocare.co.uk

 

Dr Michael Sultan BDS MSc DFO FICD is a Specialist in Endodontics and the Clinical Director of EndoCare. Michael qualified at Bristol University in 1986. He worked as a general dental practitioner for 5 years before commencing specialist studies at Guy’s hospital, London. He completed his MSc in Endodontics in 1993 and worked as an in-house Endodontist in various practices before setting up in Harley St, London in 2000. He was admitted onto the specialist register in Endodontics in 1999 and has lectured extensively to postgraduate dental groups as well as lecturing on Endodontic courses at Eastman CPD, University of London. He has been involved with numerous dental groups and has been chairman of the Alpha Omega dental fraternity. In 2008 he became clinical director of EndoCare, a group of specialist practices.

 

  3209 Hits
3209 Hits
JAN
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Are you up-to-date with the National Living Wage? - Michael Lansdell

Are you up-to-date with the National Living Wage? - Michael Lansdell

For an employee to feel truly valued, they need to know that they are being paid adequately for the job they do and that their employer is committed to their welfare and wants them to stay. As a dental practice owner, you will probably employ part-time staff – are you sure that you are paying them enough, even if they are not working as many hours as others are?

 

This is essential after the prime minister unveiled changes to the rules around the National Living Wage (NLW) in September 2015. The measures significantly toughened the regulations that were already in place, emphasising a message of ‘zero tolerance’ for employers who fail to comply.

 

Under the new laws, the NLW for workers over the age of 25 will be £7.20 an hour from April 2016 and by 2020, it will be at least £9. To ensure that employers comply with this, the government also announced a new unit at HMRC created specifically to deal with firms that are not paying the NLW.

 

Until the measures were announced, if an employer was caught out, they had to repay the amount they had underpaid plus a non-payment penalty. In September, the prime minister confirmed that this penalty would be doubled to a whopping 200% of the underpayment. Moreover, any business owner found guilty may also be disqualified from being a company director for 15 years.

 

These penalties are harsh and a small-to-medium-sized business, which many dental practices are, would simply not survive them. Whilst some employers are making a genuine mistake, it is still the responsibility of the business owner to make sure the new rules are properly enforced and all criteria met.

 

Don’t get caught out! Part of running a successful dental practice is looking after every member of staff and making it a great place to work. Get expert advice to keep you up-to-date with the law, so that everyone can focus on delivering the very best in patient care.

 

Specialist medical and dental accountants Lansdell & Rose can help you understand and apply employment law. The team also has a wealth of knowledge on a range of topics from pensions to tax to help your business grow. Visit www.lansdellrose.co.uk or call 020 7376 9333.

 

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3042 Hits
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Learn to lead

Learn to lead

Patients have more choice than ever. They want excellent dental care and impeccable customer service from the minute they step inside the surgery. For a practice to survive, it must be well-run, with a clear vision that an inspired team works together to achieve.

 

A great practice therefore needs great leadership. There are different ways you can lead people and even if you don’t think these skills come naturally to you, there are simple ways to develop them.
 

Decide what style of leadership is best in your circumstances. It is just as important that a small-to-medium sized practice is as properly run as a larger one, because losing a patient or employee will have a more noticeable impact on revenue. You won’t achieve anything without a plan and having shared vision, which is decided on and supported by everyone, is the first step to becoming a good leader. Recognise that your plans may change as your circumstances do, but be consistent in your long-term goals, so your integrity is not questioned.
 

A good leader will reward the contributions and achievements of the team that supports them; if you can’t do this financially, then share details of good work so people feel valued and appreciated. Real investment in the people that work with you – both professionally and personally - will create a happy, enthusiastic team and reduce staff turnover too.
 

Recruitment decisions that will enrich your practice and complement the team that you already have in post are crucial to your success. The support of your team will help you to make good decisions, including which tasks to delegate. Because you can’t do everything, especially with a full clinical schedule, empower those around you by giving them to the chance to learn and grow. Offer ongoing training and professional development opportunities for those who have voiced their desire to take on more responsibility and evolve their job description.
 

Think about enriching your team and growing your own talent with the new Trailblazers apprenticeship schemes. These programmes are supported by the government but lead by employers, including Mustafa Mohammed, Managing Director of Genix Healthcare and Sparkle Dental Labs, who is dedicated to improving standards and increasing the skills base of the nation. Currently, there are apprentice schemes available for dental practice managers and dental nurses and training individuals in this way has been found to be rewarding and cost-effective.[i] Taking on an apprentice is a fantastic way to tap into aptitude and potential and to create a committed, accomplished and loyal workforce.
 

Although there are different ways to lead, the ability to motivate, inspire and transform are qualities that every good leader needs. Most importantly, having a vision, the integrity to stick with your long-term plan and a team that will help you to fulfill it, is what will set your practice apart from the rest.
 


Follow Mustafa on Twitter @Mustafa_T_M or Facebook www.facebook.com/MustafaMohammed0

For additional information from the National Apprenticeship Service, please visit www.apprenticeship.org.uk.

For any additional information please call 0800 138 6255 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit: www.sparkledentallabs.com

 



[i] UK Commission’s Employer Skills Survey (UKCESS) 2012.

 

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Health and Financial Costs of Antibiotic Resistance

Health and Financial Costs of Antibiotic Resistance

In May 2015, the World Health Assembly endorsed a global action plan to tackle antimicrobial resistance, including antibiotic resistance, the most urgent drug resistant trend.

 

The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines antibiotic resistance as “resistance of a microorganism to an antimicrobial drug that was originally effective for treatment of infections caused by it.1” They go on further to say it is a “natural phenomenon” and that the misuse and overuse of the medication accelerates this worldwide problem. The effect of this “ticking time bomb” is felt across the health of the global population and worldwide healthcare budgets.

 

The meeting in May created five strategic objectives to tackle the issue including increasing awareness and understanding, reducing the incidence of infection and developing the economic case for sustainable investment2. A survey carried out by the WHO a month earlier found that of 133 participating countries, only 34 had a comprehensive national plan to fight resistance to antibiotics. It discussed how management of the situation was paramount but due to inadequate laboratory capacity, infrastructure and data management practice, trends and outbreaks were poorly detected and monitored. Importantly, many countries had no stringent guidelines on the prescription of antibiotics, which could result in overuse and misuse by prescribers.

 

Excess Expenditure

There is not only the effect this issue has on the health of the global population, but also the impact it has on a country’s economy. Drug-resistant infections could kill an extra 10 million people across the world every year by 2050 if they are not treated successfully. By this date they could also cost the world around $100 trillion in lost output2. Health expenditure in most countries is rising steeply already and resistance to antibiotics is going to contribute significantly in the near future. Excess costs associated with the resistance are due to longer hospitalisation, delayed therapy, higher morbidity rates, the necessity for surgery and the need to use more expensive antibiotics3.

 

Jim O’Neill, an economist leading a review into antimicrobial resistance for the UK government, estimated that $37 billion is needed over the next 10 years to spur the pharmaceutical industry into developing innovations in this troublesome segment. He went on further to say that this was a “modest sum” compared to the cost of not doing anything. During the 1990’s, pharmaceutical companies withdrew from investing in this kind of research due to a high uncertainty around what the final market potential would be, and still the pipeline does not look particularly robust. Also, antibiotics work so fast and so well that they provide relatively weak returns for high investment. Companies prefer to channel their funds towards the treatment of chronic illnesses, such as diabetes, as drug treatment for this type of disease will be taken for longer periods of time; usually for the rest of the patient’s life.

 

Prevention Strategies

This naturally occurring threat is not going to be eradicated without preventative measures being implemented globally. In one research paper on the subject, Sipahi suggests that the following strategies should be followed:

-       Optimal use of existing antimicrobial agents

-       Where possible, use alternative therapies

-       Increase immunity

-       Educate healthcare professionals

-       Regulations and policies

-       Stringent infection control protocols3.

 

There are scientists working to develop new drugs able to combat bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. One of the more recent discoveries reported in The Guardian earlier this year has been hailed as a “game changer” and is called teixobactin. It can kill a wide range of bacteria, including Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). Teixobactin works by blocking the capacity of resistant bacteria to build cell walls, therefore making it almost impossible for bacteria to develop resistance4. It is, of course, still early days.

 

Alternatives to Antibiotics

The alternative is to use drugs and therapies that do not contain antibiotics, yet are as effective in the results that they deliver. PerioChip® is a non-antibiotic solution and can therefore be used in the longer term. It is designed for use in conjunction with traditional treatment to suppress bacterial flora in periodontal pockets of 5mm or more. It contains 2.5 mg of Chlorhexidine Digluconate and is recommended for first line treatment of periodontal pocketing. Results from clinical studies show a pocket reduction of more than 2mm in almost three quarters of patients when placed every three months5.

 

Antibiotic resistance is a looming problem that all governments and healthcare professionals around the world need to take responsibility for. With alternatives to antibiotics available that can be used in dental treatment plans, dental practitioners need to carefully consider what they prescribe and ensure they are doing what they can.

 

To order PerioChip® or for further information Freephone 0800 013 2333 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

Summary of product link;

http://www.old.health.gov.il/units/pharmacy/trufot/alonim/PerioChip_dr_1337488974840.pdf

 

Abbreviated Prescribing Information

PerioChip® 2.5mg Dental Insert (Chlorhexidine digluconate)

For full prescribing information, including side effects, precautions and contraindications, see Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC).

Presentation: Dental insert: bullet shaped orange brown containing Chlorhexidine digluconate 2.5mg.

Indications: PerioChip® is an adjunctive antimicrobial treatment for moderate to severe chronic periodontal disease in adults with pocketing, combined with Root Surface Debridement (RSD). Not indicated in children and adolescents.

Dosage and Administration: One PerioChip® is inserted into a periodontal pocket with a probing pocket depth of ?5mm. Retreatment with PerioChip® following mechanical plaque removal at 3 month intervals may provide additional benefit if pocket depth remains ?5mm. For details see SmPC. Removal is unnecessary as PerioChip® biodegrades.

Contraindications: Hypersensitivity to Chlorhexidine digluconate or excipients.

Precautions: Allergic reactions have occurred but are rare.

Interactions: Avoid nystatin: antagonistic of Chlorhexidine. Chlorhexidine is incompatible with anionic agents present in some toothpastes and with dietary sucrose, but there is no significant impact on the efficacy of PerioChip®.

Undesirable effects: During the first few days after insertion, transient pain or discomfort of gums or teeth; redness and/or swelling of the gums.

Overdose: Not reported

Pregnancy/ Lactation: Controlled studies in pregnant women have not been conducted, so weigh expected benefits against possible foetal risks: caution in nursing mothers (see SmPC).

NHS list price: £207.20

Legal category: P, Product Licence Number: PL 14017/0035

MA holder: Full prescribing information is available on request from Dexcel Pharma Ltd, 7 Sopwith Way, Drayton Fields Industrial Estate, Daventry, Northants, NN11 8PB.

Adverse events should be reported. Reporting forms and information can be found at www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard.

Adverse events should also be reported to:

Dexcel Pharma Ltd on 01748 828784

 

1. Fact Sheet No194, WHO

2. http://amr-review.org

3. Sipahi OR. Economics of antibiotic resistance. Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther. 2008 Aug;6(4):523-39. doi: 10.1586/14787210.6.4.523.

4. The Guardian, 7th January 2015

5. Soslkolne W.A et al. Probing depth changes following 2 years of periodontal maintenance therapy including adjunctive controlled-release of chlorhexidine. JOP 2003;74:420-427

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4201 Hits
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When traffic is a good thing - Tim Caudrelier

When traffic is a good thing - Tim Caudrelier

Gone are the days when a website that simply listed your products or services was adequate. Now, with rapidly developing technology, digital advertising and social media you can create an online interactive presence to connect with your existing patients, while also attracting new people to your practice. But what is the best way to boost traffic to your website and convert leads into customers?
 

Until recently, patient use of the internet involved the major search engines, such as Google, Yahoo and Bing. However, now Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have become search engines in their own right[1]. Competition for website surfers looking for information has therefore increased and consumers now have choices they did not have a few years ago. As the online arena becomes more flooded with commerce, buyers have the desire and ability to become familiar with a brand before they purchase. This is changing online buying behaviour and people are opting for two, three or four lead magnets before buying.
 

Traffic platforms are also changing and becoming overcrowded. Take Facebook as an example – previously you could send Facebook traffic to a squeeze page with just a headline and an opt in box, but now it is becoming increasingly strict with what kind of landing pages it allows traffic to be directed to.
 

This crowding of traffic has also caused people to become highly adept at ignoring advertising in all its forms – TV commercials are skipped and emails from unknown senders are left unopened. So although there are various options available to buy advertising, this alone is no longer an effective option for driving traffic to your website. Instead you have to earn traffic by creating valuable content that attracts visitors. Through the development of informative content, you can encourage leads to your site. Reports or webinars, for example, on the latest treatments and oral healthcare advice will engage patients and create interest. More importantly, this information will also allow you to develop a trusted relationship with individuals.
 

Building your content library one piece at a time is an ideal way to start, as this will ensure you have new and interesting topics for patients and potential patients to read and engage with regularly. These could include blog posts, videos, case studies, reports and webinars, and before you know it, you will have a substantial source of work that will help raise the profile of your practice and generate new leads.
 

Having a well-thought-out marketing system in place, such as AIM – Automated Intelligent Marketing – will then allow you to target the information to the correct patients successfully. Developed by 7connections, AIM utilises the lifecycle marketing concept to effectively target communication and create smarter lead management, resulting in enhanced lead conversion rates, increased sales and greater profits.
 

There are many ways to enhance traffic to your website, however just investing time and money on advertising without a clear and structured plan will result in a number of missed opportunities. Developing quality content and then marketing it through an effective proven system will ensure leads are created and converted and patients retained.

 

For more information about 7connections, please call 01647 478145 or email pThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Alternatively, please visit the new website www.7connections.com.

 



[1] Romano, R., & Baum, N. (2015). The business side of developing a social media presence into your medical practice. The Complete Business Guide for a Successful Medial Practice, 239-248. Available online: http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-11095-0_20 [Accessed 20th August 2015].

 

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Trust in Munroe Sutton - Jeremy Hedrick

Trust in Munroe Sutton - Jeremy Hedrick

Good news for the dental profession: patients in the UK trust their dentists more than their GPs.[1] Trust is an important element of a strong patient–practitioner relationship; it can help patients relax during treatment, making it easier for dentists to complete essential work. It also increases compliance with treatment, improves patient satisfaction and will mean patients are more likely to follow advice.

 

Thus, a good patient–practitioner relationship can act as a strong foundation for better oral health and, since good oral health has been linked with good general health, trust between a patient and their dentist can improve a patient’s overall wellbeing.

 

As a dentist, you can build a trusting relationship with your patient in a number of ways. Explaining treatments thoroughly, using visual aids and photos or digital images to show patients what is wrong and how you intend to treat them, letting patients feel in control, assuaging any phobias – these techniques can all promote trust. But these days, one of the most important factors is reassuring patients that they are receiving good value for money from your service.

 

While we can all be thankful that the UK economy is recovering, that does not mean patients are willing to spend money on subpar dental treatment. Indeed, many people view dentistry as having a big price tag. Reports suggest that the UK does have the most expensive dentists in Europe[2] – so the profession needs to show patients that they are getting proper value for money.

 

One way of helping with this is to offer payment through dental plans. The most recent statistics available suggest that 12% of the UK’s population already invests in dental insurance, but this figure is likely to increase in the near future.[3]

 

Dental plans can truly benefit patients by offering them the treatment they want and need for less. By being involved with such plans, dentists can maintain their bond with patients – strengthen it even – while taking advantage of the benefits themselves.  

 

Munroe Sutton has more than 30 years’ experience of designing, organising and managing dental plans that improve the affordability of quality dental treatment. Designed by dentists for dentists, the Healthy Discounts Plan offers exceptional deals to patients while providing dentists with fair compensation for their services. Associated practices benefit from free marketing, increased promotion and higher patient uptake – at no charge to themselves – while patients get the treatment they want for less.    

 

Building a strong patient–practitioner relationship is crucial to any healthcare provider, especially dentists. With your patients’ trust, you can ensure good standards of oral and general health. By being part of Munroe Sutton’s prodigious network you can offer more value-for-money to your patients, making them more likely to keep using your service – with no charge to yourself.

 

Contact the friendly team today to discuss your options.

 

For more information please call 0808 234 3558 or visit www.munroesutton.co.uk

 



[1] British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF) – News: More trust in dentists than doctors; published online: 01/09/12; link: http://www.dentalhealth.org/news/details/640 [accessed 23/07/15]

[2] The Telegraph – Personal Finance: Feeling ripped off by dental treatment? This how to fight back; published online, 17/03/15; link: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/money-saving-tips/11474741/Feeling-ripped-of-by-dental-treatment-This-is-how-to-fight-back.html [accessed 23/07/15]

[3] British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF) – National Smile Month: Facts and Figures; link: http://www.nationalsmilemonth.org/facts-figures/ [accessed 23/07/15]

 

  3520 Hits
3520 Hits
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9 ways GDPUK can help you in 2016.

9 ways GDPUK can help you in 2016.

 

How can we help you?

 

First week back in the office has flown by and like everyone else involved in the world of sales, we have all been working hard on following up leads, arranging meetings and even closing some deals! (always be closing)

There has been a recurring theme this week in my small dental related bubble and that is clients or prospects asking how we can help them in 2016?

We see GDPUK as an integral part of a dental companies opportunity to market themselves to dentists in the UK. We believe we have a large, active and engaged audience on the site, which we are very proud of. This is important because dental professionals in the UK are using social media more than ever and GDPUK is at the centre of that. For example many of the signatures for the letter published in the Daily Telegraph came from GDPUK. NHS unfit for purpose.

So we have put together a short list of the ways in which we can help our clients engage with potential customers.

 

  1. Banner Ads - We offer a range of banner ads on the site and our daily digest emails. Further info can be found in our media pack here

  2. Product Spotlights - New for 2016, the product spotlight will appear on the frontpage of the site, with a promotion of your new service / product or special offer.

  3. Product / Service Launches - We can help launch a new product into the market, with blogs, news articles and banner ads.

  4. Special Offers - Entice new or old customers with a special offer / or sample offer

  5. Case Studies - We can publish case studies for you of products that are working for patients in dental practices. A case study can be a great way of demonstrating how your product works and how it will help the dentist improve his or her skills.

  6. Forum Reviews / Tests - Put your product to the test, use members of the GDPUK forum to test your product and receive honest reviews that can be shared on the forum and published as a blog post.

  7. Surveys - Run a survey, which can be hosted by our site or your site. Use it to do product research etc

  8. Social Media Competitions - Combining promotion on GDPUK and other social media channels, we can run a competition that helps collect data and potential new users of your product.

  9. Promotion of Courses / Events - There are a large number of events, meetings, courses that are scheduled in the UK dental calendar on an annual basis, we can help with promotion and even the sale of the tickets.


We hope everyone out there has also had an insightful start to the year and like ourselves are always thinking about how they can improve what they offer to their customers. If you would like to try any other marketing ideas on our site, we are always interested in new methods and always looking to learn. Look forward to hearing from you soon.

Thanks for reading. 

 

Our latest media pack can be found by clicking on this link

Look at some of our amazing numbers that GDPUK produces - GDPUK in Numbers

 

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4976 Hits
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The Telegraph

The Daily Telegraph

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10268 Hits
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Denplan’s Excel programme becomes first dental service to be awarded UKAS accreditation

Denplan’s Excel programme becomes first dental service to be awarded UKAS accreditation

Denplan’s Excel programme, an advanced quality assurance programme, developed for dentists to help support clinical governance, professional regulation and excellence in patient care and communication has been formally assessed and accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS). UKAS accreditation of the Excel programme is ground-breaking because it is the first dental service world-wide to achieve such recognition.

UKAS are the sole national accreditation body recognised by government to assess organisations that provide certification, testing and inspection services against internationally agreed standards. UKAS accredit over 3,000 organisations worldwide throughout industry, business and commerce for this purpose.  Accreditation by UKAS demonstrates an organisation’s competence, impartiality, capability and helps underpin the credibility of performance, goods and services. The accreditation of Denplan’s Excel programme will ensure that patients continue to receive high standards and quality of care in dentistry, which is supportive of current NHS and overall government healthcare objectives.

Henry Clover, Deputy Chief Dental Officer at Denplan, responsible for leading Denplan through the accreditation process commented:  “We are thrilled that fifteen years after the launch of the Excel programme, heralding the arrival of a unique quality assurance programme in UK dentistry, it has now been granted UKAS accreditation.  This is the culmination of an enormous amount of work to demonstrate that all aspects of the Excel programme conform to the ISO 17065 standard for bodies certifying products, processes and services.

“UKAS accreditation of the Denplan Excel programme is recognition that Denplan has the necessary competence, combined with robust procedures and operations in place to assess the wide range of clinical, governance, legal and regulatory tasks that dental practices have to perform. This will continue to ensure that high standards in patient care and communication are met by Denplan’s Excel dentists. 

“We believe that this accolade will also place all Excel dentists in a favourable position, as the GDC (General Dental Council) moves towards introducing a revalidation scheme (now known as ‘continuing assurance’) and regulators like the CQC also recognising the potential value of clinical service accreditation and peer review schemes as information sources to support its inspections*.”

Paul Stennett, Chief Executive of UKAS commented: “Congratulations to everyone at Denplan on becoming the world’s first dental service to achieve UKAS accreditation.  Confidence in the quality of a number of diverse health and social care services is already underpinned by UKAS accreditation, from imaging services and medical laboratories, to physiological services and care home inspections.  Accreditation of the Denplan Excel programme represents a natural extension of that confidence into the dental care sector, providing assurance to commissioners, providers and patients alike.”

Accreditation will be monitored through annual surveillance visits, with a full re-assessment every four years. Denplan Excel dentists will now be allowed to use the UKAS symbol alongside the Excel logo and Denplan will be supplying practices with a new Excel plaque free of charge.

Excel dentists also gain free access to Denplan’s market-leading patient communication and assessment tool, DEPPA. This is an evidence-based assessment which allows dentists to produce a colour coded report to present to patients which can help aid understanding and communication regarding their oral health and future risk of dental caries, periodontal disease, tooth wear and oral cancer. Further information about Denplan Excel and DEPPA can be found at www.denplan.co.uk/excel

 

 

 

*Source: http://www.ukas.com/news/cqc-recognition-of-ukas-healthcare-accreditation-schemes/

 

About Denplan

 

Denplan Limited is the UK’s leading dental payment plan specialist owned by Simplyhealth; with more than 6,500 member dentists nationwide caring for approximately 1.7 million Denplan registered patients. Established in 1986 by two dentists who pioneered the concept of dental payment plans, Denplan has been at the heart of dental care for nearly 30 years. Today, Denplan has a wide range of dental plans for adults and children, enabling patients to spread the cost of their private dental care through a fixed monthly fee. Denplan supports regular attendance and preventive care, reducing the need for clinical intervention and helping patients to maintain healthy teeth and gums for life. Patient enquiries telephone: 0800 401 402   Dentist enquiries telephone: 0800 328 3223

www.denplan.co.uk

 

  • Denplan Care: all routine and restorative care + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover
  • Denplan Essentials: routine care only + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover
  • Plans for Children: routine and other agreed care + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover
  • Membership Plan: registered with the dentist + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover
  • Denplan Emergency: worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover only
  • Corporate Dental Plans: company funded, voluntary and flexible benefit schemes

 

Denplan also provides a range of professional services for its member dentists and their practice teams, including the Denplan Quality Programme, Denplan Excel Certification Programme and Denplan Training.  Plus regulatory advice, business and marketing consultancy services and networking opportunities.

