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A new year brings a fresh start, a blank slate and new opportunities. I wanted to know more about your #1 priorities for 2017 so I reached out to some of you to find out what’s on your to-do lists for the year. While there are challenges to overcome, there’s also optimism about the future and, for many, 2017 is going to be a year of refinement, re-invention and exploring new directions. From veterans to newcomers and operations large and small, priorities run the gamut; here’s a look at a few of them:
Secure Group Health Insurance. Owner Colin Gibb has decided that one of the most important ways to position Red Mountain Dental Arts in Mesa, AZ, for the future is to begin offering health insurance and even pay 100% of the premium. After a lot of research, he’s about to get a commitment for an excellent plan through United Health Care; he’s also applied for a Section 125 Premium Only Plan that will cost him $150, is good for 10 years and allows his employees...
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- October 2016
Back in 1981, the Board of Directors of the NADL began its search for a new association management group to breathe new life into what had become a rather sleepy organization.
For a while after its new Association Executive was installed, the NADL became a hot organization. In 1984, it introduced a snazzy, newly designed and renamed magazine [Trends & Techniques in the Contemporary Dental Laboratory] with a great tagline: “T&T is dynamite” and reasserted itself as an educational organization.
Unfortunately, within a decade the Association Director imploded, leaving the Board of Directors (who are lab owners and managers) to pick up the pieces. A group of large lab owners stepped up to give the NADL its full support by donating their time and money in its hour of need. They formed committees, created a five-year plan and introduced the excellent, motivational Vision21 program that enables attendees to network while keeping abreast of industry news, views and...
- June 2016
“Social media is a great tool for developing brand recognition while also promoting audience engagement and providing opportunities to convert users into customers,” says Jayme Hong, CEO, IDOC Dental Lab, a 40-person laboratory in Orange, CA.
- February 2015
The first part of LMT’s comprehensive, multi-issue State of the Industry 2015 coverage offers an in-depth look at the key trends impacting laboratory operators today.
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- April 2014
More than 40 technicians from D&S Dental Laboratory made the trip to LAB DAY Chicago, most of them riding together on a chartered bus from the lab’s Waunakee, WI location. “We always look forward to LAB DAY Chicago to catch up on industry news and see new, exciting developments from vendors. The education and networking opportunities are especially valuable, with so many knowledgeable people from across the country in one place,” says Travis Zick, President, D&S Dental Laboratory. “Our technicians enjoy talking to exhibitors, visiting with other technicians, and learning a few tips they can bring back and implement in their daily work. For the young technicians, getting outside the lab and seeing the imprint of the industry as a whole is a valuable, eye-opening experience.”
- September 2013
On the heels of LMT's September special coverage, The Changing Landscape of Dentistry, about the changing demographics, business models and other factors influencing your client base, the ADA just released an in-depth report, A Profession in Transition: Key Forces Reshaping the Dental Landscape, touching on many of the same topics.
Here are some key findings from the report:
Per capita expenditures are expected to grow over the coming decades, but at a very slow rate. In 2010, per capita dental expenditures were $269. Projected expenditures range from a conservative $277 to an optimistic $325 by 2040.
Older Americans are expected to account for a growing share of dental expenditures over the coming decades. Specifically, Seniors ages 60-79 will account for about 32% of all dental expenditures by 2040, followed by children with about 24%. The largest growth will be in adults ages 70-79 whose proportion of total expenditures is expected to double between 2010 and 2040.
Between 1986 and 2001, seven dental schools closed their doors. However, in the past several years, that trend has reversed: To meet the growing demand for careers in dentistry, seven new predoctoral dental programs opened in the U.S. since 2011, bringing the total number of active schools to 65. Add to that the fact that several existing schools* are investing in and/or expanding their facilities or programs and it's clear: dental education is booming.
The above map shows the new dental schools opened in the past two years.
*These dental schools have either recently expanded their enrollment and/or facilities or are in the process of doing so: University of North Carolina School of Dentistry, Chapel Hill, NC; University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry, San Francisco, CA; Marquette University School of Dentistry, Milwaukee, WI; Georgia Health Sciences University College of Dental Medicine, Augusta, GA; University of Louisville School of Dentistry, Louisville, KY;...
