Cliff's Notes

The Business of Dentistry

Dentisry’s Future, Welcome to the Twilight Zone!

Cliff’s Notes for April 20, 2014

Cliff Marsh, Henry Schein ……Cell: 201-321-7494……Fax: 201-262-2210



The reason we do what we do, is so that we can to do what we want to do, when we want to do it!

It’s a tongue twister, but working as a team and making informed decisions, will get us there.



Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose.”

Bill Gates


This Week’s Feature on the Cliff’s Notes Channel

“Oral Cancer Screening”


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In This Week’s Issue

  • The Root of It Commentary: Dentistry’s Future,
    • Welcome to the Twilight Zone!
  • Product Review: BioActive Materials!
  • The Dentrix Office Manager Blog:5 Reports the Doctor Should Look At!
  • American Association of Dental Office Managers: It’s Cruise Time!
  • Dentistry Beyond the Mouth:The Elephant in the Room & Being at Ground Zero!
  • The Disney Magic of Management: Insights from the Mouse!
  • This Week in Dentistry: Americans with Disabilities Act-New Penalties!
  • The Henry Schein Outlet Store: Spectra Caries Detection System!

The Root of It Commentary……………………………………………………………………..

image001  Dentistry’s Future, Welcome to the Twilight Zone!

There is a bright future for dentistry but not as it was traditionally in the past. Healthcare has evolved into a new form that appears to be focused on the masses and individual attention has now become a luxury. Dentistry is one of the few cottage industries still remaining in our new “big box” world and the hygienist that sees 8-10 patients a day still has the ability to develop a friendly and personal relationship with a patient. Relationships and patient contact is necessary for the survival of the private dental practice. If “big box” stores have the contact (marketing), then what’s left?

Now enter the twilight zone, your team is the future, not you! It’s time to step outside the dental school box and start understanding what your patient sees. As an example think about the most sophisticated technology available to dentistry, Cad Cam, Cone Beam, OC detection, OSA screening, they are all designed for team members to implement. By reducing the doctors chair time (expanded duties) they can see more patients for exams and preform more clinical procedures. A same-day crown procedures will keep a patient in the chair for about 90 minutes, but the doctor is only required for less than half of that time. So, who is interacting with the patient for the entire 90 minutes? The reality is that you may be the turbo charged engine to drive your practice, but your staff is the fuel.

As the team leader, you need to set protocol and observe how your staff interacts with your patients. Listen to the conversations your team has with patients, not the words but the atmosphere. As an example, if there is laughing coming out of the operatory, things are good.

For many dentists that micro-manage their practice this new way of thinking may be challenging because it may require a change in the approach to management. You may have to reorganize the formats of your morning huddle and bi-monthly team meetings, assuming you have them.

Don’t assume that you can change protocol on your own; most of us are too close to the forest to see the trees so some outside observation is always helpful. However, if you are going to try re-setting your business plan on your own, please remember your team and learn how to listen. By listening to everyone with a truly open mind you will be able to make informed decisions.

Please feel free to contact me at any time with any questions or concerns.

Product Review – BioActive Materials……………………………………………………….

Bioactive materials that are strong, esthetic and long-lasting offer an alternative to traditional composites that are strong and esthetic but are passive and without bioactive potential materials, and to glass ionomers that are bioactive but have poor esthetics and undesirable physical properties.

The development of bioactive materials is inspired by nature, where water is the source of life. In the oral cavity, saliva is the life source and is rich with water, proteins and ionic components.

Saliva is a natural caries protection agent and contains the minerals that maintain the integrity of the enamel surface. It helps maintain the health of hard and soft tissues, removes waste, and is the first line of defense against microbial invasion.

The oral environment is exposed to continuous pH cycles, and saliva and tooth structure participate in an endless cycle of mineral exchange. When the pH is low, the demineralization process releases calcium and phosphate ions from the tooth surface. As the pH rises, these ions are available to interact with fluoride ions in our saliva.