 

For more information about Denplan:

Rebecca Hutton

Denplan Press Office

Tel: 01962 829 179

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

About Simplyhealth

 

We have been helping people with their health for over 140 years. Our roots are in the hospital funds set up during the Victorian era to help working people save for their medical care, and we still follow mutual values today. With no shareholders, our profits go back into supporting our customers and healthcare charitable causes, donating over £1 million each year. Last year, we donated £1.4 million.

 

In 2011, we acquired Denplan Limited, the UK’s leading dental payment plan specialist. Simplyhealth has 1,391 employees based across our offices in Andover, Manchester, Leeds and Denplan in Winchester. We serve our 3.5 million customers through cash plans, dental plans, Denplan and pet health plans. Simplyhealth has Independent Living Centres which provide daily living and mobility products, including powerchairs, mobility scooters and wheelchairs, in Andover, Bristol, Burnham, Droitwich, Kenilworth, Leeds, Northfield, Norwich, Sutton Coldfield, Telford, Willenhall and Wolverhampton.

 

Simplyhealth is a trading name of Simplyhealth Access, which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

 

For further information:

 

http://newsroom.simplyhealth.co.uk/

 

Caroline Newton, Public Relations and Social Media Manager 0344 579 2274

Laura Miller, Media Relations Officer 0344 579 2266

Or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Follow us on Twitter @SimplyhealthUK and at Facebook.com/SimplyhealthUK

 

About UKAS

The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is the National Accreditation Body (NAB) for the UK.  Its role is to assess evaluating organisations to international standards.  UKAS operates under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).  UKAS accreditation involves assessment of certification, inspection, testing and calibration services.  For further information about UKAS visit: www.ukas.com.

All media enquiries should be directed to Phil Russell in the UKAS press office: E: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. T: 020 7689 5155

  7090 Hits
7090 Hits
JAN
11
0

Back by Popular Demand! Safe4 Returns to Dentistry

Back by Popular Demand! Safe4 Returns to Dentistry

Allan Stockwin, Chairman of Safe4 and ex-Chairman of the Dental Buying Group (DBG), announces a return to the dental market.

 

When I sold the DBG and The Dental Supply House in 2010, I decided to retain control of Safe4, one of the most ethical ranges of products available in the UK.

The company has always maintained its primary principle of delivering safe products that protect both the end user and the environment. It's been a big educational exercise but we have managed to spread the word in many markets and deal directly with the majority of customers who care about their patients and the environment.

Our next endeavor is to return to the dental profession, which up until now has always purchased through dental wholesale companies. Understandably, many of these companies have few loyalties to brands and little understanding of the products they sell and the substances contained within them. They simply stock and sell the solutions in most demand, or those that generate the largest profit. Some even sell Safe4 and many dentists used it when The Dental Supply House was still operating.

By offering our products directly to you, we strive to really get to know you and therefore deliver a more personalised service tailored to the type of business you run and the demands you face. In addition to providing full data sheets, we can explain them to you as well, answering any questions you may have there and then.

We believe we have managed, through our educational programme, to dramatically reduce the number of hazardous products sold in the UK and abroad. However, we still have a long way to go and it would be nice to think we can be as successful in the dental market as we have been in many other markets.

We have been very mindful to remain abreast of the very latest advancements and changes to the regulations surrounding cleaning and disinfectant products and protocols in the healthcare and veterinary sectors. As such, we have been, and continue to be, not only well placed to offer clarification and advice on these topics, but also very happy to do so as part of the service we provide. We are here to help you ensure the highest standards of safety within your practice and we are proud to offer you such highly effective, easy-to-use and safe disinfection products.

Worldwide Endorsement

When you look at the list of internationally leading names using Safe4 products, it can't be a coincidence that they have chosen the best to protect their staff and clients. In the animal care sector, for example, we are proud to work with key global organisations, zoos and sanctuaries such as Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Blue Cross, London Zoo, Twycross Zoo, Chester Zoo, PDSA and Universal Studios, as well as SeaLife in 10 different countries around the world.

Effective

Safe4 products have been clinically proven to be effective against a wide range of harmful pathogens including viruses, bacterium and fungi. These include candida albians, E.coli, hepatitis C, HIV, listeria, MRSA, salmonella, staphyloccus aureus, swine flu and trchophyton,[i] preventing the spread of infection throughout your dental practice.

Safe 

Alcohol-free, non-toxic and non-irritant, our products contain no harsh chemicals that are harmful to the natural world or humans, delivering the ultimate protection for your patients, your staff and the environment.

In fact, our solutions are so safe that you needn’t worry about rinsing or drying them once they have been used on surfaces – they pose absolutely no risk to anyone or anything that may come into contact with the product while it’s still wet. Perfect for rapid yet effective decontamination processes between patient appointments, while also eliminating any health concerns in the case of product accident or spillage, you can have complete confidence in the safety of both your staff and your patients.

Non-corrosive and non-staining, our products are also safe for use on a wide variety of surface materials, as they won’t damage your worktops or equipment.

The Products

We are excited to launch three core products especially for dental professionals:

  • Disinfectant Cleaner – available in 900 ml and 5 litre containers, as well as a trigger spray and wipes
  • Instrument Cleaner – available in 1 litre and 5 litre containers
  • Safe4 Nitrile Gloves – available in sizes small, medium and large

 

Designed specifically for the dental environment to help you maintain outstanding hygiene levels in a cost-effective and efficient way, discover the clinical proven product range from Safe4 today!

 

 

For more information visit www.safe4disinfectant.com,

call 01606 591900 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Quote Reference: Safe4-2



[i] Safe4. Tired, tested and approved. Link http://www.safe4-be.com/files/Safe4_Test_Results.pdf [Accessed December 2015]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  3658 Hits
3658 Hits
JAN
11
0

GDC hearing – Counterfeit dental devices

GDC hearing – Counterfeit dental devices
The GDC has published details of a Fitness To Practice (FTP) hearing concerning the deliberate use of counterfeit dental devices to be held on 18 January 2016.
 
Through its award winning CSIDI campaign the BDIA has been working hard to raise the awareness of the dangers of counterfeit and non-compliant dental devices with its hard hitting press campaign over the last eighteen months. Acting hand in hand with the dental press the Association has repeatedly warned of the potential dangers to patients and to a professional’s registration that could result from the use of counterfeit and non-compliant dental devices.
 
Tony Reed, BDIA Executive Director, comments, “The forthcoming GDC hearing highlights the serious consequences of using counterfeit dental devices. It also raises concerns for those dentists who may have purchased from unreliable sources and reinforces the importance of purchasing from reputable suppliers.”
 
The BDIA continues to work closely with the profession and MHRA on its CSIDI activity.  The overall message of the initiative is very simple; substandard and counterfeit instruments and devices are potentially dangerous to patients and users and the BDIA recommends that all purchases, however small, are made from a reputable supplier and that all suspect instruments, devices and whitening products are reported to the appropriate authorities at the earliest opportunity. All reporting can be done via a simple, dedicated web page on the BDIA website at www.bdia.org.uk

 

Details of the forthcoming GDC hearing are available at:

https://www.gdc-uk.org/Membersofpublic/Hearings/Charges%202015/TAHIR%2018-22%20Jan%202016%20Smithfield%204%20(FINAL).pdf

 

Further details of the BDIA’s CSIDI activity can be found at:

http://www.bdia.org.uk/device-reporting.html

 

The British Dental Industry Association (BDIA) is a non-profit making organisation which means that any surplus funds generated from its activities are ploughed back into dentistry either directly or by supporting and working with other professional dental bodies.

For more information please contact Edmund Proffitt on 01494 781183 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

  9056 Hits
9056 Hits
JAN
08
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New Launch by Market-Leading Manufacturer

New Launch by Market-Leading Manufacturer

As a market-leading manufacturer and distributor of quality single-use gloves across Europe, Unigloves has more than 13 years’ experience in the UK dental industry.

The company has just launched its latest range of gloves – Vitality – including:

  • Vitality Nitrile – white, powder-free with Lano-E coating
  • Vitality Latex – white, powder-free with Lano-E coating
  • Vitality Latex scented – green, powder-free with Lano-E coating and scented with a pleasant citrus and peppermint flavour for your patient’s comfort

The lanolin and vitamin E (Lano-E) coating is designed to reduce skin irritation and dehydration. This is supported by the multiple wash cycle which makes the gloves cleaner and safer by reducing residual water-soluble proteins and other harmful chemicals, thereby minimising allergy risks.

The double-chlorinated beaded cuffs facilitate easy donning and removal of gloves whilst the micro-roughened texture ensures optimal grip. This unique combination of features makes the Vitality range of gloves ideal for use within the dental industry.   

 

 

For further information about Unigloves products, please visit www.unigloves.co.uk or call  01634 726516 

  3161 Hits
3161 Hits
JAN
07
0

A model lunch and learn

A model lunch and learn

Vacuum forming is a dental technique that many a dental team has found invaluable once brought into the practice, and Prestige Dental makes that journey as simple and as pleasant as you could possibly want with its lunch and learn gatherings.

Led by Jennifer Ball, a product specialist for Prestige, this is an event not to be missed! As an ex-dental nurse with plenty of experience, Jennifer knows exactly what it’s like to work in a busy team whose members strive to excel in everything they do. 

While lunch is enjoyed, Jennifer introduces the team to the day’s topic, during which she shows them how to cast up a study model. Then, while that is setting she shows a previously fabricated study model and explains how to use the vacuum forming machine to make a whitening tray. By then, the original study model is set and it’s time for everyone to gain some hands-on experience. Normally one or two members of the team cast up models while others try making a whitening tray.

Speaking about these fun meetings, Jennifer commented: ‘Obviously some introductory information is essential but the real learning happens during the hands-on sessions. I believe that is the best possible way to understand how vacuum forming works, and the feedback I’ve received confirms that.

‘It offers the opportunity for me to teach everyone attending how to overcome issues that could arise – for example, a broken model and a patient waiting, an air bubble in the study model, or how to shape the study model so that it creates a tighter whitening tray.

‘Also very important is that I communicate the legal aspect of this type of work. For example, every dentist, nurse or hygienist can make a whitening tray as long as it is within their scope of practice, but if you want to make retainers you need to register the practice with the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency for a small cost.

‘I know it’s a lot of to take in, so I also provide documents that support the information I’ve shared.’

 

If you would like to know more about this event or would like to book a lunch and learn at your practice, please call Jennifer on 07341 127608 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Alternatively, you can ring Prestige Dental’s head office on 01274 721567.

  3621 Hits
3621 Hits
JAN
07
0

Exciting new qualification in dental practice management

Exciting new qualification in dental practice management

 

The benefits afforded by apprenticeship schemes are clear. The Apprenticeship for Dental Practice Managers is the latest to be rolled out in dentistry and we at Dentabyte were excited to recently commence our first course with Barnet and Southgate College, London. Next year, we look forward to offering courses with the University of Bolton too.

For delegates on this scheme, there is a unique opportunity to learn the craft of dental practice management on a practical level. Mentored by highly experienced professionals during classroom-based workshops and tutor support throughout two years, they also gain invaluable experience from working in a modern practice environment. What’s more, a Level 4 ILM certificate in Management and Leadership is gained within the first 6 months, standing apprentices in excellent stead for more advanced management qualifications in the future.

From the employer’s perspective, they can develop their existing team or introduce fresh staff members, confident in the knowledge that they will learn all the skills they need to perform the role competently and efficiently. By developing the talent of tomorrow, employers are also investing in the future of their business and ensuring a highly skilled workforce to continue driving the profession forward.

Course content

The apprenticeship programme is designed specifically to equip delegates with the knowledge, skills, behaviours and practical workplace experience they need to manage a modern dental practice effectively. A wide range of topics is covered including human resources, patient care, clinical excellence, marketing, risk management, quality assurance, finance and trends within the dental industry. Key skills such as those needed for strong leadership, management and communication are emphasised in all relevant areas and frequent reflection, reviews and assessments will ensure delegates are progressing successfully. As such, apprentices will develop a meaningful understanding of how to run and manage a dental business effectively, ethically and passionately.

Funding

The government has pledged to heavily subsidise apprenticeship programmes in order to facilitate delivery. For every £1 the employer invests, the government will therefore contribute £2. The cap on this core funding is set at £6,000  – available if the employer invests £3,000 – but additional incentives are on offer as well. For example, practices with fewer than 50 members of staff who enrol an apprentice aged over 18 in our programme will pay £2,700 and this will be matched by £5,400. They are entitled to a small business rebate of£900, which is paid three months into an apprenticeship course. Upon successful completion, a further £900 is also available. Therefore, including core funding of £5,400, incentive government funding of £1,800 and the employers’ own investment of £2,700, practices have a total investment of £9,900 for each apprentice aged over 18. The net employer outlay for a successful candidate is, however, just £900.

 

 

 

How does it work?

Usually, apprentices are required to have attained a grade C or above in English and Maths at GSCE level, with most holding an A-Level or equivalent qualification, although previous relevant experience may also be considered.

To establish an apprenticeship programme, employers need to ensure they have the correct structure in place for delivery of the work portfolio and funding. The employer will need to organise monthly learning reviews with the apprentice.

A Lead Provider must be chosen in the first instance, such as Barnet and Southgate College, who is allocated the government funds for the course. They become responsible for managing payments to the employer and for the subcontract of programmes to Dentabyte, the educational provider who delivers the classroom based content of the course.

Get involved

Effective management is an integral aspect of the modern dental practice and this apprenticeship scheme offers exciting new opportunities for staff and employers alike. Is it time you got involved in the transformation of dental practice management?

 

 

For more information on the structure of the Apprenticeship in Dental Practice Management, please contact Barnet and Southgate College:

 

www.barnetsouthgate.ac.uk

020 8266 4000 email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

www.facebook.com/barnetsouthgate

twitter @barnetsouthgate

 

 

For more information on content and assessment, please contact me on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  4998 Hits
4998 Hits
JAN
04
0

Satisfied Sale

Satisfied Sale

“Having previously attempted to sell with another agent, I made the decision to advertise through Dental Elite,” says Patricia Webley who recently sold her practice.

“Within a very short time of the advert going live, I had two interested parties – one of whom viewed the practice and offered the full asking price within days.

“All in all the process took eight months to achieve completion and I am very happy with the services provided by Dental Elite.

“As my point of contact throughout the negotiations, Leah Turner ensured that all the necessary administrative requirements proceeded smoothly.

“What’s more, she liaised between both parties to make sure agreement on all issues were swiftly resolved.

“She also recommended a dental-specific solicitor who proved to be very helpful.

“I would be very happy to recommend Leah Turner and Dental Elite to anybody wishing to buy or sell a practice.”

To find out how Dental Elite can help you sell your practice, contact the team today.

 

 

For more information and to find out how Dental Elite can value
and assist your practice sale visit www.dentalelite.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 01788 545 900

  3820 Hits
3820 Hits
JAN
03
0

One for the diary - The Dentistry Show 2016

One for the diary - The Dentistry Show 2016

For dental professionals seeking a fun, dynamic and world-class platform for learning, networking and discovering the very latest innovations, The Dentistry Show 2016 is a must-attend event. More than 7,000 delegates are expected to return, with access to nationally and internationally leading speakers, as well as over 400 top dental manufacturers and suppliers.

 

Regardless of whether you work as a dentist, dental nurse, hygienist, therapist or practice manager, the show will present a myriad of opportunities for you. Exciting two-day lecture programmes will be tailored specifically to each area of the profession, offering hours of verifiable and general CPD. Globally renowned speakers will include Didier Dietschi and Louis Mackenzie in the Aesthetic Dentist Theatre, with many more yet to be announced.
 

The Dental Nurses Forum in partnership with the British Association of Dental Nursing (BADN) is sure to prove a highlight of the event for dental nurses with the entire programme designed and presented by the BADN. Leading names will explore a dynamic range of topics, sharing their experience and expertise to help you develop your skills and boost your career progression.
 

For additional CPD sessions suitable for all members of the dental team, the CORE CPD Theatre will cover core subjects such as medical emergencies, radiation protection and infection control. The Dental Business Conference, designed in conjunction with Practice Plan for 2016, will then offer practice owners and managers a wealth of information and advice to help enhance their business principles while optimising profitability.
 

And for those who specialise in certain fields, or who are interested in expanding their treatment provision, lecture theatres on the trade floor will cater to your needs. These will include:

 

  • EndoLounge – from basic to the most advanced procedures, explore a variety of case studies, materials and clinical techniques with the experts.
  • PerioLounge – the ever-popular theatre will return once again to provide an update in all things periodontal.
  • Short-Term-Orthodontics Lounge – discover the wide range of appliances available today, while refreshing and developing your understanding of the key concepts of GDP orthodontics.
  • Facial Aesthetics Theatre, in association with CCR Expo – as demand for facial aesthetic treatments continues to grow, this programme will ensure you remain at the cutting-edge in order to maximise your business potential.
  • Compliance Clinic – run in association with Apolline, the Clinic will help you better understand the rapidly evolving regulations, with solutions to help tackle the challenges presented.
  • Hands-on workshops – hone your practical skills with professionals at the forefront of their respective fields.
     

Aside from all this, the Dental Update Study Day will also be held at The Dentistry Show 2016, for the second year in a row. Available to all subscribers free of charge, with the chance for non-subscribers to join, the eclectic programme will offer the chance for delegates to hear from some of the most highly respected experts on the Dental Update editorial board.
 

Taking to the floor
 

To complement the extensive education on offer, the more than 400-stand trade floor is sure to impress. Leading dental suppliers will feature all the very latest products, technologies, materials and services in the industry, with fantastic deals available. These will include 3M ESPE, 3Shape, Belmont, Colgate, Curaprox UK, Carestream Dental, Denplan, DENTSPLY, GSK, Henry Schein, Heraeus Kulzer, Ivolclar Vivadent, Nobel Biocare, Philips, Shofu, Sirona, Voco and Wrights, to name but a few!
 

The exciting Launchpad UK initiative will also return in 2016, highlighting new innovations designed to streamline practice workflows and improve the patient experience.
 

Particularly in dentistry, who you know is often as important as what you know. Establishing a broad and effective network for support, clinical guidance, patient referrals and supply of equipment or consumables is essential, and the exhibition floor will help you meet both old friends and new. Co-located with The Dental Technology Showcase, the event will also facilitate easy networking within the lab community.
 

What’s more, the prestigious Dental Awards will be held on the Friday night of The Dentistry Show 2016 will once again. Presented by Purple Media Solutions, The Dental Awards are the premium awards of the dental sector, identifying and celebrating outstanding achievements in the past year.
 

Comments from the 2015 event included:
 

"It’s my first time at the show and I’ve found it a brilliant place to see and buy products – you get some exclusive deals here. I’ve spent money and attended a few educational sessions, so it’s been a very successful and enjoyable day for me." ­– Gillian Greig, Principal Dentist, The Private Dental Centre.
 

It's a fantastic event because there is a high intensity of exhibitors as well as excellent CPD opportunities. There is a broad spectrum of education, geared for every member of the dental team. I have felt welcome and comfortable at all theatres.” – Suzy Threadgold, Dental Hygienist at Houston Dental Practice.
 

Make sure you and your team don’t miss out – save the dates today!

 

The Dentistry Show and DTS 2016 will be held on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd April, NEC in Birmingham. For further details visit www.thedentistryshow.co.uk call 020 7348 5270 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  52222 Hits
52222 Hits
JAN
03
0

Keeping your course true - Sam Waley Cohen

Keeping your course true  - Sam Waley Cohen

A principal dentist is, in many ways, akin to a captain at the helm of a ship. It is their direction, experience and commitment that keeps a practice on the right course.

 

But, as captain, there are many different responsibilities that simply cannot be ignored. Compliance, recruitment, administration, discipline and finance: these are just a small selection of the duties that a principal dentist must manage on a daily basis – on top of their busy schedule of treating patients.    
 

This presents a very real problem for a great many principal dentists. Indeed, one of the most common factors for job dissatisfaction amongst practice owners is actually the stress of running a practice.[1] Even with a practice manager (or first-mate, to continue the maritime analogy) taking some of the strain, there are a multitude of unavoidable day-to-day tasks that are necessary for success.

 

But most dentists are not businesspeople – and, in all honesty, why should they be? They did not spend years at dental school to become anything but a dentist so it is understandable that some of the extraneous obligations that principals inevitably find themselves dealing with become the reason for professional failings and shortcomings.

 

And, of course, this can have very serious ramifications for the rest of the dental team. After all, if a ship’s captain has lost their way, what hope is there for the crew? Indeed, it is well documented that a large majority of workplace issues and employment tribunals in dental practices stem from the inability of a principal to treat their staff as business employees.[2]
 

There is a solution to this. Research has shown that dentists who join with a larger dental group exhibit greater work satisfaction than those who forge ahead alone. The two main benefits that were highlighted were an increase in downtime and the elimination of administrative stress.[3]
 

In fact, those dentists who joined dental corporates found themselves with more time to concentrate on the things that attracted them to a career in dentistry in the first place: practising dentistry.
 

Admittedly, dental corporates have acquired a negative reputation in the UK. Some professionals see them as profit-driven conglomerates that are intent on eliminating autonomy and imposing stringent uniformity. But while these unfortunate views persist, they are simply untrue.    
 

A dental corporate strives for one thing above all others: excellence. Whether that is clinical excellence, or the very highest standards in all other aspects of the dental business. Corporate leaders understand that the best way to promote excellence is to allow people to do the jobs they are best suited for. That is why they are enthusiastic about bringing together experts in all parts of the dental profession – from practitioners to nurses, IT gurus, marketing experts, recruitment leaders and compliance professionals.
 

By working together, and supporting each other, it becomes far easier to achieve the best. Whether its in matters of compliance, recruitment or discipline, there will always be a network of understanding, like-minded professionals to depend on.
 

So, joining a dental corporate should not be thought of as surrendering your ship to another captain: it’s far more like joining a fleet – a fleet formed of many individual ships, each with an individual captain, who all share a common direction, who can depend on each other for support and who are administered by a dedicated and experienced Admiralty.
 

Portman Dental is a dental corporate that truly promotes this idea. With around 30 practices across England, from Sheffield to the Isle of Wight, Portman Dental strives to make each individual practice the best it can be. It does this not by introducing radical changes that force its members to work in a certain way, but by providing the right support, direction and staff to allow for excellence to propagate naturally. Management is maintained on a local level, and supported by a central team of experts and only principals who are truly committed to the idea of cooperation and progression are taken on. 
 

Don’t allow workplace pressures and dissatisfaction to affect your practice’s success – or your wellbeing. Join a dental corporate and strike the truest course, for you and your team.

