People are people. Money should never drive relationships. Dentistry is more than a business. You’ve heard me make these statements many, many times, but dentistry is also a business. If we didn’t make money from dentistry, we’d have to do something else.
This balance between people and money is no more apparent than when and how we treat the poor. The State does not pay us nearly as much as our standard fees. This forces us to make some compromises. Hopefully, not essential ones. Here are my ideas:
1. One half hour cleanings. This is too fast to be thorough, but it’s better than nothing. Cavitron the first time. Try to develop the relationship. Give them brush, floss, our PC booklet. Stress homecare. Stress how valuable 6-month cleanings are. In 1-2 years they can become healthy. Once they are healthy, you can do a complete cleaning in ½ hour!
2. Maintain their dignity. Stress how important they are to the process. Their homecare is the key to their success. They can be as healthy as rich person, but they will need to do more for themselves.
To get signed off on this section, you must read through Dr. Smith’s approach on treating the poor that he has presented to state legislators and a past state dental director. It is located at the very bottom of Dr. Smith’s page: http://healthparkdentistry.com/people/general-dentists/dr-smith/