Bioactive materials imitate nature and participate in this dynamic ionic exchange. They are water-based or contain zones or phases of water and continuously release and recharge their ionic components. They react to the changes in the oral environment to bring about advantageous changes in the properties of saliva and the materials themselves. This is often referred to as “smart” behavior.6

To read more on Activia BioActive, log onto:

For more information, log onto:

Dentistry Beyond the Mouth……………………………………………………………………

The Elephant in the Room and Being at Ground Zero!

It’s happening! Being connected has its privileges – and opportunities! In the middle of ‘life-in-the-healthcare-fast-lane’ sits the proverbial ‘elephant-in-the-room’, with its many imponderables, namely “healthcare reform”. Some pretend it isn’t real; others are trying to not think about it; and others are embracing it. No answers here – except maybe one…

Einstein is quoted as saying that “within every difficulty, lies opportunity”. Certainly, healthcare reform with its uncertainties and challenges is giving us a new and as yet unresolved set of “difficulties” to deal with. Regardless of how it settles out, there is a ‘silver-lining’ – and that is it’s too expensive to be sick!

Have you noticed? The much malingering “wellness” movement is being born again – right before our eyes! Pushed forward by very large and significant and global market forces that reach down into ever life and every pocketbook.

Have you determined yet to be part of this movement? Do you know how? Do you even see it! Will you take advantage of the rising tide – this new wave of opportunity – to position your practice and professional career and your skill-sets to be a beneficiary? It’s not too late! In fact – it’s perfect timing.

While some worry that there is no money or career or opportunity in wellness, those who “get it” see otherwise. The bottom-line, the key, is to recognize that one has to “get well” before they can “be” well – let alone “stay” well. Contrary to the ‘wellness doomsayers’, nothing has changed in the amount of disease that needs to be “fixed”. If anything, it’s getting worse with every fast-food store and with every soda-pop and donut pastry consumed, and with every TV show sat through and every mile not walked and every tooth not flossed. (Getting the picture?)

What has changed is the growing swell of people who recognize (or can and will be shown how/why – by you, the media, insurance companies, and their physicians) that becoming healthy is better and less expensive than staying diseased. Think of all the work to be done to get them there. It will take a few generations. We are at the precipice of a new age, the dawn of a new era – where healthcare requires new products, new skillsets and new mindsets.

Question: Does this describe you? Will it include you?

To read the rest of this article, log onto:

The Office Manager Blog:………………………………………………………………………..

image001  5 Top Reports Every Doctor Should Look At!

I received an e-mail from a doctor the other day that had a situation that needed attention. Her clinical team had started posting procedures in the patient chart and had accidently posted a root canal as “complete” rather than “existing.” The root canal was not only posted to the patient’s ledger, but it was also sent electronically to the insurance company and paid. The patient called concerned about the EOB that he received and wondering why the office had billed his insurance company for a root canal he never had. When the doctor asked me what kind of safeguards she could put into place for her clinical team, my response was that this issue was an administrative boo-boo, not a clinical mistake.

As the doctor in the practice, I understand that you went to dental school to create beautiful smiles and improve the health of your patients. However, you are still a business owner and knowing what is going on in your business is certainly worth your time.

With that in mind, here are my five most critical reports every doctor should look at . . .

To read the rest of Dayna’s Blog, log onto:

Tips from the MADOM…………………………………………………………………………….

image004  Metropolitan Association of Dental Office Managers!

The next meeting is being hosted by Asteto Dent Lab for Sunday, July 27th. The day will start at 9:00 AM at the Weehawken Sheraton with a 2 part, 2 hour seminar on the Social Media and how to correctly analyze your production utilizing your software data. Then at 11:3, we’re boarding The Spirit of NJ and sailing around The Hudson Harbor, returning to Weehawken at 2:00 PM, so stay tuned for more details.

To register, call: Asteto Dent Lab @ 973-763-1000

AADOM Information:

AADOM’s Virtual Study Club. To view the full schedule, log onto:

The Magic of Management……………………………………………………………………….

In-Sight from the Mouse!

A Global Business Truth, It’s a Small World!