 

For more information about joining the Portman Dental team, please visit www.portmanhealthcare.co.uk or call on 0207 281 9489

 



[1] theyoungdentist.com – Working for a dental corporate – Is it for you?; published online: 2011; link: http://www.theyoungdentist.com/uk/careers/34-working-for-a-dental-corporate-is-it-for-you [accessed 02/09/15]

[2] British Dental Association (BDA) – Advice and support; link: https://www.bda.org/dentists/advice/Pages/index.aspx [accessed 02/09/15]

[3] American Dental Association – Practice setting may determine dentists’ satisfaction; published online: 2015; link: http://www.ada.org/en/publications/ada-news/2015-archive/july/practice-setting-may-determine-dentists-satisfaction-research-shows [accessed 02/09/15]

 

 

  3987 Hits
3987 Hits
JAN
03
0

Work together, not against each other

Work together, not against each other

I always try to be as open-minded about the development of our profession – I try to read extensively on many different topics to ensure I know what new ways I can care for the patients who come to me asking for help.

 

But every so often I come across certain articles and opinions that truly test my resolve. The most recent was a piece that was written to promote the work of holistic dentists and, while I am fully supportive of any dental professional who strives to improve their patients’ general health through their work, I found the particular attitude on display in this piece both cynical and unwarranted.
 

Indeed, it is an attitude I am seeing more and more often in the alternative press – how holistic or homeopathic dentists are the only ones in the profession who truly treat their patients as a whole, not just a set of disembodied teeth.
 

Admittedly, when I’m working and the patient is dozing off in the chair and I’ve got my microscope on and all I can see is the canal, it’s easy to get a little bit lost in the treatment. Of course, I’ve never completely forgotten that there is a person attached to the tooth, but sometimes – and I am sure that many of you are exactly the same – I can become so absorbed in what I am doing that the tooth is all I see.
 

But beyond the treatment, this is by no means the case. Dentists in this country are part of a caring, protecting profession and we are all aware of the links between oral health and general health. We always discuss dietary habits with our patients, explain how stress and anxiety may manifest in dental conditions such as bruxism or TMJ disorders.
 

That holistic dentists would try to monopolise this aspect of the responsibility all dental practitioners have to their patients is simply a cynical marketing tactic – and it is fundamentally inaccurate.
 

What’s worse is the attitudes many alternative practitioners have to the materials and techniques the majority of modern professionals use on a daily basis. In particular, holistic dentistry attacks amalgams, portraying them as irredeemably toxic, or fluoridated water as an institutionalised evil.
 

This attitude is undermining the profession apart from the inside. As dentists, we already have to protect ourselves from the bad reputation external sources burden us with; to have to do the same from our own colleagues is a disaster. True, we should welcome diversity and forward thinking, but this can only happen without the need to scare the public or lambast each other.

 

For further information please call EndoCare on 020 7224 0999 or visit www.endocare.co.uk

 

 

 

Dr Michael Sultan BDS MSc DFO FICD is a Specialist in Endodontics and the Clinical Director of EndoCare. Michael qualified at Bristol University in 1986. He worked as a general dental practitioner for 5 years before commencing specialist studies at Guy’s hospital, London. He completed his MSc in Endodontics in 1993 and worked as an in-house Endodontist in various practices before setting up in Harley St, London in 2000. He was admitted onto the specialist register in Endodontics in 1999 and has lectured extensively to postgraduate dental groups as well as lecturing on Endodontic courses at Eastman CPD, University of London. He has been involved with numerous dental groups and has been chairman of the Alpha Omega dental fraternity. In 2008 he became clinical director of EndoCare, a group of specialist practices.

        

 

 

 

  3846 Hits
3846 Hits
JAN
03
0

Naturally beautiful

Naturally beautiful

To create natural-looking and strong restorations in order to achieve the beautiful smile patients desire, you need products that you can rely on.

 

Filtek Supreme XTE universal restorative from 3M ESPE incorporates enhanced ease of use and clinical performance.[i] Utilising unique nanofiller technology, it achieves the polishability and polish retention typical of a microfill and provides excellent handling, strength and wear properties needed for universal indications.[ii]

 

Filtek Supreme XTE universal restorative is available in 36 shades and opacities meaning you will always be able to provide a suitable aesthetic match for your patients.[iii] Contact the team at 3M ESPE today to find out how Filtek Supreme XTE universal restorative can benefit your practice.

 

For more information, call 0845 602 5094 or visit www.3Mespe.co.uk



[i] 3M ESPE Internal Date, Filtek Supreme XTE, Clinical results, 2009. Claim no 4303

[ii] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Supreme XTE, Technology, 2009. Claim no 4097

[iii] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Supreme XTE Esthetics, 2009. Claim no 4188

 

  3433 Hits
3433 Hits
JAN
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Fresh Breath for Healthy Living

 Fresh Breath for Healthy Living

Naturally, young people compare their appearance with models, actors and celebrities depicted in advertising and the media. Youngsters also have a tendency to ignore other abilities and focus on appearance as evidence of worthiness. However, there is still much to commend about this generation’s attitudes towards fitness and wellbeing as they lay down the foundations for a healthy life.

 

In general, the younger generation has a healthy disposition and research conducted over the last decade reveals that an increasing proportion of youngsters eat fruit and vegetables, are physically active on a daily basis, rate their health as excellent, practice safe sex, and live free of tobacco and cannabis.[1] There is also a decline in those that drink alcohol weekly and gym use has increased threefold in a generation. The consequences are that young adults are now more inclined to take regular exercise than people did 30 years ago and 48% of 16-24 year olds use a fitness app on a regular basis.[2] Special diets that focus on organic, lactose and dairy-free foods have trebled in popularity over a generation,[3] but conversely, young adults are placing much less emphasis on their oral health.

 

According to statistics, the number of people that visited an NHS dentist in England has fallen since 2013.[4] Furthermore, the highest prevalence of decay on the crowns of the teeth was found in adults aged 25 to 34.[5] This would indicate that although young adults seem to be better informed and enthusiastic about their general health and fitness some are neglecting to look after their teeth.

 

The condition of the teeth significantly affects a person’s appearance and cracked, missing, stained or unhygienic teeth look unhealthy and unattractive. Along with this, untreated dental problems, a build up of plaque and periodontal disease are common causes of oral malodour, which can lead to a lack of confidence and social withdrawal. As we know, the health of the mouth impacts significantly to the general wellbeing of the body and effective oral hygiene is required to preserve it. When speaking to young patients, dental professionals need to reinforce the message and encourage them to take their oral health just as seriously as every other aspect of their fitness.

 

Along with effective tooth brushing and interdental cleaning, it is wise to recommend a mouth rinse to keep breath smelling fresh. With the hectic lifestyle that many young people lead, CB12 mouth rinse can be used as a convenient daily oral deodorant to prevent bad breath. Just one shot begins working instantly and its unique, patented formula adheres to the tissues of the oral cavity to eliminate unpleasant breath for up to 12 hours. Many of your patients may experience dry mouth during a work out or ‘ketone breath’ if they are following a specific diet but CB12 has the solution. As well as the rinse, CB12 Boost is a sugar free chewing gum that can be used to freshen and invigorate the breath after meals and throughout the day. CB12 products have been developed by dentists and contain specific ingredients to reduce plaque, strengthen teeth and prevent cavities so you can empower young patients to look after their oral health with confidence.

 

Although the younger generation seem to be very savvy about health and fitness the power is in still your hands. By encouraging your patients to take their oral health seriously with a regular daily routine, you can enrich their lives well into the future.

 

For more information about CB12 and how it could benefit your patients, please visit www.cb12.co.uk

 


[1] Trends in young people's health and social determinants. The European Journal of Public Health Volume 25, Issue suppl 2, 1 April 2015. http://eurpub.oxfordjournals.org/content/25/suppl_2

[2] The health and care of young people. June 2015 Health and Social Care information Centre.

http://www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB17772/Focus-on-h-c-young-people-main-June-2015.pdf

[3] The Good Life report commissioned by Holland and Barrett. 2014. Available at http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sponsored/health/good-life/

[4] NHS Dental Statistics for England 2014/15. 20th August 2015. Health and Social Care Information Centre. http://www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB18129/nhs-dent-stat-eng-14-15-rep.pdf

[5] Executive Summary: Adult Dental Health Survey 2009. 24th March 2011. Health and Social Care Information Centre. http://www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB01086/adul-dent-heal-surv-summ-them-exec-2009-rep2.pdf

 

  3776 Hits
3776 Hits
JAN
03
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Bringing patients and dentists together for less

Bringing patients and dentists together for less

When it comes to dental care, patients want to feel as though they are getting the maximum value for their money – and by working with Munroe Sutton, they can be sure they are.  

 

By offering a range of great discounts to patients, Munroe Sutton provides easy and affordable access to both the essential care and optional dental treatments that patients desire, for less. In turn, this will boost participating practices’ patient numbers, filling appointment books and helping them grow as a business.

 

Becoming a part of Munroe Sutton is free for dental practices and gives you access to a vast network designed to promote and market your services to a broad variety of people.

 

The team at Munroe Sutton are committed to providing patients with the most affordable solution to high quality dental care, while also helping practices maximise chair time and maintain optimal profitability. Find out how they can bring you and your new patients together; contact the team today.

 

For more information please call 0808 234 3558 or visit www.munroesutton.co.uk

  2898 Hits
2898 Hits
JAN
03
0

Understanding geographical variations - Christie + Co

Understanding geographical variations - Christie + Co

Geography can play a significant role in the success of any practice transaction. From regional variations in value, demand and activity to patient demographics, understanding the local trends and market characteristics are all vital when ensuring the optimum transactional outcome. 
 

Christie + Co has specialists in 16 locations across the country, providing convenient, reliable access and insights into the local markets. For instance we understand that the areas that see the most interest are London and the South East, with the Midlands and some areas in the North also experiencing very high demand. This causes significant regional variations in practice valuation and it seems that the closer you get to the extremities of the UK, the more values ‘fall off’.
 

With years of experience valuing businesses across many market sectors and experts located across the UK, Christie + Co understand the significance of local knowledge. So if you’re looking to purchase a practice and want to ensure you make the most appropriate decisions based on in depth local and national insight, contact the experts at Christie + Co today.
 

To discuss how Christie + Co might help you achieve your future plans please contact Simon Hughes on 020 7227 0749

  3192 Hits
3192 Hits
JAN
03
0

Need annuity advice?

Need annuity advice?

When it comes to pensions and annuities, the Government is constantly changing the rules and moving the goalposts. It’s no wonder many dentists are struggling to know which decisions to make in regards to their own retirement.

 

Luckily money4dentists is here to help. As specialist Independent Financial Advisers (IFAs) to dentists, the money4dentists team have over half a Century’s experience in the profession and are there to help ensure you make the optimum decisions when it comes to your finances.    

 

From the economic climate to the amount in your pension and from your geographic location to your health and lifestyle; the amount you receive from an annuity depends upon a long list of variables.

 

So if you are considering retiring soon, or want to be sure to plan for a secure, worry-free future, it pays to seek out the advice of an IFA that has experience and understanding of your profession. Turn to the experts at money4dentists and take a step towards a safe financial future.

 

For more information please call 0845 345 5060 or 0754 DENTIST.

Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.money4dentists.com

  3209 Hits
3209 Hits
JAN
03
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“A high quality learning pathway”

A high quality learning pathway

“I was keen to take the Inman Aligner training course after attending an inspirational lecture by Dr. Tif Qureshi on ‘Align, Bleach and Bond’ at the FGDP,” says Dr. Rima Patel, who works at dental practices in Crystal Palace and Carshalton.

 

“Associates in both practices I work in had previously attended and begun offering the appliance to their patients – so there were always enquiries about it. I wanted to develop my skills, in order to also be able to offer patients what they wanted, rather than having to refer them to a colleague.

 

“I had expected there to be more people attending the course on the day – and the lecture to be more crowded. I was pleasantly surprised, however, that it was a small group, and that the lectures were of the highest quality. Everything was explained thoroughly and the hands-on element complemented the presentations.

 

“I would recommend the Inman Aligner training course to others, as I feel the IAS Academy has a structured learning pathway you can follow and the guidance and information provided was of a high quality and very detailed in nature.”

 

To discover what you could learn, contact the friendly IAS Academy team today.

 

For more information on upcoming IAS Academy training courses, including the Inman Aligner,

  13419 Hits
13419 Hits
JAN
03
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‘100% of dentists would recommend...’

100% of dentists would recommend...

In a poll taken during the BDIA Showcase, 100% of dentists interviewed said they would recommend Wisdom Clean Between Interdental Brushes to their patients.[i]

 

As a further testament to the quality and effectiveness of the products, over 85% said they would use them themselves.

 

The Wisdom Clean Between Interdental Brushes feature a super soft rubber design with the flexibility to clean even the smallest interdental spaces with ease. Completely metal-free, patients who have struggled with interdental brushes in the past are likely to find these simple and effective to use.

 

Ideal for those with orthodontic appliances, dental implants, metal fillings or crowns, and available in three different sizes, the Clean Between Interdental Brushes are suitable for every situation.

 

From September, Dentist Surgery Packs of Wisdom Clean Between Interdental Brushes will be available via dental wholesalers, consisting of dispenser boxes with 100 cello-wrapped sample packs of each colour of brush. Make sure you get yours and discover for yourself how much they can help your patients!

 

To discover why so many dentists recommend the Wisdom Clean Between Interdental Brushes, contact the team today.

 

To find out more, please visit www.wisdomtoothbrushes.com or call 01440 714800



[i] BDTA 2013/2014, poll carried out by Wisdom during events. 

 

  10265 Hits
10265 Hits
JAN
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Caring and Cosseting

Caring & Cosseting

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9431 Hits
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Dental Desires 2016

Dental Desires 2016

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8888 Hits
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GDC hearings: The imbalance of probabilities

GDC hearings: The imbalance of probabilities

GDC hearings: The imbalance of probabilities

Can we make the Regulators serve the Public and the Profession in foro conscientiae (the court of the conscience), rather than just a notion of what the regulations might say?

I have attended and been asked to make some input into a variety of cases recently involving several different Regulators.

It has become clear that there is a real danger that rules and regulations which may have been drafted for the protection of the Public and the guidance of the Profession are sometimes widely misinterpreted at best and occasionally deliberately corrupted and applied at worst.

How does this occur?

Whilst it might be considered that most regulation has been drafted to improve standards and reduce the risk of poor practice continuing; it is quite obvious that it can be applied in a manner to exert control or ‘manage’ the Profession. Sometimes this may occur deliberately and because it broadly serves the purpose of a government administration, it is allowed to continue at least as long as it serves a purpose. Sometimes it occurs at a much lower level and whilst not serving any particular purpose, it is allowed to continue because there is nobody at that level who is prepared to question it.

I’ve got nothing against shop assistants, however I wouldn’t be wanting them to draft the GDC Charge Sheet which might end a Professional career. There is a high turnover of staff at the GDC which I suggest leads to a poor understanding and there appears to be a low level of dental knowledge.

What this might mean if you are in the dock

One of the cases to which I refer involved a young colleague, and for whom funds were raised at very short notice thanks to the excellent GDPUK membership.

If you read the Charge Sheet, you would be forgiven in believing this dentist was a real danger to the Public. However I’m sure that you will all remember me reminding you to read between the lines whenever you are dealing with a Regulator. That is certainly necessary in this case.

Example appearing on a Charge Sheet

(i)            The use of a double cantilever (the bridge was fixed-fixed)

(ii)           Not adequately assess that a RCT was required (the tooth was root treated and had been a symptom free bridge abutment for 20 years)

(iii)          Fitted an inadequate post which was a) short of the apex, b) not extending to the apical third and c) was inadequate in width. (The post was temporary and deemed too wide).

If the Charge sheet is a nonsense, the solution is simple. The Panel changes it, strikes it out or substitutes different wording. In other words, it moves the goalposts. The Panel, which is independent by hearing both parties then asks its own questions of the witnesses. It is advised by experts and can choose which expert it ‘prefers’. The expert appearing on behalf of a registrant might then be warned by the Prosecution barrister that the GDC may take action against them. The prosecuting barrister is instructed by the GDC and regularly prompted by their expert witness.

In one of the cases to which I refer, four patient witnesses who had made a complaint were called. One of the witnesses was travelling to London and it was found that she intended to speak in favour of the Defendant and it was agreed therefore that this patient would not be heard.  

The Panel seemed to have some ability to read between the lines, but in the end ‘prefers’ the testimony of two patients. One of these patients produces a hand annotated diary of the treatment dates containing some dates that the defendant was actually not in the practice (a screen shot of practice diary was produced as evidence). The patient was receiving treatment from more than one dentist at two different practices simultaneously, but on the ‘balance of probability’ is to be believed. This patient was heard to say that she was seeking ‘redress’ on at least four occasions.

Our young colleague describes how he always uses rubber dam for RCT and yet on his last day in the practice he finds there is no rubber dam available. He admits that on this single solitary occasion, rubber dam was not used. The patient has pleaded that a temporary post crown be placed (the same inadequate temporary post that was short of the apex) and he accedes to the request of RCT and temporary post, since the broken tooth was within the patients smile. He uses rotary RCT instrumentation, floss on hand instruments and high volume aspiration. The patient is the same one who was not given the opportunity to give further evidence in support or denial of the registrant. Our young colleague is guilty therefore of serious clinical failures and therefore misconduct.       

Another patient gives evidence about never having received treatment he has paid for, but the Panel agrees that this evidence is just not credible, which it isn’t.

A fourth patient was having a long and complex treatment plan part of which had been incomplete and following a tooth fracture needed to be modified. The patient didn’t clearly understand the new treatment plan and for that our colleague was criticised.

It’s worth mentioning that there were NO PATIENT RECORDS available because there had been a burglary declared immediately following the practice change of ownership. This was highlighted to the Panel. 

Communication was a big word in this Hearing. Other significant words are ‘insight’ and whether or not the Panel consider that this is ‘embedded’ sufficiently. Our young colleague was supported by Sir Peter Bottomley in person who made a statement and also by the testimonials of 47 patients.

The GDC however do not need to give weight to the above in making their determination, although I noted that the prosecution barrister frequently returned to the GDC to ask for further instructions. I think it worthy of note that the Panel describe our young colleague within the Determination as follows ‘It is clear from all of this evidence that you are viewed as a competent and caring dentist, who will go out of his way to assist his patients.’

Do the GDC therefore need to apply Conditions, because that’s what they did? 

Please read the GDC Determination when it is published.

So what?

If you recognise any of the issues above, you are guilty of misconduct and your standards will be deemed serious failings. Approximately 1 in 7 dentists in the UK currently face some form of investigation which could result in imposition of sanctions either through the GDC, CQC or NHS and this number is growing constantly. This might mean that we have the worst performing Dental Profession in the World bar none or that we have the most disproportionate Regulators.

You may consider yourself lucky and are happy to cross the bridge with your indemnity organisation when your time comes; or you may be sufficiently confident to wade across the raging torrent alone when your indemnity organisation makes an unexpected discretionary decision against you.  

What type of indemnity organisation are you currently paying for?

How can it be legal?

You are required to have professional indemnity and it is considered a serious failure if you have ANY gaps in your cover period. Indemnity providers however do not guarantee to provide legal representation to you and if they exercise their discretion in favour of their balance sheet (or dressed up as other members interests) you will find yourself alone or facing a huge legal bill.

A recent Hearing which I attended over 7 days starts at £32,000 and it’s uphill from there.

Does anything need to be done about this?

You read the PSA report published 21st Dec, I hope.  https://www.professionalstandards.org.uk/docs/default-source/psa-library/investigation-report---general-dental-council.pdf?sfvrsn=6

What exactly have we learned about whistleblowing from the Sir Robert Francis Report (Mid Staffs)?

And you can see how the whistleblower was treated, you can see what the PSA thinks about it and you have seen how the GDC are going to be dealing with your ‘serious failings.’

You tell me, do you need to do something about this?

So where are we now?

From a variety of recent cases we can conclude:

·         The GDC consider failure to use a rubber dam in endodontics to fall seriously below the required standards and therefore to represent IMPAIRMENT and worthy of sanctions.

·         In my view neither the CQC nor the GDC have a currently correct understanding of CONSENT which conforms with the recent Supreme Court judgement of Montgomery – v Lanarkshire Health Board. This needs to be challenged in the High Court.

·         The GDC will always use the ‘balance of probability’ in forming an opinion on which evidence it prefers. 

So where are we going in 2016?

The Profession must for once in its life join together. The issues regarding Consent and use of rubber dam will need to be challenged and this requires more than a well-intentioned individual or some crowd funding. It requires a strongly actioned move being taken by the BDA and the indemnity providers.

 

 

Image credit -Michael Coghlan under CC licence - not modified.   

  14824 Hits
14824 Hits
DEC
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0

Introducing Humble Brush

Introducing Humble Brush

Recently launched in the UK and Ireland, Humble Brush is an exciting new product that aids dental health while protecting the environment and supporting less fortunate communities around the globe.

 

Dr Noel Abdayem, one of the founders of Humble Brush, as well as James Hamill from Quintess Denta – exclusive distributor in the UK and Ireland – and Dr Darren Weiss, President of the Humble Smile Foundation (www.humblesmile.org), introduced the inspiring product at a press launch in August this year.

 

Humble Brush features an ergonomically designed, biodegradable, panda-friendly bamboo handle that offers natural antiseptic properties. This is complemented by soft, degradable nylon bristles and packaging  made from 100% recycled materials.

 

You have the power to not only provide your patients with a truly effective and environmentally friendly adjunct, but also gain assurance that with every Humble Brush sold, the equivalent value will be donated to people in need.

 

Furthermore, you can test this remarkable product with a free toothbrush sample available for each practice. To help make a difference, contact the team at Humble Brush today.

 

 

Humble Brush is now available in the UK and Ireland. For more information visit www.humblebrush.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0286 862 8880. To order contact our exclusive distributor Quintess Denta at www.quintesshumblebrush.co.uk

 

Follow us on social media:

@HumbleBrush and www.facebook.com/humblebrushuk

 

  3500 Hits
3500 Hits
DEC
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Education of the “highest quality”

Education of the highest quality.

Dr. Rima Patel, who works at dental practices in both Crystal Palace and Carshalton, recently took part in the Inman Aligner training course, provided by the IAS Academy.

 

“I attended the Inman Aligner training course in December 2014,” says Dr. Patel. “I initially booked a place following an inspirational lecture given by Dr. Tif Qureshi on ‘Align, Bleach and Bond’, held at the FGDP. He was also offering a small discount to attendees of that lecture, so it presented a great opportunity.

 

“Several of my colleagues had already been using the Inman Aligner – so patients were always enquiring about it. As a result, I wanted to be able to offer my own patients what they wanted, rather than having to refer them to a colleague.

 

“I had thought that the course would be crowded, that a lot of people would be attending the lecture – but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was a small group. The lecture was of the highest quality and everything was explained thoroughly; the hands-on element complemented the presentations very well.

 

“It was also great that there was a small trade fair running over lunch, which gave us the opportunity to meet and talk to different people from different companies.

 

“I would recommend the Inman Aligner training course to others, because I feel as though the IAS Academy provides a structured educational pathway for you to follow – and the guidance and information it offers is of a high quality and detailed in nature.”  

 

The IAS Academy provides a number of training opportunities, including the Inman Aligner course, that are designed to give GDPs the confidence and expertise to offer their patients more in the way of alternative anterior alignment orthodontics. A truly unique and dedicated learning pathway, the IAS Academy focuses on education as much as it does on effective appliances, ensuring excellent levels of competence and success.

