Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran
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263 The Practice Triage with Eric Nuss : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

263 The Practice Triage with Eric Nuss : Dentistry Uncensored with Howard Farran

12/20/2015 2:00:00 AM   |   Comments: 0   |   Views: 414

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• Tools for consultants

• The cost savings of same-day dentistry

VIDEO - HSP #263 - Eric Nuss

• Case acceptance, and a lot more!

Eric Nuss, MBA, leads the Business Solutions department of Henry Schein Dental. There, he developed and now leads an educational program for dentists, the Dental Business Institute. In addition to 12 years of industry experience, he has a bachelor's degree in education and a master's degree in business. 

Contact Eric at (800) 372-4346 or at

Howard: I'm with Eric Nuss, a very exciting friend who's with the ... What is it? Hidden [inaudible 00:00:13] Business Solutions?

Eric: [Tall 00:00:14] Business Solutions, correct.

Howard: You work basically with all my friends. Tell them all the friends you work with.

Eric: On the consulting side it would be Kerry Strain, Charles Blair, Matt Krieger from Million Dollar PPO, Wendy Briggs from Team Training Institute, with a house brand of consulting services called 360 Practice Development and then all the service providers that are, in essence, providing business service outsourcing to our customer base. This includes everything from marketing to HR, IT support, compliance training, operations support. Oftentimes we'll talk to a doctor and they'll say after meeting with a consultant, these all sound like really great ideas, who's going to get this done? The consultant will say well, you are doctor. The doctor says, oh no, that's not something I want to do myself, could you do it? 

The consultant, most often, doesn't have the bandwidth or the support to be able to really execute so we have operational temporary support where they act as, in essence, a temporary CFO or COO for a period of time. Literally, everything from payroll services to operational execution, we can provide service through. That's really my responsibility is consulting and business services.

Howard: Do those consultants all work together or are those separate programs?

Eric: They're all separate. They all are their own independent brand.

Howard: Go over those four brands.

Eric: Okay, Kerry Strain is really a generalist in practice management consulting. His forte is his background is in accounting. He's got a huge team. They'll do everything in practice management but primarily where we see the best application for Kerry Strain is front office efficiency, collection systems, accounts receivable, accounts payable, how are we getting the money. 

On the exact opposite end of the spectrum is Matt Krieger with Million Dollar PPO, who will talk more specifically about optimization and efficiency on the clinical side. [crosstalk 00:02:20]

Howard: That's Matt Lowe?

Eric: Matt Krieger. 

Howard: Matt Kreger?

Eric: Matt Krieger.

Howard: How do you spell that?

Eric: K-R-I-E-G-E-R.

Howard: The Mac, M-A-C?

Eric: M-A-T-T.

Howard: Oh Matt. Matt Krager?

Eric: Krieger.

Howard: Spell it again. K-R-

Eric: K-R-I-E-G-E-R

Howard: What's his forte?

Eric: His business is called Million Dollar PPO. Branding wise, I think maybe a slight misconception, you don't have to be in a PPO in order to work with Matt. What you do need is support in clinical optimization. When we talk about lean systems and lean management from a business score perspective, we talk a lot about waste containment. This is not so much waste containment as much as it is patient flow. How do we get the patient to flow through the business cleanly, succinctly and efficiently? If we're turning over rooms, every time we turn over a room it's a cost of $30 to $50 in time and material costs. If I can eliminate moving a patient from op to op or from op to home and back, I would much rather get some efficiencies doing same day dentistry. The misconception is that same day dentistry is just [cad cam 00:03:32]. Same day dentistry is sealants and fluoride and pit and fissure support and minor cosmetic procedures. It's things that we can do in the [operatory 00:03:43], within the same appointment time, without sending the patient on an escapade to find a new appointment and possibly look for [crosstalk 00:03:54].

Howard: I think I'm confusing that PPO with another ... There's a couple of consulting companies that have PPO in their name.

Eric: But have PPO in their name. Matt Krieger's business role is full service consulting but it's all about optimizing efficiency on the clinical side of the business. They'll do everything that every other practice management consultant would do. If we need to address team harmony and behavior styles and collections and process and so on and so forth, they will absolutely do that, but as far as a differentiation point, what I like to say is not am I going to the emergency room, if I'm going to go to the emergency room and I have a cut on my leg, I don't need them to check my eyes. I need them to look at my leg. Triage the pain, the problem, the source of the issue for why I'm at the emergency room. 

When we talk about the four brands of consulting, I most often am going to triage front office with Kerry Strain. I'll triage back office with Matt Krieger, Million Dollar PPO. I'll triage hygiene with Wendy Briggs who take [crosstalk 00:04:48] training institute.

Howard: She's out of Utah?

Eric: She's out of Utah.

Howard: Where in Utah?

Eric: [crosstalk 00:04:55] Salt Lake.

Howard: Salt Lake?