April 10, 2014 by Bruce Jones, Programming Director, Disney Institute

Today, the iconic “it’s a small world” attraction at Disneyland celebrates its Golden anniversary. Originally created for the 1964 New York World’s Fair by Walt Disney in support of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the attraction was later relocated to Disneyland Park. Recognized by the classic song, written and composed by Richard and Robert Sherman, “it’s a small world” teaches the business world a global lesson.

There’s so much that we share that its time were aware, It’s a small world after all.

These words ring true for your organization, your clients, your customers and your competition. Often times, individuals can get caught up in the daily stress, priority lists, full inboxes and meetings to recognize the fact that that everyone they interact with has a story. Despite modern technological advances that limit face-to-face communication, the human connection remains at the heart of all organizations.

How can this truth impact your organization?

To read more, log onto:

This Week Dentistry: ……………………………………………………………………………..


Americans with Disabilities Act: Civil penalties adjusted for inflation

April 21, 2014 By Craig Palmer, ADA News staff

Washington—The Department of Justice issued a final rule increasing civil penalties for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which covers “professional offices of health care providers” including dental offices. This rule is effective April 27, 2014, according to the March 28 Federal Register notice. However, the DOJ announcement said, “The new maximums apply only to violations occurring on or after April 28, 2014.”

The final rule “adjusts for inflation” civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “For the Americans with Disabilities Act, this adjustment increases the maximum civil penalty for a first violation under Title III from $55,000 to $75,000; for a subsequent violation the new maximum is $150,000.00” the DOJ said.

Title III of the AwDA covers 12 types of public accommodations, a category that includes as covered service establishments “professional offices of health care providers” and “hospitals.” A professional office of a health care provider is a location where a state-regulated professional provides physical or mental health services to the public, according to the DOJ Title III technical assistance manual.

Title III imposes a number of requirements on public accommodations, such as taking certain steps to make their facilities accessible, making reasonable modifications in policies, practices and procedures that would deny equal access to individuals with disabilities, and furnishing auxiliary aids when necessary to ensure effective communication.

Henry Schein Outlet Center…………………………………………………………………….

Overstock – Reconditioned – Demo

For the Special of the Week or More Outlet Store Offers, Call Cliff @ 201-321-7494


Air Techniques SPECTRA CARIES DETECTION W/SOFTWARE Condition: Demo Part Number: 698-0724-D

Manufacturer Part Number: D4000 Catalog Price: $4,199.99 Special Price: $1,999.00

Warranty: 3-YearThe Spectra System consists of a toothbrush-sized, fluorescence-based handpiece for capturing images and imaging software for displaying images and is ideal for aiding in the detection of caries as practiced in today’s modern dental operatories. The Spectra system provides the following benefits:

  • Motivates the patient to carry out a professional tooth cleaning
  • Aids in the detection of carries
  • Allows images to be saved so that patient oral hygiene may be tracked over time
  • Ideal complement to an X-ray imaging system for patient care
  • Light-weight, one-piece, maneuverable Spectra handpiece has a quick disconnect feature allowing it to be quickly detached and easily carried between patient operatories for use with other Spectra System components.


Cliff’s Tips for Today …Sunday April 20, 2014……………………………………………

  • What % of your collection need to be allocated to your annual budget? Do you know?
  • Have you discussed in detail you P&E (profit & loss) statement with your financial advisor?
  • Are you aware of the average cost of the different areas of of your practice?
  • When was the last time you evaluated your UCR fee schedule?
  • Have you scheduled a time to review Q1-2014 with your financial advisor?
  • Do you know how you compare to other local dental practices?

If you haven’t answered YES to all of these questions, maybe it’s time we had a chat…


The winter was long & tough. Maybe next year,

You can be in the Sun!

Coming Soon, Transitions!

No matter if you want to buy or sell, or maybe you are thinking about taking on an associate or becoming one. Or, are you interested in having a group of dental practices, This 2 hour, CE accredited, session is designed for the Professional and their life partners. It’s all about ideas & tips about your future and how to get there. Look out for details!

April 20, 2014 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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