 

For more information on upcoming IAS Academy training courses, including the Inman Aligner,

please visit www.iasortho.com or call 0845 366 5477

  12862 Hits
12862 Hits
DEC
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Leading the way in cosmetic dentistry

b2ap3_thumbnail_andrea-_-prestige-1.jpg

Prestige Dental’s product specialist, Jennifer Ball, was delighted to be in attendance at the grand opening of Andrea Ubhi Cosmetic Dentistry’s new practice in York earlier this year.
 

As well as rubbing shoulders with the likes of model and former Miss England, Georgia Horsley, who officially opened the practice, Jennifer was able to meet the award-winning “Team of the Year North 2015” (Dental Awards) and bring everyone up to speed on the extensive range of quality dental products Prestige Dental can supply.
 

Commenting on the event, Jennifer said: ‘It was a great evening – warm and inviting. The practice seamlessly combines the lovely original features of the building with state-of-the-art dental equipment. It has a huge wow factor!
 

‘You could see they have worked hard to create a relaxing environment; a recipe for success for both happy staff and happy patients.’
 

The new premises are run by a team of 18, housing four ultra-modern surgeries, two waiting rooms and the latest technology, including CT scanning equipment and a Seiler microscope.
 

In particular, Jennifer was taken by the glass ‘pods’, where the treatment co-ordinator can sit down with patients to discuss their needs and wants, as well as consultation rooms that allow for patient/dentist interaction without the pressure of a clinical setting.

 

If you would like to know about the range of quality products available from Prestige Dental, please call 01274 721567 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

  3280 Hits
3280 Hits
DEC
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Catch 22 for Young People

Catch 22 for Young People

The term “Catch 22”, first used in Joseph Heller’s novel, described the constraints placed on soldiers during World War II. Since then it has become a familiar way to describe the predicament of being trapped by contradictory rules or circumstances.

 

When leaving education, many young people now find themselves in a “Catch 22” situation simply because they don’t have any knowledge of the working world, yet employers frequently prefer to hire candidates with some form of previous work experience.

 

There are around 1.85 million people unemployed in the UK[1] and an analysis by the House of Commons Library for Labour states that people aged between 16 and 24 now fare comparatively worse than others at any point since 1992, with this age group nearly three times more likely to be unemployed than the rest of the population.[2] Without enough jobs to go around, there are fewer opportunities for youngsters to work part time or have weekend jobs during education as previous generations did. Consequently, many are finding themselves out in the big wide world with very little or no work experience.

 

To address the situation the government is investing in apprenticeship schemes to encourage more 16-24 year olds into work. The new employer-led Trailblazers Apprenticeship programmes are ideal for young people, enabling them to earn as they learn, gaining valuable experience as they train in a worthwhile profession. From the employer’s point of view, the advantages of taking on an apprentice are multi-faceted. Not only are business owners and managers able to grow talent in-house, moulding and encouraging individuals to work to the methods and standards they need to increase productivity, but it also allows them to remain competitive and retain a committed workforce. What’s more, taking on an apprentice is rewarding, both on a personal level and for the team as they are able to pass on their knowledge and experience, feeling valued and pleased to play an active part in training a new recruit. Indeed, studies reveal that 92% of employers who employ apprentices believe that apprenticeship schemes lead to a more motivated and satisfied workforce.[3]

 

Apprenticeship programmes are now led and developed by employers to ensure that trainees attain the necessary skills and standards to meet the needs of UK industry and to build a competent workforce for the future. Along with other top employers and governing bodies, Mustafa Mohammed – owner of Genix Healthcare and Sparkle Dental Labs and Chair for the new Trailblazers Apprenticeship Programmes in Dentistry – has been instrumental in spearheading new apprenticeship programmes in both Dental Nursing and Dental Practice Management. Together they have created new training pathways and assessment methods to provide young people with the practical skills and experience they require for long and successful careers. Similarly, employers are able to gain the calibre of staff that they need to continue the high standards expected in dentistry.

With the top quality training and support the dentistry sector has to offer, it is possible to rescue some young people from the “Catch 22” situation. If you are thinking of recruiting a new member of your team, why not consider taking on an apprentice?

 

For more details contact the team today.

 

 

For additional information from the National Apprenticeship Service, please visit www.apprenticeship.org.uk.

 

For additional information please call 0845 838 1122, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.genixhealthcare.com

 



[1] Unemployment Rate in the United Kingdom as reported by the Office for National Statistics.

[2] Youth unemployment rate is worst for 20 years, compared with overall figure: Youth unemployment. The Observer. Available online at http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/feb/22/youth-unemployment-jobless-figure

[3] Skills Training UK

 

  4079 Hits
4079 Hits
DEC
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1

Moyes Out

Moyes Out

I could basically repeat this mantra for the whole of this blog and I don’t think many would disagree with it (except of course Bill himself). However, I think my readers are more used to having a bit more to get their teeth into, so I’ll pad this out a little more. It won’t run to the 306 pages of the Professional Standards Authority report (here) into the GDC, but the sentiment is the same…

As well as reading my ramblings, I would strongly urge you read two blogs by a couple of fellow colleagues whom I have the utmost respect for. This blog was not originally going to be about Ghosts of Christmases Past, Present, and Future, but it is quite an appropriate analogy.

These are our perspectives on what has gone before, what is still happening, and what we need to do. Three views for the price of one.

http://dominicohooley.svbtle.com/a-christmas-tale

http://campbellacademy.co.uk/blog/short-gdc-update/

I am very aware of the warnings by Dental Protection not to be too critical of the GDC in public. However, I think the publication of the recent report allows me to point out some factual issues in that report, and exercise my right to free speech about a public body without too much fear.

The PSA’s whistleblower report makes fascinating, and at times unbelievable reading. What is clear from it is that the GDC at both Executive and Council level is not only a failed organisation, but a completely and utterly incompetent, insensitive, and dare I say it, corrupt (in the ethical and moral sense) edifice that now needs to be put out of OUR misery.

The report is probably the reason that Ms. Gilvarry has decided the time is right to move on. We can only hope that other regulators do not suffer in the same way as we have in the recent past; I would certainly hope any organisation thinking of engaging her in a similar position is made aware of this damning report and the role she quite obviously played. It’s really not something I’d want on my CV.

From the writing of policies by untrained and unknowledgeable staff who then went on to train more untrained and unknowledgeable staff in the process of discipline (via the Investigating Committee), the lack of scrutiny of the IC’s work, the failure to correct the problems outlined in the previous PSA report, having an ineffectual whistleblowing policy, rewriting it and it still being useless, to the utter lack of oversight by the very Council whose duty it is to ensure the Executive do not go off on a tangent, there can be no doubt the GDC has become a derided regulator both by the profession and the PSA.

So how on earth then can the Chair feel he can remain in post too? Not only that, are the other members of the Council so isolated from the real world situation everyone else can clearly see, that they somehow feel they have no responsibility for this disaster of an organisation that they are at the head of?

Having a regulator that uses untrained staff, described by their own director as just ‘bums on seats’ and ‘clones’, to be responsible for an entire section of a professional disciplinary process is nothing short of negligent. It is admitted in the PSA report that they were under pressure from the Executive to ‘Get the Job Done’, which implies the rulebook went out of the window. When people’s careers, livelihoods, wellbeing and indeed their personal lives are being held in the hands of people quite obviously out of their depth and unaware of their duty, then that attitude by the Executive is utterly reprehensible. Not only that, there still has to be the accountability that is sadly lacking. These members of staff are not specifically blamed by the PSA for the problems, as it was recognized the responsibility was entirely that of those in overall charge of the systems (and some of them are no longer in post thankfully), but one would hope that the moral compass of anybody involved would direct them to make the right decision and now leave.

Whilst the influence of these people was seemingly only on the members of the Investigating Committee, one would hope that the integrity of those on that committee was such as to not be influenced by them. However, by a simple process of extrapolation it makes one worry that other committees were under pressure of being influenced in the same way. The evidence for this isn’t in the PSA report because they didn’t specifically look for it, but we all know the GDC have acted unlawfully before in setting the ARF, which isn’t exactly a great track record. Not only that, but the findings suggest that the situation the PSA investigated with the Investigating Committee leaves the GDC open to further legal challenges via Judicial Review over the decisions it made. I would therefore suggest that EVERY SINGLE case that falls within the dates the report encompasses is reviewed and looked at independently, at the GDC’s own cost. If that bankrupts it, good. Perhaps the Government might take notice when it has to bail out the GDC.

It’s a bit like a parent dealing with a delinquent child; it tends to ignore it hoping things will get better, then gives it a stern talking too, but when it finally has to go down to the police station and bail it out for a serious offence the realisation that there is probably something perhaps seriously wrong with its offspring begins to dawn.

It’s one thing Ms. Gilvarry falling on her sword (or was she pushed?), but the supervisory role of the council during this period was non-existent. In addition, the judgment of the chair has also been called into question over decisions that he made. The sort of important decisions we take for granted will be made correctly by someone in his position. The sort of decisions that if we made incorrectly would see us in front of the regulators fearing for our careers….

There is NO way that Dr Moyes has the respect of the profession as a result. He has shown his lack of understanding of the profession on so many occasions, starting with the infamous Pendebury lecture where he likened us to the supermarket sector. That’s all well and good in this increasingly consumerist world, but you don’t get people losing their careers if they give you the wrong shape carrot or your tin of beans is past the sell by date.

So I address the final part of this blog to those people involved in the whole sorry affair.

To the Investigating Committee Secretariat, you must ensure nothing like this is ever allowed to happen again. The overwhelming majority of people in dentistry are good people, and they are not numbers that need processing despite your instructions to ‘get the job done’ by what appears to be a bunch of Dentist Haters. There is no defence to the excuse of ‘we were just following orders’; Nuremberg in 1947 saw to that. Whilst the GDC whistleblowing policy has been shown to be pretty useless, please bear in mind the need to do the right thing if there are things you are not comfortable with. Please remember, you are not the judge and jury.

To the members of the council; you might have thought that being part of the GDC would be altruistic and for the greater benefit of our profession. It should be. You might even have thought it looked good on the CV. At one time it would have conveyed respect and deference. But given the utter failings and lack of detailed, focussed, professional management that has occurred, you might be better admitting you were unwittingly coerced by the members of a ruling Politburo, which might go some way to rescuing both your CV and your own professional reputation. The Council’s oversight has been so lacking, not even Specsavers could help it.

Finally, wake up and smell the coffee Dr. Moyes. You seem to have absolutely no idea what being part of a profession is, and the members of the council have obviously not educated you properly (or been allowed to). The insight that you rightly demand of your registrants has been sadly lacking by your entire organisation, and given the tone of your emails to us particularly by yourself. I’m just waiting the email from you saying what a resounding endorsement of the GDC the PSA report is, since that’s the usual spin that is put on things at Wimpole Street. Your oversight of the Executive has been completely ineffectual. Your part in this whole debacle cannot be brushed under the table; it happened on your watch so you must bear responsibility at least in part. It’s quite ironic that some of your previous posts have been with the Office of Fair Trading and Monitor. Because there has been absolutely nothing fair about this organisation whilst you have been at the head, and your monitoring of what was going on around you appears to have been non-existent. Dentists might be in the minority of whom you regulate; but believe me without us the profession couldn’t exist. Ignore us at your peril.

For that reason your fitness to regulate has been found impaired and you must face the sanctions.

Dr. Moyes, you must resign.

You must all resign.

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Ruth Dening

Dentist

Thank you. A good resume of the facts thus far, as indeed are the links given. In fact we might be considered to be failing in ou... Read More
Monday, 28 December 2015 14:22
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Wearing more than a new school uniform

Wearing more than a new school uniform

With the new school year just around the corner, there’s a good chance some of your younger patients may well be exhibiting stress-related symptoms, including grinding and clenching that will cause wear beyond that which we would expect for their age.

 

Given the potential to affect their oral health for a lifetime – especially once the permanent dentition starts to erupt – this is an issue that needs to be tackled as quickly as possible.

 

Signs and symptoms associated with bruxism in children might include changes to their facial symmetry, inability of the lips to form an adequate seal, pain in the area of the masseter or temporalis muscles upon palpation, headaches and earaches, dentine sensitivity, and temporomandibular disorders, as well as anterior and posterior cross bites and tooth wear.

 

If a child presents with warning signs that may be attributed to bruxism, it will be helpful to ensure he/she is brushing effectively yet gently with a relatively soft toothbrush and a toothpaste that is low in abrasivity, as well as suggesting they do something relaxing before bed such as reading or having a bath.

 

In addition, a soft mouthguard to be worn at night may be customised to prevent further damage to the dentition, which will need to be changed regularly for younger patients as the child and their teeth develop.

 

The London Tooth Wear Centre® offers an evidence-based and comprehensive approach to managing tooth wear. To request advice, make a referral or for further information on the work of the London Tooth Wear Centre®, please visit www.toothwear.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 7486 7180.

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Hope got me through . . Terry Waite CBE

Hope got me through  . .  Terry Waite CBE

‘Hope got me through…..’ Terry Waite CBE

A warming Xmas story to boost practice manager’s morale

 

I have been to many a Christmas carol concert over the years but this festive season I attended one that I will never forget! The concert was held in aid of Emmaus, a UK charity that helps homeless people off the streets and of which Terry Waite CBE is president. For those young readers who may not know, Terry was an envoy for the Church of England in the late 1980’s. He travelled to Lebanon to try to secure the release of four hostages but was kidnapped himself and held captive from 1987 to 1991. Terry spent almost five years, including four Christmases, in solitary confinement without any news of his family, his friends or the outside world. Torture and mock executions were a regular occurrence.

Terry was invited to be a guest reader at the concert and he relayed a story to us of his fourth Christmas in solitary confinement……the room was dark, damp and cold. There was no source of heating and only a single blanket to keep him warm. Terry was forced to sit on the floor in the tailor’s position whilst shackled to a radiator which for a very tall man must have been torture in itself. His only source of light was a single candle; his only company, a bible. One day, after many attempts, Terry managed to encourage his guard to tell him the time and date. He was surprised to find that it was late afternoon on Christmas Eve. Terry decided to celebrate Christmas by holding his own, personal Holy Communion so saved a small piece of bread and drop of water from his meagre rations. His candle was burning low but he wanted to wait as long as possible to be sure that his celebration was as near to Christmas Day as possible. In the dying light of his candle, Terry took the morsel of bread and water, blessed it and savoured it whilst reading a passage from his bible. The moment passed as the light finally died.

When asked how he survived these lonely, unbearable years, Terry’s answer was ‘hope’!

I think in the world of the practice manager there is much hope that can be taken from this message and many synergies too. I work with many practice managers who feel lonely and isolated incarcerated in their cold offices in the rafters of their practices. Communication with busy staff can be scarce increasing the sense of segregation. On the rare occasion that a staff meeting is held, everyone wants a ‘piece of flesh’ or demands answers about something. The practice principal is generally focused on the clinical workload leaving the burden of renewed CQC inspections, financial management and human resource issues to the overloaded practice manager. The pressure to perform is sometimes torturous. On top of the internal workload scrutiny is increasing from the outside world. A week rarely goes by without dentistry featuring in media headlines and public observation of the dental profession being heavily influenced by this bad press. The weight of complaints handling and demands from patients also falls on a practice manager’s shoulders and sometimes ‘giving blood’ is still not enough in some cases!

So, where can a practice manager find ‘hope’ in such difficult circumstances? How can they release the burden, shake off the shackles and find freedom and enlightenment as Terry did? One definition of hope is ‘a feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen’. This is all well and good, but in business, hope sometimes needs to be accompanied by a ‘mental shift’ to allow change and escapism to happen.

Here are my ten top tips for seeing your hopes come to fruition:-

1.      Define your purpose – be clear as to what kind of manager you wish to be. Take responsibility for shaping the future.

2.      Embrace change – be proud of what you have achieved to date but embrace change and make improvements.

3.      Keep moving forward – view failures and disappointments as an opportunity to improve, evolve and succeed.

4.      Communicate – plan, organise and review communications with your team and patients to be effective.

5.      Lead authentically - be sensitive, open, firm and fair. Learn to listen. Be you!

6.      Believe in yourself – be prepared, have faith in yourself and be true to your inner beliefs.

7.      Make everyday count – give 100% to everything you do.

8.      Act now – deal with situations as they arise. Don’t leave things to fester.

9.      Keep a positive attitude – do not tolerate negativity or poor attitudes. Stay focused on steering a buoyant ship!

10.  Stay healthy – sleep, eat and exercise well. It has a direct impact on your mental wellbeing as well as your body.

 

Happy Christmas everyone and here’s to a New Year full of hope!

 

Image credit Mararie under CC licence - not modified.

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An invaluable service - Dental Elite

An invaluable service - Dental Elite

We all have the dream of owning our own practice, however the thought of making that transition is often frightening.
 

My first thought was, what can I afford? The only loan I’d ever got was for my home, and that was in the days banks were handing out money to anyone and everyone. This is where Dental Elite (DE) Finance, and in particular Becki, were invaluable. Long before I found the right practice, Becki had taken all the relevant information from me and let me know what I could realistically expect to get from the banks given my circumstances. This really narrowed down my search criteria, allowing me to stop wasting time on those practices that were out of my reach.

This was to be my first acquisition, for a reasonably sized practice in South Yorkshire with a healthy NHS contract. Before committing, DE Finance ran through all the figures again, ensuring the purchase was financially viable, before we moved forward.

In between dealing with the sellers and our respective solicitors, as well as having to turn up to work each day, I didn’t have time for much else. In DE Finance I felt like I had a PA, with Becki contacting all the major banks (and some I’d never heard of) on my behalf, leaving me to get on with other things. I left Becki to fight my corner as to why they should lend someone who has never run a business, let alone a dental practice, such a large sum of money. This I thought was going to be the most stressful part of the purchase, but it turned out to be the easiest.

Becki had influential contacts in all the right places, and offers from the banks quickly came rolling in. More importantly, because Becki was involved, the banks knew they would be competing against each other, and subsequently provided offers at fantastic rates. I certainly didn’t have time to approach all these banks myself, nor would I have received the rates I did.

Things didn’t end here however. Becki followed the process right through to completion and beyond. She was always there when I needed to contact her, even out of work hours. When the bank was labouring with the sale at times, she would intervene on my behalf and get her contact to push things along. It was great just being able to pick up the phone when I wasn’t sure about something, to receive some expert guidance, or even just some much needed reassurance.

Would I recommend Becki? Absolutely, without hesitation. I know who the first person I ring will be when I’m ready to make my next acquisition, even if it’s not a dental practice. And what did this fantastic service cost me? Nothing, not a penny!

Thank you Becki for making this whole process so easy for me.

- Imran Ahmed

 

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Postgraduate Bursary Award - Closes 31st December, Hurry!

bPostgraduate Bursary Award - Closes 31st December, Hurry!

Following the success of the 2015 Bursary Awards, the Association of Dental Groups (ADG) would like to announce that application for the 2016 Postgraduate Bursary Award is now open.

 

Dental professionals interested in entering the Postgraduate Award should submit their project, focusing on either improving access for disadvantaged people or building awareness of oral cancer and the need for early diagnosis.

 

The proposed project must be implemented during 2015-16 and the winning applicant will receive £5,000, made up of £2,500 for the dentist and a further £2,500 to be used in support of the delivery of the project.

 

The winners of the 2015 ADG Postgraduate Bursary Award were Orna Ni Choileain and Niall McGoldrick for their project ­­­­­­­­Let’s Talk About Mouth Cancer.

 

On winning the Bursary, Orna said: “When I found out we won the Bursary, I had the perfect mixture of shock and excitement. It feels like a great achievement to have our work setting up the 'Let's Talk About Mouth Cancer’ charity recognised by other professionals on a national level. It's a sign of confidence for us and the wider team that all the work we have been doing over the last year has been worthwhile.”

 

For more information about the ADG visit www.dentalgroups.co.uk

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'Tis the season ...

'Tis the season ...

...to be Jolly, fah-la-la-la-la,la-lah-lah-lahhh

 

It is the season of Goodwill to all Men [and Women of course]. Too much food, a touch too much liquid spirit, and comfy armchair beckon for many, while Granny sups the sherry.

It is a time of year to reconnect with family, and let loose the strings of attachment with dentistry.

It has been quite a year.  If anyone has recently been affected by the extreme weather and flooding, you will have our deepest sympathy and best wishes.

 

TWTYTW

 

We have a new CDO[NHS England]  who seems to have big dreams. While her grip on reality is yet to be proven, her grip on mission creep is patently in doubt too as the New NHS Contract slides back another year.  When does evidence seeking become procrastination I wonder? 

 

Let’s not forget to toast the former CDO [NHS England] spinning the revolving door of Corporate employment. A nice little earner, some might cynically say; I could not possibly comment.  For sure, the numbers-merchants all seem in agreement.  Corporate Dentistry is a House of Cards just waiting for the crutches to be kicked away.

 

What about our soon-to-be ex-Chief Executive Officer of that great body in Wimpole Street.  I wonder how many cards of goodwill she really will receive? Goodwill to Dental Colleagues has been the byword on her watch… NOT!

 

And then of course our congratulations to the newly elected members of the BDAs Principal Executive Committee.  Is it me or is a vote of 1900 on a membership of 18000 a 10% turnout?  Is a 10% turnout the sign of a well engaged campaign and a profession with fire in their belly?  Hmmm, thought as much. 

 

So there is much to be done and as ever so little time to do it. 

 

Crystal balls, anyone?

 

Maybe 2016 will be the year that as a profession of 100,000 like-minded souls we unite into one influential body, instead of Nurses here, Therapists there, Dental Technicians under the table, Dentists arguing and never agreeing, LDCs bangin’ on to no avail, the BDA in constant denial and the FGDP worrying about ‘stuff’.  No wonder the Government can run rings around us all.

 

To you all, I bid you a Happy Christmas and an Utterly-Butterly Joyful New Year.

 

In the South, we Sassenachs favour the early celebration. North of the border of course, our Scots colleagues will be awaiting the excesses of Hogmanay.  To our non-Christian colleagues, we know you will join us in celebration in whatever way suits.

 

But wait:

 

What is this with Santa’s paw prints all over it? A PSA Report I see? Now this is a Festive card of gargantuan size.

 

Ladies and gentlemen of the Dental Profession, now you know why the Chief Executive Officer and Registrar of the GDC has pulled the Ejection Seat firing handle and is departing.

 

A report on the investigation into the General Dental Council’s handling of a whistleblower’s disclosure about the Investigating Committee 21 December 2015

 

This is a 270 Page report on the investigation into the General Dental Council’s handling of a whistleblower’s disclosure about the Investigating Committee dated 21 December 2015, but from events through the previous 3 years.

My goodness me. I take it all back.  The PSA do have teeth, they are most certainly sharp and their Regulatory jaws have closed around the neck of the GDC.

 

Close typed pages of absolute dynamite. Evidence based critical analysis of what the GDC did with your ARF that led to it having to be increased...A pantomime with an unbelievable plot by any other description.

 

Please do go read it Ladies and Gentlemen.  2016 may indeed be “The Year”

 

I also urge you to read it in the context of Dr Alyson Lockyer's brave attempt to drive this agenda in 2011 with the PSA in their report entitled An investigation into concerns raised by the former Chair of the General Dental Council Advice to the Department of Health February 2013

Many would say  she was right all along. How sad it has taken this long to prove it

 

Broadsword calling Billy Boy  …  Broadsword calling Billy Boy

 

Dr Moyes? Are you reading this…  You know what you should do.  Prove to us that you are the honourable and ethical Gentleman we believe you to be.

