According to the ADA, the demand for dental services will increase as the population ages and as research continues to link oral health to overall health. Currently, there is a shortage of dentists in the US, and this trend is estimated to continue until 2033. Dental practices have the lowest failure rate of all businesses and the dental industry is growing at 6% annually. These factors create a tremendous opportunity for doctors to expand their business now to take advantage of the increased demand for quality dentistry. Making a smart growth plan to expand your existing space, or build a new larger office to accommodate the demand for treatment is the smartest decision you can make at this point in your dental career.
In the business of dentistry, across the country, it is typical for a practice to collect $250,000 per operatory that is in production 4 days a week. Think of it this way, you have three operatories and room to expand for two more. You are on the fence about the expansion, but you know you have a strong dental team and very productive hygiene department and patients who love your practice. Building two additional operatories can yield $500,000 annually and improves your ability to offer treatment in a timely manner and in fewer appointments, which is even more convenient for your patients. Everyone wins!
In the case of a start up a typical plan will include 3 operatories with room to build out 2 more. As soon as the practice has grown to produce $750,000 annually and has approximately 700 patients, it is time to get a bigger boat! By adding the additional 2 operatories, you have already proactively planned for, you will have a practice capable of collecting $1.25 million and provide high quality care to 1400 patients.
The doctors I worry about the most have 5-6 operatories and over 1800 patients. Bringing in a second provider seems like an obvious way to manage the workload, but it does not expand production to the optimal level that is possible in a two doctor practice. In this scenario there is a shortage of operatories. The office needs to have 9-10 ops in order to have enough space for hygiene production and for doctors to have room to efficiently provide treatment. If one doctor needs 5 operatories for a healthy practice, 2 doctors need 10. Your production will rise by $250,000 per op. Not expanding can cost you $1,000,000 per year, cause stress, and lower you patient experience because of long waits for appointments due to lack of space.
We can make a customized plan including, the financing, a timeline and a breakeven point for your investment. Costs of expansion or start up practices can be formulated to make sure you are not leaving money on the table in your practice. My reputation, experience, advice and insight are the greatest assets I have to offer my clients. The relationship I have with my doctor clients is a long-term commitment to the ongoing health and growth of their business. The customized treatment plan I develop for you is key to the successful execution of their project vision and I continue to be a dedicated trusted advisor long after that vision becomes a reality! Please take a moment to view featured projects and read testimonials from doctors about their projects. You can also fill out Getting Started forms on my website. Let’s meet to discuss ways we can work together to plan and build the successful modern dental practice of your dreams.
(Small boat photo courtesy Melanie Hamlett)