Eric: Yup. Then if I want to triage ... Million Dollar PPO, Strain, Team Training Institute ... Jameson. If I want to triage patient communication and case acceptance, Jameson, bar none, has that [crosstalk 00:05:12]

Howard: Kathy Jameson?

Eric: Kathy Jameson's business. She's since sold it to Jess Webber. 

Howard: She what?

Eric: That business has been sold to the Webber family. That's their ...

Howard: Oh, I didn't know that.

Eric: Yeah, Kerry and Jess Webber. Kerry is actually Kathy and John's daughter.

Howard: Really?

Eric: That happened about ... The transition has happened over a course of the last, about five years. Yeah, Kathy is really, to some degree, focused more on speaking and less on practice management ongoing consulting.

Howard: Her husband, John, just successfully beat prostate.

Eric: That's right.

Howard: Good for John.

Eric: Yeah.

Howard: He's my buddy.

Eric: Yeah. [crosstalk 00:05:52]

Howard: He's a tough ...

Eric: Creighton grad.

Howard: Yeah, I went to Creighton and ...

Eric: You did?

Howard: Yeah, and I grew up with the ...

Eric: I went to Omaha.

Howard: In Woodstock Kansas, I went to Creighton and he's from Oklahoma.

Eric: Yup.

Howard: He's a tough cookie, man.

Eric: Yeah.

Howard: He got smeared by a pickup truck one time, beat that. Prostate ... he's just a tough old [inaudible 00:06:08].

Eric: Yeah.

Howard: What's Wendy Briggs doing in the hygiene? What is ...

Eric: Her business is called Team Training Institute. She's really, really hyper-focused on how do we create better efficiencies and optimization just from within the hygiene department. When you look at a practice and we can see that patients are haphazardly coming back in the hygiene department but they're not coming back for [perio-therapy 00:06:31] and we're not seeing any referral business, per se, into cosmetics or the doctor side of the business, Wendy is hyper-focused on how do we take care of what we can take care of by the hygienist and then also using the technology and equipment available to that hygienist to then pass forward a lead to the dental clinician, the dentist, for more major service. You know 80% plus of restorative work should come from the hygiene department. People don't just call ...

Howard: 80%?

Eric: For sure. People don't just ... 

Howard: Really?

Eric: Why not? They're there. Why would we not recognize that when we're taking good [inaudible 00:07:09] cameras, when we're seeing the patient recurrently, when we're talking to them about preventive health, when we can address things as they're coming more preventively than reactionary. People don't go to the dentist and say ... People wouldn't say hey doctor, I just want to call and check in and let you know that I need a crown. The patient doesn't ... That well in-tune with oral health to understand exactly the ailment or the problem. Oh doctor, I need to talk to you about periodontal disease. Have you heard of patients in mass coming to the dentist to talk about periodontal disease? It doesn't hurt. It's asymptomatic. It's not bleeding enough for me to be really concerned about.  I mean, it bleeds a little bit but it doesn't bleed that much. Do I really need to see a dentist? 

If the hygienist is talking to the patient, the customer, about here's what we need to do to address your overall health and you need some additional therapy far beyond what we can do in hygiene. You need to see the doctor. The doctor's going to treat you for this, that and the other. 

It's a little bit out of my scope. I'm not a clinician. I didn't grow up to be a dentist but what I've observed over and over again is that the business system or the flow of patients, if we can keep them in one [operatory 00:08:19] and treat them for same-day dentistry. If we can focus on addressing the needs of the patient and understanding what those needs truly are rather than making the assumption that they either have the ability or have the means, treat them like they're a part of your family. Patients tend to respond relatively well. 

Beyond consulting, the one additional point I would throw in there is that the way that we see this, doctors have a recipe card really with three ingredients. There's business acumen that they need to have in order to run a successful business. The most successful businesses have been proven over and again that with a coach or a consultant, produced time and a half to two times more than their counterparts that don't have a coach.

Lastly is this idea of business outsourcing. Who's doing HR? Who's doing marketing? Who's doing IT support? Who's doing compliance training? Those things often get left by the wayside. The unfortunate part for the dentist is that they're under all the same jurisdiction and compliance requirements that Henry Shine is, as a Fortune 500 Company, large and above. Just from an HR compliance standpoint, 97% of everything that Henry Shine has to do, small business has to do as well. Really the differentiation is on benefit supplement support. [crosstalk 00:09:38] It's a broad, broad part of our business.

Howard: Line up [crosstalk 00:09:35] all those ... all of you just mentioned and then there's Ryan and we'll roll them all out in a program.

Eric: Sounds great.

Howard: Your body guard there ...

Eric: Yeah, my body guard.

Howard: ... is ready to pull [crosstalk 00:09:48] Thanks for coming and talking to me.

Eric: Absolutely.

Howard: All right, buddy. Bye-bye.

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