As should the whole Council, given the implications of poor oversight.

 

Pull up the table, You get the mulled wine, I’ll get the nibbles. Just feast on these nuggets of you will.

 

  • 6. Overall conclusions
  • What was the outcome of the failings in the Investigating Committee processes and support during 2013?
  • 6.1 The outcome was that the independence (and perceptions about the independence) of the GDC’s Investigating Committee were jeopardised by various practices that were designed to improve the quality and consistency of the Investigating Committee’s decision making, but which at the same time sought to restrict the Committee’s autonomy to an extent that infringed upon the appropriate separation of powers within a regulator. This could have had very serious implications for the GDC in terms of the robustness of decision making, potential judicial review actions and the consequent reputational damage. Those practices also had serious implications for the culture that developed in the Investigating Committee Secretariat, which in turn affected the working relationships between some Investigating Committee members and the Secretariat team.
  • 6.2  “   Changes had been made to the reasoning of Investigating Committee decision documents after the event and without appropriate authorisation … “
  • 6.14 …”The Chief Executive is ultimately accountable for the decisions taken about the level of information disclosed to the GDC’s committees and the Council, staff and GDC associates. The Chief Executive also had several opportunities to identify the seriousness of the problems emerging, even if they were not properly brought to their attention.”

 

And finally

Sub note 257, with my highlighting of the PSA final words in the Report. Hah!  Pass that English Sparkling Wine, dear - the one that knocks spots off Champagne ...

 

Here's to 2016 dear colleagues.

 

  • 257 We note that the Chief Executive has responded to our conclusion by stating that they believe that they acted appropriately and quickly in response to each risk as soon as it became apparent, and that they reported fairly and fully to the Audit/Audit and Risk Committee and the Council. The Chief Executive has stated to us that their view is that they have responded to each of the “shocks” that have occurred to the GDC with honesty and transparency and by taking appropriate action. In response to seeing a draft of this report the GDC has said that the Chief Executive’s reliance upon the former Director of Regulation was reasonable, has noted that the Authority’s 2012/13 performance review of the GDC did not identify problems relating to the Investigating Committee, and has referred to the fact that no complaints had been made by the Investigating Committee members, and has drawn the conclusion that the Chief Executive could not have had visibility of the problems emerging in these circumstances.
  • We [The PSA] do not agree

 

 

 

Try this by the way

http://www.englishorganicwine.co.uk/products/pinot-noir-chardonnay-2013-organic

 

Happy Christmas to one and all, and especially all our colleagues trying to level the GDC Playing Field.

 

 

 

 

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The Latest Research In The Battle Against Oral Cancer- Association of Dental Groups

The Latest Research In The Battle Against Oral Cancer- Association of Dental Groups

The Mouth Cancer Action Month campaign – which was launched by the British Dental Health Foundation and supported by the Association of Dental Groups – may have finished for another year, but there is no doubt that the fight against mouth cancer must go on. Much has been learnt about the disease over recent years, especially in regards to triggers and causes, but over the last year in particular, new research has come to light.

One study, for instance, suggests that there could be a complex network of chemical, viral and (epi)genetic factors that link to the occurrence of oral carcinogenesis.[i] While the factors that trigger this process and the metastasis of oral cancer have not been clarified in this study, the mere suggestion that immune reactions following viral infections may cross-react with tumour suppressor action proteins to create oral cancer could be ground breaking.

Another element that is currently being researched at some length could be crucial to diagnosis, is the mutation of the TP53 gene. Normally, the protein produced by this gene – known as p53 – works to prevent cells from increasing in size. But as studies of the gene show, changes can cause oral squamous cell carcinoma to develop[ii] – which accounts for more than 90% of oral cancers.[iii] Testing for changes to p53 could serve as a prognostic marker, thereby increasing the chances of early detection.

In terms of effective diagnosis, it has also been suggested in research conducted earlier this year, that salivary genomic and proteomic biomarkers could potentially be a successful – and less invasive – approach to testing for oral cancer.[iv] This could prove very beneficial to diagnosis if this were to develop. In the meantime, it is crucial that you continue to screen for oral cancer and invite your patients for regular check-ups.

What still needs to be done, however, is to convince the government that oral cancer is as important as other healthcare issues. That’s not to say that ministers don’t care about oral cancer – for Sir Paul Beresford MP seemed sincerely passionate about the matter at the Mouth Cancer Action Month launch – but it occasionally appears as if other concerns, such as smoking and obesity, take precedence.

It goes without saying that you are all aware of mouth cancer and the health risks that late diagnosis poses. But by keeping up to date with the latest research, maintaining constant vigilance with screenings and treatment pathways and by urging government officials to take greater action, you can keep on top of oral cancer. To find out more, please contact the ADG or British Dental Health Foundation.

 

To donate or for more information visit www.dentalgroups.co.uk or www.dentalhealth.org



[i] Lucchese A. Viruses and Oral Cancer: Crossreactivity as a Potential Link. Anticancer Agents Med Chem. 2015; 15(10): 1224-9. Accessed online November 2015 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26179264

[ii] Khan H, Gupta S, Husain N, Misra S, Negi MPS, Jamal N, Ghatak A. Correlation between expressions of Cyclin-D1, EGFR and p53 with chemoradiation response in patients of locally advanced oral squamous cell carcinoma. Volume 3, June 2015, Pages 11-17. Accessed online November 2015 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2214647414000300

[iii]Markopoulos AK, Michailidou EZ, Tzimagiorgis G. Salivary

markers for oral cancer detection. Open Dent J 2010;4:172-8.

[iv] Bano S, David MP, Indira AP. Salivary Biomarkers for Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma: An Overview. Vol 1, Issue 8, January 2015. Accessed online November 2015 http://www.ijsscr.com/sites/default/files/articles/IJSS-CR_1(8)_RA02.pdf

 

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Calling all dental professionals! Have your say...

Calling all dental professionals! Have your say...

The third NHS Confidence Monitor survey is now live for all dental professionals to share their views. Its aim is to provide a better understanding of the profession’s confidence levels in NHS dentistry.

 

The preceding NHS Confidence Monitor, conducted in May and June of 2015, solicited over 300 responses from dentists across the UK. To reflect the profession’s growing interest in the NHS Confidence Monitor, this latest survey has been opened up to enable all members of the dental team to share their thoughts, providing a deeper and wider understanding of the whole profession’s perception of NHS dentistry.

 

As previously, the survey will monitor the profession’s confidence in:

•               The future of NHS dentistry as a whole

•               Future career prospects

•               Remuneration levels

•               Getting the balance of treatment versus prevention within the NHS right

•               The ability of the team to work effectively within the NHS

•               Whether patients will be happy with level of care provided.

 

In addition to widened access, the survey has increased in scope to explore a number of new topics. Those taking part are invited to respond to questions concerning their proposed age of retirement to gauge the possibility of a staffing crisis in the future, and whether they would feel happy encouraging a family member or friend to pursue a career in dentistry.

 

‘Finding out about team members’ retirement plans should offer an interesting insight into whether there might be a Provider crisis when it comes to asking dentists to sign up to a reformed NHS contract. In addition, asking whether one might encourage a family member or friend to pursue a career in dentistry really brings the overall mood of the profession into focus,’ remarked Andrew Lockhart-Mirams, a specialist in business advice and structures in healthcare and co-founder of Lockharts Solicitors.

 

Also commenting on the survey, Judith Husband, who sits on the BDA’s Principal Executive Committee, said: ‘I think it is very important to understand the landscape of what is going on. That is why I believe the ongoing, enhanced NHS Confidence Monitor survey is so important and I would urge team members to have their say.

 

‘No one wants to stop positive progress – but, from the Government’s perspective, this should be in the context of open and honest debate and a willingness to listen to what we, as a profession, have to say. This is a great opportunity to help facilitate that dialogue.’

 

To take part in the latest NHS Confidence Monitor and share your thoughts, please visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PracticePlanNHSConfidencemonitor3 before the closing date of 31st January 2016. The survey should take approximately three minutes of your time.

 

Once the results of the latest survey have been independently verified, they will be presented to an ‘Insights Panel’ made up of key opinion leaders and experts from the dental profession who will explore and debate their significance and their implications for the future of NHS Dentistry. The panel’s findings will then be shared with dental professionals throughout the UK.

 

For detailed results from the last two surveys, as well as to gain access to the discussions from our previous Insights Panel meetings and interviews with our panel members, visit www.nhsdentistryinsights.co.uk.

 

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Effective Practice Management Systems - The Way Forward for Commercial Streamlining in 2016.

Effective Practice Management Systems - The Way Forward for Commercial Streamlining in 2016.

Ryszard Jurowski is Managing Director at Systems for Dentists, a contributing author and life-long system development guru with a clear and transparent interest in shaping the future of systems management efficiencies and capability for the benefit of the UK dentistry industry.

And if progressing the vision for the development of your Practice, future proofing practice management through systems capability, increasing productivity, eradicating wastage, improving workflows and optimising financial and manpower resources in 2016 is on your agenda, then read on, as you’ll be excited by the latest thinking for streamlining your Practice as a means of improving your bottom line in the coming year.

Of course, you will have a capable Practice Manager in post. Faithful, trustworthy – and without doubt, a can’t do without right hand help and more than worthy of their weight in gold as they oversee your brilliant Practice team, navigate and keep on an even keel the smooth ebb and flow of Practice operations, deal with the hum drum of patient appointment demands whilst balancing all operational aspects of your business - not to mention staff resourcing and payroll needs.

All the while of course, you maintain the strategic helicopter view of your Practice, keep growth and commercial development on track against the underpinning vision and business model you set on course when you founded and invested in your Practice. And of course, all this, whilst still balancing the demands of a busy surgery treatment timetable and nurturing the complex demands of the plethora of patients in your care.

As a successful professional in the dentistry field, moving at a dynamic pace on a daily basis, balancing the needs of work and life can often mean that there is little to no time for thinking of ways to further develop and contemplate how to increase your bottom line and drive up even greater efficiencies for your Practice.

But that’s really where taking essential time out this New Year to consider the benefits of investing in proven and well developed practice management software based on solid development foundations can make a real and sustainable long term difference to the bottom line and future success of your business.

And where software development teams in the industry are taking a real lead and getting things right are where technical expertise and profound industry knowledge backed by years of dental market understanding - often a minimum of at least 2-3 decades, are being used to deliver in a technological lead. And it’s by and large where a common sense approach meets powerful technological solutions to drive up practice management efficiencies are adding real value added and delivering time and money savings on the bottom line to the industry.

And the companies who are getting it right are delivering efficiencies at the touch of a button not only via the robust and tested software interfaces they provide to users (and even the most efficient of Practice Managers are inclined to agree)  but also through the useful functionality of their systems features. Consider for instance the powerful applications practice management systems on the market are offering to streamline Dental Practices; real time online appointments, SMS reminders, patient imaging, periodontal charting, clinical notes recording, on line backups, postcode lookups, to name but a few….

 

And that’s not all, you’ll find with careful research that to generate time and money savings and eliminate the paper mountains created by the mandatory paper chase still inherent in many practices, the creation and capture of digital signatures will be a radical and welcome solution accessible in the marketplace from those software developers who are leading the way in creating the paperless office.

To summarise, taking time out  in 2016, maybe even over part of one sacred forthcoming weekend day to reflect on how you can further streamline your Practice in the new year by identifying and investing in improved practice management systems capability could in fact be time very well spent out of your valuable “me” or family time on the home front.

As a word of advice, factor in systems developed by a generation or family business with a longstanding background of Dentists if you can find it, as for sure, they will understand what practitioners truly need and have thought carefully within their product development processes of the systems requirements that will be needed to pivot your Practice forward. Not only that, but they will have developed solutions to improve your patient experience, ensure staff have at their fingertips the automated support they need to eradicate unnecessary manual processes and data recording, and provide automated interventions, in fact they’ll have thought about everything to assist them work at optimum levels and in doing so enrich your staff and patient’s experience.

Systems for Dentists, established for nearly thirty years in the market and provide proven practice management systems solutions.

 

Contact Nathan Ross on 0845 643 2828 for further assistance and a warm and professional welcome.

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Merry Christmas Everybody

Merry Christmas Everybody

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GDPUK in Numbers

At GDPUK.com we love to share stats and numbers. We have created an infographic to show some of the amazing stats produced by the users of our site, we believe the infograph demonstrates how busy and active our community is. Something we are very proud of. Thanks to all the users of the site and to all the advertisers who support and engage with our community. 

 

 

 

If you would like to join GDPUK and participate and engage in the GDPUK forum please follow this link 

If you are looking to reach dentists in the UK and would be interested in advertising on our site in 2016, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., we look forward to hearing from you. 

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all the GDPUK team. 

 

 

 

 

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Cost-benefit analysis ahead of 2016

Cost-benefit analysis ahead of 2016

Cost-benefit analysis ahead of 2016

Louisa Buckingham of Patient Plan Direct explains why practices should consider performing cost-benefit analysis ahead of 2016.

The dental industry continues to become an ever more competitive industry with a generation of tech savvy and business-minded dentists. More than ever, dental practices are looking to differentiate themselves, create competitive edge, provide a unique patient experience and embrace digital dentistry all whilst endeavouring to generate healthy profits and deliver the best in patient care.

A cost-benefit analysis is the exercise of evaluating a planned or existing action by determining what net value it will have for your practice. A cost-benefit analysis finds, quantifies, and adds all the positive factors; the benefits. Then it identifies, quantifies, and subtracts all the negatives; the costs. Should the benefits derived from the action outweigh the costs of implementing that action, then the action should be taken and vice versa.

As practices increasingly seek to cut costs and improve productivity and care, cost-benefit analysis has become a valuable tool for evaluating a wide range of business decisions and opportunities for dental practices; the prospect of a move away from the NHS, which consumables supplier to work with, which plan provider to work with in administering and developing the practice’s private dental plans.  

When undertaking this review you should ask yourself questions such as; what value does this opportunity/action represent? What other alternatives do I have and how do they compare? When did I last review this area of my business?

Take for example, dental plan administration. It’s alarming how many dental practices aren’t aware of the fees they pay to their plan provider and nor do many assess what value these fees represent.

Many plan providers profess to offer a range of additional ‘non-plan’ related services, hospitality and support alongside core plan administration. This ‘optional’ access to additional elements of service aside from plan development is rolled in to the fee structures charged by some plan providers. Many practices don’t actually utilise these additional elements, effectively paying for something they don’t fully leverage and therefore not seeing value.

When performing a cost-benefit analysis in relation to working with a plan provider you should make a list of what the provider delivers; the benefits. For example; How many times a year do you see your representative? Do you fully utilise additional services such as regulatory advice, ‘key client’ forums, or clinical events? This should then be compared to the costs of the service and also weighed up against other provider propositions in the market.

If you already work with a dental plan provider, the Patient Plan Direct business development team can help your practice conduct a cost-benefit analysis, a very useful technique you may then consider to assess and analyse other areas of your business.

 


Patient Plan Direct is a dental payment plan provider working with practices across the UK, recognised for its cost effective (£1 per patient per month) approach to support and administration, as well as its innovative web-based management platform. Patient Plan Direct support practice with; New payment plan launches, NHS to Private conversions and Plan provider transfers

Tel: 08448486888

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Web: www.patientplandirect.co.uk

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3866 Hits
DEC
17
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What’s in your Christmas coffee? Your seasonal favourite could be less than merry for your teeth

What’s in your Christmas coffee? Your seasonal favourite could be less than merry for your teeth
 
 
After fighting your way through hordes of Christmas shoppers with what feels like a metric ton of Christmas presents, you’d be forgiven for treating yourself to a well-earned soothing coffee in your local high street coffee shop. But what happens when those inviting speciality hot drinks become a regular habit over the Christmas season?

A recent video from Denplan, the UK’s leading dental payment plan provider, has highlighted the staggering sugar content of festive drinks found in many of the popular high street coffee chains – including a specialist hot chocolate that contains up to 24 teaspoons of sugar. If these drinks are accompanied by cakes or other sweet treats, the amount of sugar consumed can double.

 

 

“While most people will probably be aware that their festive drink contains some levels of sugar, they might not be aware of the sheer quantity,” says Henry Clover, Deputy Chief Dental Officer at Denplan. “Many of the festive coffees, lattes and hot chocolates that we looked at across a range of high street coffee chains contained, on average, around 12 to 18 teaspoons of sugar in their largest portion sizes. One caramel fudge hot chocolate from a popular coffee chain even contained a shocking 24 teaspoons of sugar – that’s the equivalent to around two and a half cans of cola.

“As a one-off treat, a sugary festive drink won’t do you any harm, but if you get into the habit of frequently consuming high levels of sugar, this may cause tooth decay. Every time we eat or drink something sugary, bacteria in our mouths produce acids that can cause tooth decay. A high sugar diet is also linked to other health problems such as obesity and diabetes.”

The vast amounts of sugar found in high street coffee chain beverages is especially concerning in light of guidelines from the World Health Organisation published earlier this year*. The WHO suggests that adults should consume no more than 12 teaspoons of ‘free’ sugars a day, but should really be aiming for six. ‘Free’ sugars refer to sugar that is added to foods and drinks, as well as things like honey and fruit juices.

In addition, research conducted earlier this year by YouGov on behalf Denplan** also suggests that consumers would welcome knowing more about the levels of sugar found in their food and drinks, and would even like to see an overall reduction in sugar content. The survey revealed that only a third of UK adults (35%) think that retailers and food companies do enough to inform them of how much sugar is in food and drinks. Of those who disagreed that retailers and food companies do enough, 73% said retailers and food companies should reduce the overall sugar content in food and drinks.

So what are the healthier options for a festive beverage this Christmas?

“It’s certainly not all doom and gloom for the Yuletide season – it’s all about being informed and enjoying things in moderation,” says Henry. “Opting for a peppermint tea or an Americano coffee or plain latte with sugar-free syrup can warm you up without the added sugar.

“If you do decide to sample a speciality coffee during the festive period, make sure you’re aware of the sugar content before you order, and try to drink this as part of a balanced meal.”

 


 

*Source: World Health Organization, March 2015 http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2015/sugar-guideline/en/

**Denplan/YouGov Survey February 2015. The survey was carried out online. Total sample size was 5,315 adults.

About Denplan

Denplan is the UK’s leading dental payment plan specialist, with more than 6,500 member dentists nationwide caring for approximately 1.7 million registered patients. Established in 1986 by two dentists who pioneered the concept of dental payment plans, Denplan has been at the heart of dental care for nearly 30 years and today the company is owned by Simplyhealth. Denplan has a wide range of dental plans for adults and children, enabling

patients to budget for their private dental care by spreading the cost through a fixed monthly fee. We support regular attendance and preventive care, reducing the need for clinical intervention and helping patients to maintain healthy teeth and gums for life. For further information visit www.denplan.co.uk. For oral health tips and advice visit www.myteeth.co.uk. Patient enquiries telephone: 0800 401 402   Dentist enquiries telephone: 0800 328 3223
 

·         Denplan Care: all routine and restorative care + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover

·         Denplan Essentials: routine care only + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover

·         Plans for Children: routine and other agreed care + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover

·         Membership Plan: registered with the dentist + worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover

·         Denplan Emergency: worldwide dental injury and dental emergency cover only

·         Company Dental Plans: company funded, voluntary and flexible benefit schemes
 

Denplan also provides a range of professional services for its member dentists and their practice teams, including the Denplan Quality Programme, Denplan Excel Accreditation Programme and Denplan Training, plus regulatory advice, business and marketing consultancy services and networking opportunities.

For more information about Denplan:

Sara Elliott

Denplan Press Office

Tel: 01962 828 194

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

About Simplyhealth

We have been helping people with their health for over 140 years. Our roots are in the hospital funds set up during the Victorian era to help working people save for their medical care, and we still follow mutual values today. With no shareholders, our profits go back into supporting our customers and healthcare charitable causes, donating over £1 million each year. Last year, we donated £1.4 million.

In 2011, we acquired Denplan Limited, the UK’s leading dental payment plan specialist. Simplyhealth has 1,391 employees based across our offices in Andover, Manchester, Leeds and Denplan in Winchester. We serve our 3.5 million customers through cash plans, dental plans, Denplan and pet health plans. Simplyhealth has Independent Living Centres which provide daily living and mobility products, including powerchairs, mobility scooters and wheelchairs, in Andover, Bristol, Burnham, Droitwich, Kenilworth, Leeds, Northfield, Norwich, Sutton Coldfield, Telford, Willenhall and Wolverhampton.

Simplyhealth is a trading name of Simplyhealth Access, which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

For further information:

http://newsroom.simplyhealth.co.uk/

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9056 Hits
DEC
15
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Davids and Goliaths of Dentistry

Davids and Goliaths of Dentistry

This post was stimulated by my re-reading Malcolm Gladwell’s book “David & Goliath”. In it he examines the underdog in several circumstances and how they have managed to overcome the odds to become victorious.

Initially I was looking to draw analogies between the “corporate” large and chain practices and the small, independent practice. My idea was to show that a good little ‘un can beat a big ‘un every time. The idea grew on me so I have expanded the remit.

Quite often when I listen to owners of small dental practices I am reminded of the children’s ‘swing song’ that starts, “Nobody loves us, everybody hates us, think I’ll go and eat worms”. Certainly when one looks at the plethora of legislation, political interference and change in consumer expectations one can understand this attitude. Yet it is those changes or rather the practices’ response to them that can make success more likely.

Let’s look at the David and Goliath of the title. David was smaller, poorly equipped and had no experience of battle. Goliath on the other hand was battle hardened and massive in terms of both physical size and equipment. But we know the result, one slingshot brought the giant to defeat.

Perhaps with these two protagonists we saw a hint of the first guerrilla war. History shows that a larger organisation doesn’t approve of small groups. Michael Collins and his flying columns had learned lessons from TE Lawrence (of Arabia) whose methods, although successful, were frowned upon by the British authorities.

The Davids of Dentistry are used to being the smaller person, indeed one of the reasons for successful small practices is that the owner will put in hours outside the “9 to 5” for repairs, maintenance and upkeep. These hours are never allocated in year end accounts. The successful Davids are light on their feet, flexible and adaptable, they know their terrain and where they can operate to best advantage.

The Goliaths have capital, resources and are “business savvy”, whatever that means. They can absorb wasted efforts, tolerate inefficiencies of staff and materials and, above all, can take a long view.

The negative for the Davids is that they can get stuck in a rut of reacting to circumstances and their campaigns are short term. Financial survival is usually at the top of their agenda meaning that they tend not to consider a long term strategy. In order to survive they need, in the words of Alastor Moody, constant vigilance, this becomes wearisome with time and contributes to their eventual burn out.

On the downside for Goliaths is their rigidity and lack of conventionality as their bean counter driven businesses seek to impose an external model onto a personal service. A surfeit of management levels and often unsympathetic HR practices mean that their teams operate at less than optimum efficiency.

The important thing for Davids has been to avoid the  temptation to take on the Goliaths at their own game and terrain because they will surely lose. With market changes it becomes more and more difficult in the post Shipman world for David to remain profitable. The battlefield has morphed too, the big armies of Goliath have taken a lot of the easy low ground of the NHS contracts and can use their clout and experience to bid for more.

Davids must choose their battles, battlegrounds and to time their campaigns with care. They need to learn not only from Goliaths’ mistakes but also from their successes and ensure that they are strong where their opponents are weak. In addition they must look at all the Davids in other professions and industries for inspiration.