Although large, professionally managed group practices still only represent a small segment (7 to 8%) of the dental profession, their explosive growth in the last few years indicates that the trend will continue. That means there's also a growing opportunity for dental technicians at these practices' on-site or centralized laboratories.
Given the size of the companies, many of these practices offer comprehensive benefits packages, training programs and opportunities for advancement that are often difficult to find in small, independent laboratories. It's also a great opportunity for technicians and dentists to work collaboratively with patients. "Our lead technicians often have an opportunity to meet the patient to look at a try-in or help select a tooth shape or size, for example," says Mike Thomas, Vice President of Laboratory Operations, Affordable Dentures Dental Laboratories (ADDL). "We like our technicians to think of their role as a partner in service, working together with the...
The changing demographics of the dental field could bode well for laboratories. There are more general practitioners and prosthodontists, more dental consumers and fewer laboratories. In other words, the potential client base per laboratory is growing.
Here's a look at the shifting demographics between 1998 and 2011:
The number of laboratories declined 12.5%, from approximately 12,000 to 10,500. The number of GPs and prosthodontists increased 17%, from 133,623 to 156,011. This means the ratio of dentists to labs increased from 11:1 to 15:1.
The ratio of adult patients (20 years or older) to dentists increased from 1,441:1 to 1,466:1.
Further analysis of patients 45 years or older—the most likely sector of the population to receive restorative work—shows an increase of 36% during this timeframe. In 1998, there were 686 patients for every dentist; in 2011, the ratio was 796:1.
And going forward, it seems these trends will continue:
The dentist population is expected...
- August 2012
For me, one of the greatest highs of our LAB DAY shows is returning home afterwards, brim-full of new ideas, juiced with the energy and creative strategies I pick up from you—our participants and clinicians—when I hear your presentations or we meet on the show floor.
One thing I noticed this year in particular is that the level of competitiveness among vendors at the show has ratcheted up several notches. It was Show- and-Tell in all its glory.
For example, all of the vendors on the Ballroom Level had elaborate displays, fantastic videos, excellent presentations and mouthwatering spreads. For sure, no one went hungry at this LAB DAY.
Sirona doubled its impact—its 27-1/2-year Cerec Anniversary event in Las Vegas is this August—by featuring dressed-to-the-hilt Las Vegas showgirls complete with peacock-like feather headdresses (if you were there, you couldn't miss them)! Core3D brought us the ever-so-sleek-and-sexy Women in Black. Banners hung from walls and jockeyed...
- September 2011
D4D Technologies LLC announces the appointment of Donald (âDonâ) L. Tuttle as the companyâs new President and Chief Executive Officer, effective August 1.
Tufts University School of Dental Medicineâs Postgraduate Prosthodontics Division is offering an advanced level of education in dental technology and related research to dental technologists.
- August 2011
Astra Tech Dental District Sales Manager Michael Reina recently competed in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) Long Island Chapter's "Man & Woman of the Year" campaign to honor his uncle.
Aspen Dental, having recently opened its 300th office nationwide, donated 700 pounds of Lucitone to two dental technology schools, Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, IA, and Bates Technical C
- July 2011
Founder and President/CEO of Talladium, Inc., Edward Joseph Harms, 67, died June 26, 2011, at his home in Valencia, CA.
A supporter of educational initiatives, Heraeus offers instructional videos free to dental teams and patients, teaching effective techniques and procedures.
- June 2011
On June 22, AstraZeneca announced that it has agreed to sell its Astra Tech business to Dentsply for approximately $1.8 billion in cash.
Align Technology, Inc. announces that Cadent's orthodontic full-arch scanning process can now be used with Invisalign treatment.
On September 9, world-renowned technician Claude Sieber from Basil, Switzerland is presenting Visual Elements Pushed to the Limits at New York City College of Technology (NYCCT).
Candulor is organizing the first North American competition, giving U.S. and Canadian contestants the opportunity to display their proficiency in the field of removable dentures.
In appreciation of its loyal customers, Lincoln Dental is offering a Rewards Program.
Wieland Technik extends global distribution of Dental Wings Zenotech S50 Scanner to include the U.S. and Canada.
Thanks to three generous product donations from Cosmedent, Inc., 21 non-profit affiliates of the National Children's Oral Health Foundation: America's Toothfairy® (NCOHF) are delivering dental care to