Can Goliath learn? Of course he can. To my knowledge nobody has devised a franchise operation in Dentistry that reflects the unique elements of the profession, rewards the franchisee and gives them a sense of freedom. Not yet but with imagination it could work if done properly.

The pattern of post-war Britain has been about smaller companies being absorbed by larger ones. Is it possible for the independents to stay small and free of involvement? Perhaps the model for freedom is one of small managed groups of practices? Here much of the tiresome “grunt” work is centralised. It is this work that, in my experience, ultimately leads to owners losing their resilience, their final fatigue and despair. This sees with them reluctantly selling to a Goliath or to another increasingly cash-strapped David to perpetuate the battle. This group model leaves the clinicians and customer facing team members to do what they are good at with support coming from dedicated and probably off site back office.

All wars eventually end with talks and compromise. The challenge for the different Davids is to find someone with whom you can share a philosophy of business and agree a way forward to keep your places on the battlefield of dentistry. This way the strengths, efficiencies and independence of you Davids can be continued.

 

  10445 Hits
10445 Hits
DEC
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Pension Auto-Enrolment; 'We're All In'

Pension Auto-Enrolment; 'We're All In'

In October 2012 a positive duty was placed on all employers to automatically enrol ‘eligible job holders’ in to a qualifying pension scheme. For most Dental Practices the relevant date for complying is likely to be early next year. If your Practice has not been given the relevant date yet, then you should expect notification imminently. A failure to comply with this duty can result in a penalty notice with a fine or enforcement action being taken against you. Enforcement action can consist of inspections being carried out on premises, which is yet another layer of bureaucracy for Dental Practices to comply with.

In this Blog we take a look at who is eligible for auto enrolment; what is a qualifying pension scheme; and what you must do to comply with the auto enrolment requirements. We also explain the continuing duty placed on employers to re-enrol eligible job holders.

Who must comply?

All UK employers must comply with the auto enrolment requirements, even if you employ just one eligible job holder. The only exception to this is if the eligible job holder is already in a qualifying pension scheme.

If you currently do not employ anyone but offer an eligible job holder a position following your relevant date, you will have an obligation to enrol them into a qualifying pension scheme from the start of their contract.  

Who is an Eligible Job Holder?

An eligible job holder is a worker who:

•       Is working under a contract;

•       Aged at least 22 and under State Retirement Age;

•       Earns at least £10,000 (in 2015/2016);

Therefore it’s not just employees who must be enrolled; it is workers, agency staff, apprentices, and could even extend to some self-employed contractors. It will also cover permanent and temporary staff and those on fixed term contracts.

Given this is a relatively new scheme, there is limited legal guidance as to what an eligible job holder, or worker, will be for the purposes of the Pensions Act 2008. However, the definition is similar to that found within the Employment Rights Act 1996. As such, we can look to existing case law to assist with the definition of a ‘worker’ under the new act.

Interestingly, in the case of The Hospital Medical Group Limited v Westwood [2012] EWCA Civ 1005 the Court of Appeal held that a GP working as a self-employed independent contractor for a private clinic was a worker.

Dr Westwood held three positions. He was contracted by the Hospital Medical Group Ltd to perform hair loss surgery for its clients; he was referred to in marketing material as ‘one of our surgeons’. He also had his own medical practice which he worked at, and finally, he had a contract to provide advice on transgender issues with another separate clinic.

When asked to determine whether he was a ‘worker’ at the HMG Ltd, the Court of Appeal held that there is a distinction between those who market their services independently to the world in general and those who are recruited by the principal to work as an integral part of the principal's operations. Whilst there was no requirement for the clinic to provide work and for Dr Westwood to accept it, the HMG Ltd had engaged Dr Westwood because of his skills. The patients were clients of the clinic not Dr Westwood. He was therefore recruited by the principal as an integral part of the principal’s operations. He was therefore considered to be a worker despite the flexibility of his role and the terms of his written contract stating he was a self-employed independent contractor.

The parallels between Dr Westwood’s position and that of most self-employed Associate dentists are clear. As such it seems extremely likely that for the purposes of pension enrolment legislation, Associate dentists will be considered an eligible job holder working under a contract. As such they will need to be included in Practice’s qualifying pension scheme, unless of course they choose to opt out. 

Practices will also need to consider their company structure when considering who is eligible for auto-enrolment. In the case of Clyde & Co LLP and another v van Winklehof [2014] UKSC 32 the Supreme Court held that a member of a Limited Liability Partnership was a ‘worker’ for the purposes of whistleblowing legislation. In this case Ms Bates van Winklehof was an equity partner receiving a profit-related element of remuneration and a guaranteed level of remuneration. Ms Bates van Winklehof made a complaint that a managing director had accepted brides. She was subsequently removed as a partner of Clyde & Co. Ms Bates Van Winklehof alleged this removal was due to a protected disclosure, a claim a worker is entitled to bring.

The Court’s reasoning for finding that Ms Bates van Winklehof was a worker was because she could not market her services for anyone other than Clyde & Co and she was an integral part of their business. 

The result of this judgment means Limited Liability Partnerships will need to enrol their members into a qualifying pension scheme if they meet the other requirements, including the minimum qualifying earnings. If the member received drawings based on the company’s profits there is a question as to whether these would be classed as ‘earnings’. Although the definition of earnings is wide and we would recommend automatically enrolling members in any event to avoid litigation.

The position would be different for partners in a traditional Partnership Agreement, as a partner cannot employ themselves and would therefore not been deemed a worker.

As most Dental Practices are Limited companies, it is worth bearing in mind that a Director of a company is a worker only if he is also employed by the company under a contract of employment and there is at least one other person employed by the same company under a contract of employment.

Exceptions

There are some exceptions to the requirement to auto enrolling eligible job holders and these are:

•       Job holders in their notice period within six weeks of the enrolment date;

•       Job holders who have cancelled their membership after being contractually enrolled;

•       Job holders who are receiving a benefit from a lifetime allowance;

•       Job holders who have received a winding up lump sum.

What is a Qualifying Pension Scheme?

A qualifying pension scheme is an occupational or personal pension scheme or a registered pension scheme that satisfies the quality requirements. You should talk to your current or proposed pension provider to get advice on this or you can find out further information here.

The Government’s ‘NEST’ scheme is an automatic enrolment scheme, as is the NHS pension scheme. However, if the eligible job holder is not able to register in the NHS pension scheme then employers are under an obligation to find another qualifying pension scheme for them. An example of this would be someone who has retired, but later decides to return to work. If they are an eligible job holder still they will need to be enrolled into a qualifying pension scheme.  

Non-Eligible Job Holders and Entitled Workers

A non-eligible job holder is:

•       Aged between 16 and 21 or State Retirement Age and 74 and earnings in excess of £10,000; OR

•       Aged between 16 and 74 with earnings between £5,824 and £10,000

Although they are not eligible for auto-enrolment, they must be made aware of the scheme and have the right to opt-in. If a non-eligible job holder opts into a qualify pension scheme the employer must make the minimum pension contribution, which at present is 2% of which the employer pays 1%.

Finally, there are entitled workers who are:

•          Aged between 16  and 74 and has earnings under £5,824

Similarly, these workers must be made aware of the pension scheme and their right to join. However, there is no obligation for an employer to make the minimum contributions for this class of worker.

What Next?

Once a practice owner is informed of their relevant staging date they will need to:

·         Find an appropriate qualifying pension scheme;

·         Provide workers with information about the pension auto enrolment before it takes place; and

·         Enrol any eligible job holder into a qualifying pension scheme if they do not opt out.

To find your relevant staging date, click on this link.

It has been suggested that the process can take up to 12 months to complete so we recommend preparing early.

You need to write to employees within 6 weeks of the staging date. For an example letter to send to eligible job holders and an opt out form, click on this link.

Ongoing Duty

There is an ongoing duty to auto enrol. Even after your staging date has passed you will need to be aware of the following re-enrolment dates:

  • As soon as a job holder becomes eligible the employer must auto enrol. You have one month to make the necessary arrangements;
  • After three years the employer must auto enrol any job holders who previously opted out;
  • If a scheme no longer qualifies as a relevant scheme the employer must enrol the job holder into a relevant scheme.

Employment Protection Safeguards

The Pensions Act contains specific duties for employers to safeguard their workers’ rights in connection with auto-enrolment. It should be noted that these safeguards apply regardless of whether you have reached your staging date yet, and will apply to current and potential job holders. Below is a brief outline of the employment protection safeguards currently in place; a more detailed look at these can be found here.

Prohibited Recruitment Conduct. Employers must not ask questions or make statements as part of the recruitment process that indicate that an individual's application may depend on whether or not they opt out of auto-enrolment. This is enforced by the Pensions Regulator; it does not give rise to a separate claim in the Employment Tribunal by the individual.

Inducements. This is any action which has the sole or main purpose of inducing a job holder to either opt out or leave a pension scheme, or inducing an entitled worker to leave a pension scheme. An example of this would be re-negotiating contractual terms at a lesser rate if the sole or main purpose is to take into account the cost of implementing pension auto-enrolment for that individual. Again this is enforced by the Pensions Regulator; it does not give rise to a separate claim by the individual.

Right not to Suffer a Detriment.  A worker has the right not to suffer a detriment by their employer on the grounds that:

  • any action was taken, or was proposed to be taken, with a view to enforcing a requirement under the auto-enrolment regime in favour of the worker; or
  • the employer was prosecuted for an offence under section 45 of the PA 2008 as a result of action taken for the purpose of enforcing a requirement of the auto-enrolment regime in favour of the worker; or
  • any requirement of the auto-enrolment regime applies to the worker, or will or might apply.

If a worker does suffer a detriment then this will give rise to a claim that can be pursued in the Employment Tribunal. As above, re-negotiating terms could be seen as detrimental treatment. Alternatively, offering new workers lower rates to take into account the direct cost of pension auto-enrolment for that individual could be seen as a detriment.

The situation may be different if pension auto enrolment causes your Practice financial hardship; this could potentially be seen as a valid reason to re-negotiate contracts. However, this will be fact sensitive depending on the circumstances of your business, so if you are planning to take direct action then you should seek specific legal advice.  

Automatic Unfair Dismissal. If you dismiss an employee and the main or principal reason for that dismissal is one of the three points highlighted above under ‘right not to suffer a detriment’ then that dismissal will be deemed automatically unfair and the employee can pursue an Employment Tribunal claim. This right only applies to employees; not workers.

Whistleblowing. Workers are already protected from detrimental treatment as a result of blowing the whistle on their employer. If a worker makes a complaint to the Pensions Regulator and suffers a detriment as a result of such a complaint, then they will have protection under whistleblowing legislation. In the case of a worker this could include their contract being terminated; so whilst they may not have a right to claim unfair dismissal they may have a claim for whistleblowing.

This is yet another financial burden being placed on small businesses. However, given the consequences of not complying with the law, it is important to know what you must do and when; ensuring you are prepared in advance will help take the stress out of implementing pension auto enrolment and help you plan for the future.

Pension Auto Enrolment is a vast area of law and as such this Blog gives an overview of your duties. For more detailed information you can visit the Pensions Regulator website here

  11538 Hits
11538 Hits
DEC
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Dentists-vs-Nurses

Dentists vs Nurses

  10815 Hits
10815 Hits
DEC
06
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NHS Chooses - Dental Reviews

If Stephen King wrote dental reviews

  9138 Hits
9138 Hits
DEC
04
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Enter the Dentists' Provident Survey and win a Speaker!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
At Dentists’ Provident they protect dentists in the UK and Ireland with income protection cover when a dentist can’t work because they are ill or injured. As a mutual, members are at the heart of our organisation.
 
They would like to learn more about your daily habits so they would be grateful if you could spend a few moments completing this survey, for your chance to win one of two Bluetooth® speakers.
 
 
 
Click here for the survey - Dentists' Provident Survey
  9518 Hits
9518 Hits
DEC
03
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“A superior impression material”

A superior impression material

“Currently, I use Impregum Penta for all my indirect restorations and implant work: it is a superior impression material,” says Dr Adyl Asani, principal dentist at TwentyOne Dental in Hove.

 

“I have used a variety of other impression materials over the course of my career, though none of these have provided me with the stability, accuracy and level of detail that Impregum has.

 

“Its ideal flow properties also reproduce the most minor details in my preparations and I avoid drags and airblows. This means I can ensure that the first impression is the last.

 

“I have no hesitation in recommending Impregum Penta impression material to other practitioners who are looking to provide their patients with the best possible indirect restorations.”

 

For more information, call 0845 602 5094 or visit www.3Mespe.co.uk

 

  12862 Hits
12862 Hits
DEC
03
0

Making your Vision a Reality - Stuart Clark

Making your Vision a Reality - Stuart Clark

When undertaking a building project to create a new surgery or practice, the excitement can quickly dissolve into dismay, as the true extent of elements needing consideration come to the fore. Regulations, branding, accessibility, finances; they are just a few of the factors that need to be decided upon. Your true expertise lies within the clinical arena, treating patients, and so it is worthwhile approaching the professionals in the field of design and building of dental surgeries and practices.

Rules, Regulations and Requirements

The minefield of regulations to adhere to can be overwhelming and trip you at the first hurdle. There are requirements to ensure you adhere to stringent clinical welfare needs, such as with cross infection control to keep your patients and staff safe. HTM01-05 is updated periodically so it is best to consult with experts to ensure you follow the latest mandates and are therefore compliant. 

Then there are the non-clinical rules that must be obeyed; especially pertinent if you are considering building a new dental practice. Planning permission can become a necessity depending on your level of development, and this can be time consuming and needs to be applied for via a particular route. There are other building related regulations too. Many dental practices are located in beautiful historic houses, and so the listed building status needs to be assessed to see if relevant.

Design and Branding

Another essential consideration is the design and branding of your practice. As a dentist, you will have a keen eye for detail but are perhaps more used to working at a microscopic level. From the building layout to the dental units used in surgeries it is crucial that every aspect of the practice conforms to a clear notion of what you have to offer, however this can require a lot of time to plan and implement successfully. Working with a reputable design company that utilises the latest technology and has experience in implementing dental surgeries will help you to achieve a practice that has a consistent aesthetic and unifying brand message.

Experts in this field can work with you to understand what your practice’s vision is and how you want your services to be conveyed to existing customers. They can also advise on how to create branding that will attract new patients. Your practice says a lot about you and so you need to get this right to encourage patients to attend.

Motivated Workforce

It’s not just your patients that may need encouragement; you will need to spend as much time ensuring your staff and colleagues have a comfortable environment to work in. It is remarkable, how when people operate in a new, clean and pristine setting it motivates them to work even harder. They feel the need to exude the same level of competency as their environment conveys. It is not only the aesthetics that can be motivating but also the facilities available to members of the team. The staff room can therefore be as important a consideration in the building of a new practice as a surgery, and should be carefully thought through.

Further still, there is the health and safety of your workforce. “Ergonomically friendly” is a term used frequently when discussing a new surgery set-up. A new build project is the ideal chance to maximise the latest technology and design concepts to ensure your team work in the most healthy and comfortable way.

Customer-Centric

The final consideration to discuss is probably the most important to you: the patient. If you are an existing practice that is refurbishing a surgery or even the whole building, you need to ensure there is minimum patient disruption. Good communications with patients and keeping them informed of the progress of the project will help put their minds at ease and further engage their interest in the practice. If you are unable to proceed with their treatment due to the building work, then alternative arrangements need to be made.

The new surgery and practice should ensure accessibility for all patients and create a comfortable, peaceful environment, especially for those that are more nervous of a dental visit. The décor and design can assist with this, such as the colours used, and the layout of surgeries to the waiting room.

With you all the way

There is so much to contemplate when embarking on a new practice, new surgery, rebuild or redesign that it’s impossible to know where to begin. By turning to the experts at Clark Dental you will have a bespoke design and build solution tailored to your specific needs. They help take care of every aspect; from that initial discussion right through to completion, when you open your new door ready for the first patient to walk through.

 

For more information call Clark Dental on 01268 733 146, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.clarkdental.co.uk

 

  3630 Hits
3630 Hits
DEC
03
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The Pressures of the Festive Season

The Pressures of the Festive Season

Rushing around buying gifts, planning and shopping for Christmas menus, absorbing additional expenditure, entertaining friends and family, decorating the house and making sure everyone has a great time are all stresses of the festive season. Indeed according to a recent survey, 14% of Brits feel more under pressure than ever to have the perfect Christmas.[1]
 

Another ‘pressure point’ is the works’ Christmas party. This event is the highlight in the annual calendar for many where they are able to enjoy mingling with colleagues in a relaxed environment. However, it can be a time of anxiety for some individuals because although they can reveal more of their personality at the Christmas bash, out of their usual professional role, they worry more about their appearance. According to a survey commissioned by The Clothes Show Live, 63% of women start thinking and researching their Christmas outfit three months in advance.[2]
 

For a lot of people, meeting and interacting with others, attending Christmas parties and getting up close and personal are what nightmares are made of. Many have social anxieties and suffer from low self esteem, but with 25% of the population experiencing bad breath at some point in their lives, chatting up their latest crush or sharing a kiss under the mistletoe is out of the question for some individuals.
 

Oral malodour is a very personal problem and remains a social stigma that can influence an individual’s confidence and well-being considerably.  Unfortunately, with everything else to manage and consider, many people are more likely than ever to forget about their oral health over the festive season. Dashing around the shops, visiting friends and relatives and completing all the additional tasks associated with Christmas may keep them active, but they can become dehydrated and the saliva that helps to wash away bacteria becomes depleted. Additionally, over Christmas and New Year we are all subjected to an array of tempting food and drink that we may normally avoid, but grazing on sugary, fatty, rich foods as well as an increase in alcohol consumption can wreak havoc on the health of the oral cavity as well as the breath.

 

As well as advising patients to stay properly hydrated, dental professionals can help patients to remain healthy and confident with good oral health instructions, including the use of a daily deodorising mouth rinse and recommending a chewing a sugar free gum after eating. CB12 has developed a mouth rinse that can be used in the morning to prevent unpleasant breath for up to 12 hours, which is great news for patients during the festive season.

 

For more information about CB12 and how it could benefit your patients, please visit www.cb12.com

 


[1] Survey of 2000 people conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Tesco plc. http://www.tescoplc.com/index.asp?pageid=17&newsid=1104 [Accessed 25th August 2015]

[2] 13 DAYS TO GET READY FOR CHRISTMAS PARTY; Women spend 312 hours preparing biggest bash. (n.d.) >The Free Library. (2014). fromhttp://www.thefreelibrary.com/13+DAYS+TO+GET+READY+FOR+CHRISTMAS+PARTY%3b+Women+spend+312+hours...-a0213350488 [Accessed 25thAugust 2015]

 

 

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Behind the headlines – a review of dentistry in the press in 2015

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Practice Plan presents a round-up of news items published in the general media on dentistry in 2015, offering insight into the public’s perception of both NHS and private dentistry.

The dental news year kicked off with many print and online news outlets detailing the results of a Which? report, which found that dentists were not being sufficiently transparent with their treatment fees. What seemed most obvious about the results was that people were confused. For example, 40% said they were not clear about what treatments they were entitled to on the NHS. 
 
These findings were somewhat unsurprising given, as Mick Armstrong, the chairman of the British Dental Association (BDA), was quoted as saying in a BDA press release: ‘Unfortunately the rules determined by government have proved a recipe for confusion. Neither the NHS contract nor what the NHS will pay for is clear enough. It's a system that is failing patients and practitioners alike.’
 
‘In the narrow window available in a time-pressed NHS, a dentist must explain not just the technical details of clinical treatment options, but also the workings of the payment system and where the NHS and private treatment cross-over.’
 
‘With such a muddled set of arrangements, the system almost sets up the dentists working in it to fail.’
 
 Building on this, in February The Scotsman, among other media sources, informed us that private dentist charges were akin to a postcode lottery, according to a survey by WhatClinic.com. Putting a positive spin on what was essentially negative PR for private dentists up and down the UK, Emily Ross, director of WhatClinic.com, suggested there were ‘huge savings’ to be made if patients were willing to shop around.
 
 
Springtime reports
 
Come March, the name Desmond D'Mello hit the headlines, with the BBC reporting that five people treated by the dentist, who was investigated for poor hygiene, had tested positive for hepatitis C. This was the result of the largest ever patient recall in NHS history, involving 22,000 people. As the resulting BDA statement quite rightly indicated: ‘Dentists across the UK are setting high standards, and any exceptions are both regrettable and rare’, but perhaps the damage had already been done in terms of public perception.
  
April saw the publication of the results of a Freedom of Information request made to the NHS Business Services Authority about the pensionable pay of dentists who perform NHS dentistry. The Independent shared with its readers that: ‘The pay of the top five NHS dentists has been revealed to be nearly five times the Prime Minister's £142,000 pay packet.’ Clearly there is more to this report but, alas, the dental professionals’ side of the story was not shared. 
 
May brought with it headlines that everyone scared of the dentist could relate to – a woman apparently used superglue to stick her teeth back in as she was too afraid to make an appointment to have the situation treated appropriately. The Mirror reported that ultimately 11 teeth had to be removed and implants placed. 

 
Summer highlights
 
This patient’s story was subsequently covered in June in the BBC documentary, The truth about your teeth. On it, she said: ‘Wonderful, isn’t it? I feel amazing and there are no hands over my mouth or embarrassment and the difference people have said in me, noticed in me, my friends, things like that, they’re just like, oh my God, you’re more outgoing.’ This was a great outcome for the patient but as it was clear that the treatment was provided privately, it left some wondering if NHS dentistry was private dentistry’s poor, frightening relation.
 
Despite this report, on the whole The truth about your teeth presented a relatively positive view of dentistry, including the capability of dentistry to transform lives for the better, as well as the clinical and interpersonal skills of those who performed the treatment shown.
 
Then, on 16 June, The Daily Mail came up with the shocking headline of: ‘How greedy dentists are fleecing families: Investigation reveals that they hide prices, block NHS treatment and needlessly pull out teeth’. Despite this most unfortunate headline firmly placing blame at the dental practice’s door, the article itself did impart some semblance of sense for those who read beyond the attention-grabbing introduction, highlighting the access problem dogging NHS dentistry. This article was followed up the next day in the same newspaper, in the form of an opinion piece written by Sarah Vine, who criticised the NHS system rather than dentists. 
 
Balancing the sensationalism, Mick Armstrong said: ‘These arbitrary targets have proved a real obstacle for new NHS patients. Many dentists would like to see more patients, but this is impossible within rigid contracts. For far too long oral health has been left out of the health debate and this new evidence provides fresh impetus for government to reassess its agenda.’
 
July saw The Guardian highlighting the suggested link between oral health and systemic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Carrying that all-important message that ‘…twice-daily brushing with a fluoride toothpaste is the best route to healthy teeth and gums, combined with regular trips to the dentist’, this was certainly a positive story for the dental profession and the public alike.
 
In August, Guardian Weekly asked: ‘Why does going to the dentist feel like a trip back in time to the stone age?’ Linking in to what appears to be a common misconception, author Carloyn Johnson explored why this view continues to dog the dental profession, investigating whether it is the result a public relations problem. After all, dentistry has moved on in leaps and bounds; yet, as Denis Kinane, Dean of the Dental School at the University of Pennsylvania, said in the piece: ‘This kind of cleaning that means someone has got to spend time scraping every tooth is laborious and antiquated but we’re working on that right now.’ 
 
Also in August, The Daily Mail and other news outlets picked up on new figures revealing that every week in the UK, 500 children aged between five to nine years old are admitted to hospital as a result of tooth-related problems. The paper also reported that experts considered the problem was likely to get worse, because access to a dentist is a growing problem. 
 
Placing the blame firmly in the lap of the Conservative party, Professor Nigel Hunt, Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons, was quoted as saying: ‘This data reveals a decade of inertia in access to dentistry. It's appalling that tooth decay remains the most common reason why five-to-nine-year-olds are admitted to hospital – in some cases for multiple tooth extractions under general anaesthetic – despite tooth decay being almost entirely preventable. Visiting the dentist regularly is crucial in providing rapid diagnosis and treatment to prevent both children and adults from being hospitalised due to tooth decay. The new Government needs to urgently review why access is not improving and launch a national campaign to stress the importance of seeing a dentist.'
 
It would be remiss to produce an article on dental news in 2015 without touching upon Cecil the lion and US dentist Walter Palmer, since it took up so many column inches over the summer. One man’s pursuit of big game, which had nothing to do with dentistry, suddenly demonised the profession in a most unfair and unfortunate way. 
 
What this has the ability to teach all of us, as reported by The Huffington Post, is that the importance of public relations should not be underestimated: ‘….it used to be said that you shouldn't say something you wouldn't want reported in The Times tomorrow. Today, the danger is much greater. Walter Palmer damaged his own livelihood because of an inability to understand the importance of online social networks and collective value. Social capital matters. Whether you are an individual or an organisation, your voice online will be heard, and by a greater audience than who you market to offline. Long gone are the days of having complete control of your image and perception. Like Mr Palmer now realises, the power of people is huge and the conversation is two-way.’ 
 
September brought headlines concerning an alleged link between going to the dentist and Alzheimer’s. The Daily Mail blamed the connection on contaminated instruments but failed to cover the fact that dental professionals’ employ stringent infection control protocols. The same article also suggested that severe periodontitis can trigger Alzheimer’s. 
 
In October, thanks again to The Daily Mail, we met Natalya Rosenschein, who wants to be ‘Britain's toughest dentist’. With the dental student reported to ‘juggle teeth-pulling with weightlifting’, it was something of a shame that an opportunity had been missed to use more positive language to boost the profession’s hard work both in the surgery and out of it.
 
 
Looking to the future
 
For dentists looking to the future and trying to decide whether NHS, private or mixed practice holds the key to success for their practice, keeping an eye on public perception can help. Alongside the issues that need be considered to reach an informed conclusion, such as financial viability and strategic direction, there has to be a public desire for what you are planning to offer.   
 
There is no crystal ball that is going to provide dentists with a definitive answer, but with 2015 coming to a close, this year’s news reported in consumer media about dentistry has taught us that despite imparting a considerable amount of negativity – especially if readers don’t get past the mostly sensationalist headlines– dentistry is a topic of interest. It therefore seems that the challenge is to capitalise on this curiosity by considering what this means for your practice’s future.
 
                                                                                                     
 
Practice Plan is the UK’s number one provider of practice-branded dental plans. They have been supporting dentists with NHS conversions for more than 20 years, helping them to evaluate their options and, for those who decide to make the change, guiding them through a safe and successful transition to private practice. So, if you’re thinking about your future and would like some expert advice you can trust, then call 01691 684165 or visit www.practiceplan.co.uk/nhs.
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Trailblazer Management Apprenticeship

Trailblazer Management Apprenticeship

 

Build on your existing skills by gaining all the business knowledge and practical experience you need to be the best dental practice manager you can be.

 

Plus, earn a nationally recognised Level 4 qualification with the ILM Certificate in Leadership and Management.

 

With only 3- 4 classroom-based days, held at Barnet and Southgate College in London, you can even hone your skills while taking next to no time away from your practice.

The exciting two-year programme covers:

 

Human Resources / Patient Care / Clinical / Marketing / Risk Management / Quality Assurance / Finance and The Dental Industry

The next starting dates are:

 

18th March 2016

13th May 2016

1st July 2016

 

 

Take the next step in your career and find out more about the

Trailblazer Management Apprenticeship today.

 

For more information or applications contact Barnet and Southgate College on 0208 266 4333 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Excellent Equipment, Excellent Service

Excellent Equipment, Excellent Service

Wrights, an experienced and independent distributor, was proud to introduce Planmeca and its quality products to its range at the BDIA Dental Showcase 2015.

With a competitive edge in scientific knowledge and a comprehensive understanding of clinical workflows, the products from Planmeca have the potential to put your practice one step ahead of the rest.

Aesthetically pleasing, sophistically designed and outstandingly durable, Planmeca offers quality products including:

·         First class imaging software for all your imaging needs

·         Advanced CAD/CAM solutions

·         A wide range of 3D, 2D, panoramic and intraoral imaging devices

·         Innovative dental units

If you are looking for cutting-edge equipment at excellent prices with an efficient and reliable next day delivery service, the friendly and approachable staff at Wrights can help you, whatever your needs.

Interested? Contact Wrights now and find out what you are missing!

 

For more information contact Wrights on 0800668899 or visit the easy to navigate website www.wright-cottrell.co.uk

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12 top tips for the 12 days of Christmas

 

12 top tips for the 12 days of Christmas

According to charity Addaction, 54% of men and 41% of women are expected to drink over the recommended guidelines at Christmas, and so it is important to raise our patients’ awareness of the increased potential for tooth damage at this time of year.

As we dental professionals know all too well, alcohol is acidic and therefore highly erosive, especially when consumed frequently, in large quantities over an extended period of time. It may also be that the high alcohol intake occasionally causes vomiting, which can exacerbate the damage to the dentition.

To help prevent tooth wear, advise patients to:

1. Drink still water or low fat milk between meals

2. Limit fruit juice to once per day

3. Avoid carbonated drinks

4. Swallow any acidic drinks immediately to reduce contact time with the teeth

5. Use a wide-bore straw to drink acidic drinks to limit the contact time with the teeth

6. Dilute and keep any acidic drinks chilled, as this reduces the damaging low pH potential

7. Rinse the mouth after acidic foods and drinks with water for 15-30 seconds to dilute any remaining acids

8. Snack on cheese or drink some milk following consumption of an acidic beverage

9. Wait at least an hour to brush teeth after consuming any acidic drinks

10. Use a toothpaste that is fluoridated to 1400ppm and low in abrasivity

12. Use a fluoridated mouthwash every day at a different time to tooth brushing, as well as before or after acidic drinks to help limit the erosive potential

12. Chew sugar-free gum, especially that containing xylitol, after drink to help neutralise the acidic environment in the mouth.

 

If you are concerned that any of your patients are showing signs tooth wear, simply visit www.toothwear.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 7486 7180.

 

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Calling all dental professionals – have your say

Calling all dental professionals – have your say

The third NHS Confidence Monitor survey is now live for all dental professionals to share their views. Its aim is to provide a better understanding of the profession’s confidence levels in NHS dentistry.

The preceding NHS Confidence Monitor, conducted in May and June of 2015, solicited over 300 responses from dentists across the UK. To reflect the profession’s growing interest in the NHS Confidence Monitor, this latest survey has been opened up to enable all members of the dental team to share their thoughts, providing a deeper and wider understanding of the whole profession’s perception of NHS dentistry.

As previously, the survey will monitor the profession’s confidence in:

•               The future of NHS dentistry as a whole

•               Future career prospects

•               Remuneration levels

•               Getting the balance of treatment versus prevention within the NHS right

•               The ability of the team to work effectively within the NHS

•               Whether patients will be happy with level of care provided.

In addition to widened access, the survey has increased in scope to explore a number of new topics. Those taking part are invited to respond to questions concerning their proposed age of retirement to gauge the possibility of a staffing crisis in the future, and whether they would feel happy encouraging a family member or friend to pursue a career in dentistry.

‘Finding out about team members’ retirement plans should offer an interesting insight into whether there might be a Provider crisis when it comes to asking dentists to sign up to a reformed NHS contract. In addition, asking whether one might encourage a family member or friend to pursue a career in dentistry really brings the overall mood of the profession into focus,’ remarked Andrew Lockhart-Mirams, a specialist in business advice and structures in healthcare and co-founder of Lockharts Solicitors.

Also commenting on the survey, Judith Husband, who sits on the BDA’s Principal Executive Committee, said: ‘I think it is very important to understand the landscape of what is going on. That is why I believe the ongoing, enhanced NHS Confidence Monitor survey is so important and I would urge team members to have their say.

‘No one wants to stop positive progress – but, from the Government’s perspective, this should be in the context of open and honest debate and a willingness to listen to what we, as a profession, have to say. This is a great opportunity to help facilitate that dialogue.’

To take part in the latest NHS Confidence Monitor and share your thoughts, please visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PracticePlanNHSConfidencemonitor3 before the closing date of 31st January 2016. The survey should take approximately three minutes of your time.

Once the results of the latest survey have been independently verified, they will be presented to an ‘Insights Panel’ made up of key opinion leaders and experts from the dental profession who will explore and debate their significance and their implications for the future of NHS Dentistry. The panel’s findings will then be shared with dental professionals throughout the UK.

For detailed results from the last two surveys, as well as to gain access to the discussions from our previous Insights Panel meetings and interviews with our panel members, visit www.nhsdentistryinsights.co.uk.

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Backing the Future of Dentistry – The Return of the Bursary Awards - applications open until December 31st 2015

Backing the Future of Dentistry – The Return of the Bursary Awards

While innovation and technological advancements will continue to play a key role in the development of dentistry, nurturing the future generation of dental professionals is equally as crucial.
 

As the Association of Dental Groups (ADG) understands the positive impact ingenuity and proactivity can have on a practice and on the profession, it is pleased to be welcoming back the Undergraduate and Postgraduate Bursary Awards in 2016. The ceremony will be held on the 18th March at The Library at the Royal College of Surgeons.                                

With applications open until December 31st 2015, there is still time for budding undergraduate students – including dentists, dental hygienists, dental therapists and clinical dental technicians – to enter their chosen category.

Covering the competencies of ethics, professionalism, scope of practice and communication, the ‘Skill mix in dentistry’ category focuses on ideas relating to teamwork and the use of skills in the dental setting. Alternatively, applicants can choose to enter the ‘Professionalism’ group. All they need to do is describe a time and situation in which professionalism and ethicality have been demonstrated for a chance to win.

With gold, silver and bronze bursary prizes available for both categories – offering £1,000, £750 and £250 respectively – all applications will be judged and awarded by an expert panel.

As Amardeep Singh Dhadwal, the Undergraduate (Professionalism) Gold Award Winner of 2015 comments, “I would definitely recommend other students to enter the competition next year; it is a great opportunity to discuss and consider what dentistry means to you and what you aspire to as a dental professional.”

Indeed, not only is the ADG Undergraduate Bursary Award 2016 an excellent opportunity for personal development in young professionals and a chance to earn the respect of their colleagues, but it is also beneficial to the future care of patients.

The ADG also recognises the talent and commitment of both postgraduate students and dentists with a dental degree undertaking postgraduate training. Offering a bursary of £5,000 to the winner, applications must detail a project to be executed within the UK – either to improve access for disadvantaged people or to build awareness on oral cancers and the need for early diagnosis – and must be implemented during 2016/17.

Although £2,500 of the award must be used to support the delivery of the project, the other half is very much a reward – and will be a well-deserved one at that. As Orna Ni Choileain, who was last year’s joint winner with Niall McGoldrick, highlights however, the bursary is much more than a cash prize. “When I found out we won the bursary, I had the perfect mixture of shock and excitement. It feels like a great achievement to have our work setting up the ‘Let’s Talk About Mouth Cancer’ charity recognised by other professionals on a national level.”

If you are thinking of applying or know somebody that is suitable for the award, contact the ADG today for more information. Who knows, it could be you?

 

For more information about the ADG visit www.dentalgroups.co.uk

 

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Be Aware of The Autumn Statement - Richard Lishman

Be Aware of The Autumn Statement - Richard Lishman
 

On 25 November 2015, the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne revealed the 2015 Spending Review and Autumn Statement. In the Summer Budget, Osborne declared it was time to become a country of higher wages, lower taxes and lower welfare. It would seem that the Review looks to reinforce this. However, how will this affect the dental profession, if at all?


Savings and Pensions

There are some aspects of the Autumn Statement that won’t affect dentists, but taxation on savings and pensions might. It is prudent to note that the band of savings income that is subject to the 0% starting rate will remain at £5,000 for 2016/2017 – a relevant point for those looking to achieve savings on tax through proactive mitigation.

In regards to individual savings accounts (ISAs), the limit will remain at £15,240. The Statement also announced that the list of qualifying investments for the new Finance ISA is to be extended in Autumn 2016 to include debt securities offered via crowdfunding platforms. As for the ISA savings of a deceased person, they will continue to benefit from ISA tax advantages during the administration of their estate.

The Review has also outlined plans to introduce legislation that will enable the pension tax rules on bridging pensions to be aligned with Department for Work and Pensions legislation. As for the pensions tax relief consultation that was launched in the Summer Budget 2015, the proposals will be published in the 2016 Budget.


Inheritance Tax

Another aspect of the Autumn Statement that might affect dentists is changes to inheritance tax (IHT). The Autumn Statement has revealed that inheritance tax rules are to be backdated to 2011 to prevent pension scheme members from being charged for inheritance tax if they don't drawdown their monetary funds before their death.


Buy-To-Let Scheme

For those looking to invest in additional properties, including buy to let properties and second homes, from 1 April 2016 they will have to pay an extra 3% in stamp duty. The money raised will be used to help those struggling to buy their first home. While this may be costly to some, it is certainly good news for the younger generation of dentists who are not yet on the property ladder. With announcements that a new Help to Buy equity loan scheme will lend 40% of the price of a home to those living in London, it is especially good news for those working and living in the capital.


Rent-A-Room Relief

Additionally, there has been an increase in rent-a-room relief, which is the amount of rental income that can be received tax-free by individuals renting a room or rooms in their main residence. From April 2016, the tax-free amount will be increased to £7,500 per annum.


Get Advice

All in all, the Autumn Statement was met with mixed reactions and certainly provides food for thought. For dentists specifically, there is much to be considered, but there is nothing that is especially concerning. If you are unsure what the Review might mean for you and your practice, it is always beneficial to seek out the advice of trusted financial professionals.

 

For more information please call 0845 345 5060, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.money4dentists.com

 

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Denplan welcomes Osborne’s report on empowering dental patients to make the best choices

Denplan welcomes Osborne’s report on empowering dental patients to make the best choices

Denplan, the UK’s leading dental payment plan specialist, has welcomed George Osborne’s call for clearer dental pricing and treatment plans in HM Treasury’s “A Better Deal” report, which was published this week. 

The report stated that pricing for dentistry can be opaque and confusing and that the government wants to ensure that dentist treatment plans and price lists are clear and easily accessible, empowering patients in England to make the best choices.

Roger Matthews, Chief Dental Officer at Denplan said: “Clear communication between dentists and patients is fundamental in every dental practice, especially in regards to treatment plans and pricing. We strongly agree with the Chancellor’s statement in the report that all dental patients should have access to the information they need to make the right decisions about their dental care.

“Denplan encourages all member dental practices to build in enough discussion time with their patients to allow them to explain treatment options and any associated costs. Denplan is also a co-originator and signatory of the BDA Private Dental Plans Code of Practice. The code emphasises the need to provide patients with adequate information about the choices available, work with clear and fair contracts, ensure they understand the payment procedures for each option and, where appropriate, any on-going costs or exclusions, and have in place a system for dealing with complaints and feedback.”

Denplan has a range of support services available to its member dentists and this includes providing regular guidance and materials for practices to use. Roger Matthews continued:

“Denplan member practices are able to access a price list template to ensure they are following the General Dental Council’s standards which requires practices to display their price lists. Through a network of field-based consultants across the UK (supported by an office-based team), Denplan also works continually with member practices to provide business support, which includes helping practices to set their fees fairly.”

In a 2014 Denplan patient survey of over 8,800 patients, 90% said that Denplan allows them to budget for their dental care and treatment*. Roger Matthews added: “We find that patients appreciate the clarity that comes with a dental payment plan as they prefer to know exactly what their dental care is going to cost each month without any unexpected bills.”

“Osborne’s report today should serve as a sharp reminder to all types of practices (NHS or private) on the requirement to provide patients with the most comprehensive information on treatment options and pricing. If greater transparency in this area helps patients make more informed choices about their dental care and oral health it can only be a positive step forward for dentistry.”

www.denplan.co.uk

*Your Denplan Survey Oct-Dec 2014. Total respondents: 8,802.

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Maximising Value Turbo-Charge your Turnover - Luke Moore, Dental Elite

Maximising Value Turbo-Charge your Turnover
 

Turbo charge your Turnover
 

Website optimisation can be a cost effective and easily integrated marketing strategy for a dental practice to pursue. Practice owners need to spend time dedicated to the clinical aspects of a dental surgery, and this is where their expertise lie. However, this can result in the business side of the practice being neglected having detrimental effects on the revenue flow, so owners need to identify tactics that have maximum impact with minimal disruption on the care of their patients.

 

The internet has transformed the way in which businesses can communicate to both their current and potential patients. It is another channel that can be utilised to target specific groups with a tailored message that will resonate with their needs. Most UK dental practices have a website, even if it is not fully optimised, and there are a number of routes that a new patient can take to find it. The majority probably start from a well-known search engine and if a website has been designed effectively, it should have a high enough organic ranking to be featured in the first few search results.

 

However, many websites have to work proactively to acquire a prime position. One method is to pay for advertising. The advertisement needs to be carefully considered to ensure its effectiveness: concise, informative and intriguing. However, this does not guarantee a new patient, with the average conversion rate currently presenting at only 2.5%.  An important tip to increase sales conversion is to ensure that the landing page from the advertisement supports the message. If the landing page does not give the information that the patient requires at first glance, then the viewer is unlikely to spend any more time on that website. Also, it’s important that the potential new patient can easily make contact with the practice through simple forms of visual contact details. Even if the potential new patient does not convert following initial contact, this data can then be used to communicate with the ‘hot lead’ in the future.

 

With over a hundred years’ of experience across the team, Dental Elite can offer your practice a ‘Health Check’ and practical advice on how to achieve your objectives. Dental Elite will work with you to ensure the practice is optimising its revenue stream with view to maximising the valuation for when you come to sell. The Dental Elite directors have experience in marketing and Search Engine Optimisation and so these activities are at the core of the service offered.

 

Web site optimisation can be a powerful marketing tool to drive new patients to your practice, maximise their investment once there and increase the practice’s revenue stream. With just a few simple tactics applied online, the practice’s potential reach to new patients is enhanced with minimal disruption to clinical care.

 

For more information visit www.dentalelite.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 01788 545 900

 

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A Winning Combination - Wrights

A Winning Combination - Wrights
 

Dedicated to providing first class customer service, Wrights, the independent distributor, continues to build upon the ever-growing reputation of what it can achieve and provide. Lisa Montague, Practice Manager of Hook Lane Dental Care in Welling, explains why Wrights has won her and her practice over.
 

Ever since our Wrights representative, Shilesh Jetha, first introduced himself to me two years ago, ordering within my practice has not been the same. Happy, friendly and communicative, we hit it off straight away.
 

He showed me price comparisons and potential offers compared to competitors. Since then Shilesh has price matched, or beaten, everything that he possibly can and he continues to ensure I get the very best deals available.
 

Since transferring a lot of our ordering to Wrights, I have sampled more and more products, which for the most part, have been exactly what we were looking for. Although we use Wrights mostly for the branded products, we have certainly seen an increase in our use of own brand products, now using the gloves for instance.
 

In the event of us not liking a specific product, Shilesh has always been very understanding, taking the feedback away and producing an alternative for us to try. What’s more, he always seems to get us a better deal, which is integral in an industry driven by price.
 

Although I do a weekly order, I probably speak to Shilesh most days! He is extremely helpful and accommodating, ensuring that products arrive next day delivery whenever possible.
 

Even though we are getting top brands for amazing prices, for me the customer service is what makes Wrights stand out from the rest. If I ring Shilesh with a problem or an issue, he deals with it straight away. As a very good problem solver, I always feel assured that I am getting an incredible service.
 

Ultimately, he is a perfect example of the kind of representative that Wrights need and do employ. Changing my perception and attitude to ordering, Shilesh has essentially acted as the catalyst for our move to Wrights. The products are great and the pricing is unmatched, but Wrights earn its reputation on the customer service alone.

 

As a result, I would definitely recommend Wrights, and have done so already to several practices.

 

For more information contact Wrights on 0800 66 88 99 or visit the easy to navigate website www.wright-cottrell.co.uk

 

 

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The John Zamet Memorial Prize in Periodontal Research

The John Zamet Memorial Prize in Periodontal Research

The John Zamet Memorial Prize has been established to recognise and commemorate the significant contribution made to clinical periodontology by the late Dr John Zamet.
 

Dr Zamet was an Honorary Consultant and Senior Research Fellow at the UCL Eastman Dental Institute, a Past President and Honorary Member of the British Society of Periodontology and the founder Chairman and a Trustee of the Alpha Omega London Chapter and Charitable Trust.

Applications are open to all UK-based postgraduate dental students studying for a Masters degree or PhD who are undertaking or who have recently completed original research associated with clinical periodontology.

The prize will be awarded every other year with a value of £2,000.

Applicants should submit a covering letter and an abstract not exceeding 1000 words which should, at least, cover the following areas:

1. Background to project?
2. Aims
?3. Methods?
4. Relevance to clinical periodontology
?5. Start and completion dates (estimated completion date will suffice if ongoing)

Three paper copies of the application should be submitted by 31st December 2015 to:

Professor Andrew Eder?Chairman, The Alpha Omega London Charitable Trust 2nd floor, 57a Wimpole Street, London W1G 8YP

And also sent electronically via email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.?. The applicant must also submit a letter of support from their research supervisor confirming their supervision of the project. The submission will be considered by a panel of at least two Specialists in Periodontology of Professorial/Consultant status whose decision is final.

 

The successful applicant would normally be invited to present the results and/or clinical implications of the research at a meeting of the Alpha Omega London Chapter.

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Truly universal - Filtek Z500 Universal Restorative

Truly universal - Filtek Z500 Universal Restorative

For a restorative that is suitable for everyday dentistry, try Filtek Z500 Universal Restorative from 3M ESPE.

 

Filtek Z500 has a multitude of benefits including good radiopacity[i] and light stability,[ii] high flexural strength,[iii] and low shrinkage.[iv] All of these factors add up to simple handling and durability, which is essential in the dental setting.

 

Not only that, Filtek Z500 Universal Restorative is available in eight universal and one opaque shade, so you can create beautiful restorations. The combination of this, along with the excellent polish retention,[v] makes Filtek Z500 your go-to product for aesthetic restorations.  

 

For a truly universal restorative, try Filtek Z500 from 3M ESPE today.

 

For more information, call 0845 602 5094 or visit www.3Mespe.co.uk



[i] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Z500 radiopacity, 2010. Claim no 4441

[ii] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Z500 light stability, 2010. Claim no 4442

[iii] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Z500 flexural strength, 2010. Claim no 4430

[iv] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Z500 shrinkage, 2010. Claim no 4433

[v] 3M ESPE Internal Data, Filtek Z500 polish retention, 2010. Claim no 4427

 

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‘A very impressive course’ – from the IAS Academy

A very impressive course – from the IAS Academy

Dr. James Tinning of Pinfold Dental Practice, Cheshire took the London Inman Aligner hands-on training course.

“Following a seminar I attended presented by Tif Qureshi, I quickly realised that being able to offer patients the Inman Aligner system would be a great skill to add to my armamentarium.

 

“The course was excellent and very impressive – not only an informative and interesting day, but also a really enjoyable one as well. Instructors Tif Qureshi and James Russell were very professional and they were happy to spend time discussing potential cases.

 

“The appliance itself is very simple to use in practice and I have been able to use both the online support forum and help from NimroDENTAL laboratory to develop my knowledge of the Inman Aligner and treating more complex cases.

 

“I was impressed by the IAS academy hands-on training course and I would definitely recommend it to other colleagues.”

 

Committed to providing the highest quality of training and support, IAS Academy runs courses for the Inman Aligner, ClearSmile Aligners and ClearSmile Braces. To find out more, contact the team today.

 

 

For more information, go to www.iasortho.com, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0845 366 5477.

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8181 Hits
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High street mortgage lenders shun new associates

High street mortgage lenders shun new associates
 

A review of the top five lenders on comparison website Moneysupermarket.com revealed they will not lend to newly self-employed dentists regardless of income. Chartered Financial Planners PFM Dental undertook the review and found that self-employed dentists without at least two years of accounts were barred from obtaining a mortgage.

 

Jon Drysdale of PFM Dental commented: "We based our review on a first-time buyer wishing to borrow £180,000 for a house purchase of £200,000. The majority of dental associates would easily afford the repayments and they have virtually guaranteed job security. The good news is that specialist dental advisers are aware of lenders happy to accept mortgage applications from newly qualified associates."

 

Around 1,000 dentists have now completed Foundation Training in the current academic year and the majority will start associate positions during August and September. The move to self-employment usually results in an immediate uplift in income, causing many dentists to think seriously about their first property purchase.

 

Jon Drysdale is an independent financial adviser for Chartered Financial Planners PFM Dental. He specialises in pension and wealth management advice exclusively for dentists.

 

For more information visit www.pfmdental.co.uk

  4319 Hits
4319 Hits
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True Confessions

True Confessions by @DentistGoneBadd

  12277 Hits
12277 Hits
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Everyday People Should Be Humbled

Everyday People Should Be Humbled

The current refugee crisis in Syria has been brought to global prominence with the heart-breaking image of three year-old Aylan Kurdi, lifeless in the surf after a desperate, failed attempt with his family to flee his birthplace and strive for a better life in Europe.

 

The Washington Post summed up Aylan’s plight:

 

“…As refugees from the Islamic State and other turbulent parts of the world besiege Eurostar trains, crowd the French port of Calais, and die on the shores of Libya or in trucks in Austria, it’s clear that Aylan is just one of countless many[i].”

 

The tragedy of losing this little boy is the stark result of political upheaval, war and suffering in our neighbouring countries. These are ordinary people, like us, who have left behind families, jobs and homes they loved, due to dreadful circumstances way beyond their control. However, in trying to flee their nations, they risk losing their lives. In Syria, the crisis has reached monumental proportions – the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre states that half of the country’s 22 million population is either displaced within its borders or has fled overseas[ii].

 

European heads of government face the immediate and seemingly insurmountable task of accommodating thousands of desperate people arriving daily on flimsy dinghies at Greek shores. However, because communication lines are broken, it’s easy to forget that there are millions more displaced in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Sudan. Here, communities are torn apart by war, persecution and unimaginable misery and having fled their homes, still remain in their home countries.

 

The International Rescue Committee depicted the experience of displacement by documenting refugees’ possessions in photos as they arrived on the Greek island of Lesbos. One 17 year-old Afghan boy simply had a change of clothes (shorts, a t-shirt and lightweight trainers), a small amount of Turkish Lira, SIM cards, a comb, bandages and, shamefully, face whitening cream and hair gel. He thought that by whitening his skin and spiking up his hair, the authorities wouldn’t know he’s a refugee and therefore, he wouldn’t be arrested[iii].

 

Can any of us really appreciate what it is like to be driven from home in a matter of hours, to then have your last remaining valuables stolen at checkpoints before another fifty-mile trek to relative safety? This is a typical experience relayed to Cardinal Vincent Nichols (Archbishop of Westminster) when he met displaced Christians living in makeshift camps in Erbil, Iraq, seeking refuge from ISIS violence. He is at pains to emphasise that it is crucial for these people in order to preserve their dignity by giving them a home, however makeshift and temporary it may be[iv].

 

Thankfully, this fate is extremely unlikely to beset those of us living in Europe, which is why we are in a position to help. Whilst David Cameron, Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin thrash out the political complexities within war-torn countries, the average person reflects, shelving the minutiae of day-to-day life to consider how their actions can make a difference.

 

Cardinal Nichols touched upon a very human element intrinsic to each and every one of the millions of displaced and resettling people around the world – the preservation of dignity is not only humane, it’s imperative. So, it follows that all of the items supplied to those in need have enormous value, however big and however small. In stable countries, everyday items including toiletries and oral health adjuncts are just taken for granted. But, what would it be like if we had no means to access those products for ourselves, if we no longer had the freedom to cater for the daily routines to which we’re accustomed?

 

The Humble Smile Foundation and Humble Brush teams are dedicated to providing eco friendly, sustainable, efficient toothbrushes wherever peoples’ needs are the greatest. There can be no argument that the displaced, in many cases only possessing the clothes on their backs, have needs that reach far beyond the imagination. In support of the work the charity Assyrians Without Borders undertakes, aiming to assess the mental health, understand the trauma and address health conditions for refugees both in Northern Iraq, Syria and Turkey, the Humble Smile Foundation has donated over 100,000 toothbrushes. Of course, oral care is just one example of the unending building blocks involved in establishing some semblance of normality.

 

The non-profit Humble Smile Foundation gives a toothbrush or equivalent oral care to an underprivileged child for every sale of a Humble Brush, made from biodegradable natural bamboo. It’s well documented that taking care of our teeth and gums assists in our general wellbeing. Whether the recipients of these brushes are living in basic refugee camps or in remote parts of our world with no access to dental assistance, nurturing their teeth is a good place to start with bettering their lives.

 

Humble Brush is now available in the UK and Ireland. For more information please visit www.humblebrush.co.uk, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0286 862 8880.

To order please contact the exclusive distributor Quintess Denta www.quintesshumblebrush.co.uk

 

Follow us on social media:

@HumbleBrush and www.facebook.com/humblebrushuk



[i] The Washington Post. Aylan’s Story: How Desperation Left A 3 Year-Old Boy Washed Up On A Turkish Beach by Justin Wm. Moyer, September 2015. http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/09/03/a-desperate-refugee-family-a-capsized-boat-and-3-year-old-dead-on-a-beach-in-turkey/ (Accessed 29/9/2015)

[iii] Fast Company Magazine. What’s In A Refugee’s Bag? See What People Carry As They Flee: Heartbreaking Photos Of The Things People Take When They Have Nothing Left. http://www.fastcoexist.com/3050993/whats-in-a-refugees-bag-see-what-people-carry-as-they-flee#3 (Accessed 30/9/2015)

[iv] ITV report – Cardinal Nichols: Erbil’s Displaced Refugees ‘Need Our Help’, April 2015. http://www.itv.com/news/2015-04-12/cardinal-nichols-calls-for-more-to-be-done-to-help-erbils-displaced-refuge (Accessed 29/9/2015)

 

  4140 Hits
4140 Hits
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In need at Noel: offering financial support to those who need it the most

In need at Noel: offering financial support to those who need it the most

The Christmas countdown is upon us, and the boxes on the calendar will be ticked off leading up to the season of fun and festivities. Whilst this is exciting for many, it can be a daunting time for some.

This holiday season, some will struggle to put food on the table and pay their bills, let alone buy presents and indulge in festive treats. Indeed, the number of Britons expected to borrow money for basic living this Christmas could be high as 21%.[i]

The country is also experiencing an increase in the use of food banks, with 2014-2015 statistics showing a 19% rise since last year,[ii] and it is thought that 2,744 are sleeping rough on any one night. [iii] Poverty, perhaps, is closer to home than we thought.

Needing help

Despite advancements in technology and the implementation of ergonomic friendly products within surgeries, work-related illness and injury remains the biggest cause of financial struggle. Figures from 2013/2014 show that 1.2 million working people were affected by this and as a result 28.2 million working days were lost.[iv]

Accidents, bereavement, stress, addiction, marital problems and mental health are other possible factors that unsettle financial stability, impacting everyone from dentists to their dependants, friends and colleagues.

A helping hand

In times of hardship help can come in many forms; a shoulder to lean on can sometimes be enough. But for many, financial aid is required for food and clothing, bills and mortgage payments, nursing home fees and even funeral costs.

Although the Summer Budget 2015 recently made cuts, benefits are still available up to a possible £23,000 in London and £20,000 in the rest of the UK.[v] Yet, research has shown that some people are too embarrassed to seek help and as much as £19 billion in state benefits can go unclaimed each year.[vi]

At some point or another most of us need help, which is why the BDA Benevolent Fund works to provide support to any registered UK dentist in financial need. With help from other professionals, regular donations and gift aid, the Fund provides one-off or regular grants to those who need it most. The difference that this can make at any time, let alone Christmas, is immeasurable.

A donation can help someone in need and make their Christmas worth celebrating.

Thank you.

The BDA Benevolent Fund relies on your help to continue its work,
so please contact us on 020 7486 4994 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,
or to give a donation today go to www.bdabenevolentfund.org.uk.

 

And if you are in need of help yourself, please contact us now.

All enquiries are considered in confidence.

 

Registered charity no. 208146

 



[i] Accessed online 9 July 2015 http://www.moneyadvicetrust.org/media/news/Pages/Warning-as-Britons-put-Christmas-on-credit.aspx

[ii] Accessed online 9 July 2015 themoneycharity.org.uk/media/Debt-Stats-Full-January-2014-pdf

[iv] Accessed online 9 July 2015 http://www.hse.gov.uk/statistics/

[v] Accessed online 9 July 2015 https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/budget-july-2015

[vi] Accessed online 9 July 2015 https://www.turn2us.org.uk/About-Us/Research-and-Insights/On-borrowed-money-on-borrowed-time-payday-loans

 

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The next generation in bulk filling reaches the UK

b2ap3_thumbnail_SonicFill2.jpg

With SonicFill, Kerr provided clinicians with THE fast and easy composite filling system for posterior restorations.

And now there’s SonicFill 2, which enables clinicians to perform posterior restorations with an easy-to-use, one-step procedure that provides everything you need for reliable bulk filling: the adaptation of a flowable during placement, a high depth-of-cure, low polymerisation shrinkage stress, and the strength and aesthetics you would expect from a posterior restorative.

SonicFill 2’s composite incorporates a highly-filled proprietary resin with special modifiers that react to sonic energy. As sonic energy is applied through the handpiece, the modifier causes the viscosity to drop (up to 84%), increasing the flowability of the composite, enabling quick placement and precise adaptation to the cavity walls. When the sonic energy is stopped, the composite returns to a more viscous, non-slumping state that is perfect for carving and contouring.

The result is:

• No voids, gaps or seams

• Excellent marginal integrity

• Outstanding adaptation to cavity surfaces

• High depth of cure

• Excellent strength, polishability and wear resistance

• Low sensitivity to ambient light.

 

SonicFill’s technology is unlike any other composite material on the market. To experience why for yourself, please call 01733 892292, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.kerrdental.co.uk.

 

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3641 Hits
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A restorative that goes with the flow...

b2ap3_thumbnail_Kerr_Logo_Blue_CMYK.jpg
 

Kerr’s team knows that direct procedures require multiple technological solutions. That’s why we have created a robust family of universal composites with a variety of different handling characteristics and property values.

 

Take, for example, Herculite™ XRV Ultra Flow, a medium viscosity light cure nanohybrid resin restorative that combines the long-standing expertise of the Herculite brand with an innovative flowable composite.

 

Formulated with Kerr’s rheological expertise, Herculite XRV Ultra Flow, thanks to its Smart Placement Technology, is able to flow easily when used as a base/liner and maintain its shape when used in small restorations.

 

Other features include:

• Outstanding flexural strength

• Low shrinkage

• Easy polishability

• Excellent gloss retention.

 

The Herculite XRV Ultra range offers the best of both worlds – strength and aesthetics – to give you long-lasting, beautiful restorations.

 

For further information, please call 01733 892292, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.kerrdental.co.uk.

 

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3615 Hits
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World-class treatment - Ten Dental / The Implant Restoration Course

World-class treatment - Ten Dental / The Implant Restoration Course

Dr Darshak Amin from Dentistree @ Horley has been referring implant patients to Ten Dental for approximately seven years: “The team at Ten Dental are always prompt, professional and provide correspondence every step of the way.

 

“Patients continue to be impressed with the service they receive at Ten Dental and feel reassured that their own dentist is involved in the treatment.

 

“Martin Wanendeya and Nik Sisodia at Ten Dental have a vast amount of experience in their speciality fields, especially implants, which means that I know my patients will be treated professionally, in a caring environment and to a world-class standard. In short, it gives me the piece of mind that my patients will receive the best care possible.”

 

Contact the knowledgeable team today to find out more about the comprehensive and personable implant referral service Ten Dental can offer your patients.

 

For more information about Ten Dental and The Implant Restoration Course visit Facebook/Implant Restoration Course-IRC, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit www.implant-restoration.com or call 020 7622 7610

  3796 Hits
3796 Hits
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The immeasurable effects of confidence - CB12

The immeasurable effects of confidence - CB12
 

How confident a person feels during a particular situation or activity depends upon numerous elements and beliefs. And, everyone is different with varying levels of awareness, as well as divergent and personal areas of importance. Confidence is something that cannot be precisely measured, however, most people are likely to respond favourably to success and accomplishment. Equally, when an individual is involved in the achievements of another it can also boost confidence, particularly if that person is in a familiar situation or has similar values or goals to their own.
 

Dental professionals will be aware of the importance of building confidence in members of the dental team, nurturing skills and talents and assisting each other. This is an area of familiarity, of mutual benefit, where challenges can be shared and overcome collectively. When this is accomplished well, it extends to the patients visiting the practice, increasing their confidence in the qualities and proficiency of the people that work there.
 

For many individuals, personal achievement influences their levels of confidence. Some feel self-assured by their level of fitness or sporting prowess, financial position, social status or occupational accomplishment, for others it is their academic ability, knowledge or skills. Conversely, a person’s confidence can be significantly influenced by their appearance or how they believe others perceive them.
 

Decades of studies have demonstrated that people, in particular women, are bombarded with images of unrealistic beauty that have resulted in unhappiness, anxiety, low self-esteem and low body confidence.[i] The compounding affect of negative body satisfaction has been shown to be a contributory factor in poor mental wellbeing[ii], eating disorders, obesity[iii] and risky behaviour in relation to drugs, smoking and sex.[iv]
 

Although only 32% of adults[v] agree with the statement: ‘your value depends on how you look’, many individuals become devoted consumers of products, programmes and procedures to improve their appearance and indeed their confidence. Fundamentally, many people overlook the value of more cost effective strategies and the impact and importance of good overall health.
 

For example it is believed that physical activity can improve self-esteem and self acceptance, indeed when a person enjoys the exercise they engage in, they are more likely to continue, and garner positive psychological effects.[vi]
 

As we know, the health of the mouth is crucial to overall health and visits to the dental practice can also help people to gain confidence. Patients are able to improve their smile, access safe cosmetic and tooth whitening procedures as well as essential oral health instruction and advice. Certainly, for some patients, conditions requiring orthodontic or cosmetic intervention can impact on issues of self-esteem and confidence. The British Orthodontic Society, in their Guidelines for Referrals for Orthodontic Treatment[vii] note improvement in dental and facial aesthetics often results “in improved self-esteem and other psycho-social aspects of the individual.”
 

In addition, no matter how healthy or satisfied some people may feel, they still could have feelings of uncertainty or concern about their breath. Interestingly it was recently revealed that nearly 40 per cent of people worry about their mouth once a day[viii]. Believed to affect around 25% of the entire population oral malodour be an exasperating and sometimes debilitating condition. In a seven-year Swiss study, halitosis was found to bring about inhibition, insecurity, withdrawal and reduced social contact to chronic sufferers.[ix]
 

Maintaining good oral hygiene and having regular dental checks and treatment when necessary will have a significant effect but practitioners can also annul any worries by encouraging patients to use an effective daily oral deodorant such as CB12 mouth rinse.  By recommending CB12, practitioners can offer a reliable way of keeping the breath fresh, as it has been proven to work better than 18 other leading mouthwash brands. CB12 is able to target and neutralise all three odour-causing Volatile Sulphur Compounds (VSCs)[x] that cause oral malodour and continue to ensure first class breath for 12 hours. Not only can patients feel confident about their breath but practitioners can also feel empowered by recommending a clinically proven solution to the problem.
 

When dental professionals feel appreciated for their skills, advice and contributions they are likely to feel more self-assured about their abilities and enhance their team’s performance. If it is possible to successfully resolve a condition such as unpleasant breath, the rewards are far reaching both physically and psychologically. In turn, this confidence and empowerment has a reciprocal effect that extends positively to colleagues and patients.

 

For more information about CB12 and how it could benefit your patients, please visit www.cb12.com

 

           



[i] YWCA Beauty at any cost. The Consequences of America’s Beauty Obsession on Women & Girls. August 2008. http://www.ywca.org [Accessed 13th May 2015]

[ii] Puhl, R. & Latner, J. D. 2007. Stigma, obesity and the health of a nation’s children. Psychological Bulletin. 133: 557-580.

[iii] Janet Franklin, Gareth DenyerKatharine S. Steinbeck, Ian D. Caterson, Andrew J. Hill, Obesity and Risk of Low Self-esteem: A Statewide Survey of Australian Children. PEDIATRICS Vol. 118 No. 6 December 1, 2006 pp. 2481 -2487 (doi: 10.1542/peds.2006-0511) http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/118/6/2481.short [Accessed 13th May 2015]

[iv] Government Equalities Office May 2013. Body image – a rapid evidence assessment of the literature. www.gov.uk/.../120715_RAE_on_body_image_final.docx [Accessed 13th May 2015]

[v] Government Equalities Office October 2014. Body Confidence – Findings from the British Social Attitudes Survey. www.gov.uk/.../Body_Confidence_Findings_October_2014.docx [Accessed 13th May 2015]

6 Cohen G, Shamus E. Depressed, Low Self-Esteem: What can exercise do for you? The Internet Journal of Allied Health Sciences and Practice. April 2009. Volume 7 Number 2. http://ijahsp.nova.edu/articles/Vol7Num2/pdf/cohen.pdf [Accessed 13th May 2015]

[vii] http://www.bos.org.uk - The Justification for Orthodontic Treatment - British Orthodontic Society. [Accessed 13th May 2015]

[viii] Survey by Gorkana January 2015, commissioned by Align Technology

[ix] Andrea Zürcher, Andreas Filippi, Dept of Oral Surgery, University of Basel. 'Findings, Diagnoses and Results of a Halitosis Clinic over a Seven Year Period'. Schweiz Monatsschr Zahnmed. [Swiss Monthly Journal of Dentistry] 3/2012 Vol. 122 pp. 205-210

[x] Greenman et. al., Oral Diseases, Comparative effects of various commercially available mouthrinse formulations on oral malodour, (2011), 17:180-186.

 

 

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3944 Hits
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Optimising your practice - Tim Caudrelier

Optimising your practice - Tim Caudrelier

As with any business, it is essential to have a well-thought-out marketing plan that will allow you to attract, capture and retain patients. Customer value optimisation (CVO) is one system that can be applied to dental practices to aid success. Consisting of seven steps, it can significantly simplify the process and help your practice to grow and prosper.

 

Step 1: Determine product/ market fit

Dentistry is a well-established sector that will continually be required by patients of all ages. However, it is important to choose the correct product or service for the market. If, for example, you are looking to offer a new orthodontic product or service in your practice, it is worth researching whether the market for the product will be sustainable.

 

Step 2: Choose a traffic source

Attracting interest from potential patients online will greatly optimise your chances of acquiring new clients, selling more products and services and increasing the frequency of sales.

 

With a number of options to choose from, it is best to focus on one traffic source, then once mastered add a second and third. The goal throughout is to drive prospects into the CVO funnel. This begins with the lead magnet.

 

Step 3: Offer a lead magnet

The lead magnet prompts a transaction of information by offering an irresistible bribe that gives a specific chunk of value to a prospect patient in exchange for their contact information. With the lead magnet at the very top of the CVO funnel, increasing opt-ins here will pay dividends throughout the rest of the system and allow you to provide more tripwire offers.

 

Step 4: Offer a tripwire

Tripwire offers are made to potential patients that have displayed interest through the lead magnet. The main aim of a tripwire is to change the relationship from prospect to customer through offers that individuals are unable to resist.

 

Step 5: Offer a core product

The core offer relates to your flagship product or service, perhaps implants, orthodontic or whitening treatment. In some cases, the core offer will be profitable, but it does not have to be. If you follow through on the CVO process, you could take everything you make from the core offer and reinvest it to acquire more patients.

 

Step 6: Offer a profit maximiser

The profit maximiser increases the average transaction value per customer. Through an upsell or cross-sell, patients will spend more during one transaction.

 

Step 7: Create the return path

The final way to grow your practice is to increase the number of transactions per customer. Having gained their contact information through the initial lead magnet, you will have the ability to continue marketing, offering them new lead magnets, tripwires, core offers and profit maximisers.

 

Effective email marketing is one way to maintain communication with patients and increase transaction frequency. The experts at 7connections have recently developed AIM – Automated Intelligent Marketing – specifically for small dental practices. Based on proven strategies, such as CVO, AIM can help your practice to reap the rewards of a clear and well-thought-out marketing plan.

 

Successful marketing systems can enhance a business and allow you to make the most of opportunities. Increase patient numbers, enhance the average transaction value per client and raise the number of transactions per patient with a well-thought-out marketing solution.

 

For more information about 7connections, please call 01647 478145 or email pThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Alternatively, please visit the new website www.7connections.com.

 

  3040 Hits
3040 Hits
NOV
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See more, treat more - Nuview

See more, treat more - Nuview

In dentistry what you can see greatly affects what you can treat. By embracing the latest magnification and visualisation technology, such as the Carl Zeiss OPMI Pico dental microscope, your practice will see countless benefits and be able to treat so much more.

 

Available in the UK from Nuview, the OPMI Pico incorporates the latest video and ‘live streaming’ technology, allowing you to record examinations and treatments in HD. The innovative camera options available facilitate excellent patient consultation and documentation and provide a fantastic tool for education and communication for the whole dental team.

 

The compact, high performing and easy-to-use OPMI Pico offers solid, ergonomic support for the most demanding of applications – whether in restorative dentistry, endodontics, implantology or periodontics. It is also available with a Varioskop objective lens that allows you to adjust the focal length to focus on virtually any image detail without leaving your preferred working position.

 

To find out more about the Carl Zeiss OPMI Pico contact Nuview today.      

 

For more information please call Nuview on 01453 872266,

email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.nuview.co

 

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