Accelerated Hygiene - Could it Work in Your Dental Practice
Every dental practice is different, with different needs and goals. We have been helping to discover golden opportunities in dental practices since 2004. We strive to meet the needs of every dentist and client with solutions that are tailored around the individual needs of the dental practice.
As a hygienist, my average daily production is approximately $1800 a day. I would be paid on commission and was given tools to increase my production.
I want to train your hygienists to go beyond every clinical goal they have set! It doesn't matter if your hygienist uses a laser, is doing accelerated hygiene, or has a million patients. What matters is that you are billing correctly and that each patient is being treated professionally and given every opportunity to better their oral health.
If your hygienist is booked solid for the next 3-6 months, it may be time to add a hygienist or do accelerated / assisted hygiene.
In some areas, especially rural areas, finding an awesome and qualified hygienist is exceptionally hard. Here are some key facts to consider when hiring a hygienist.
The hygiene department will contribute 23%-35% of gross practice production.
75% of restorative needs are discovered in hygiene patient visits.
One-third of hygiene codes will be periodontal codes (based on the practice having 20-25 adult, New Patients each month).
Downtime should be no higher than 5% of available time.
Hygienists should produce about three times their wages.
Hygienists are optimally positioned to promote restorative and elective procedures and should serve as the second set of eyes for the dentist.
Of all the responsibilities in a dental practice, there is nothing more important than the schedule. However, the hygiene schedule is often the least important to your employees (if there is a cancellation, your staff has downtime or time to catch up on other things).
In most practices I visit, there is often at least two open appointments in the hygiene schedule each day. If the typical cost of a hygiene visit is $165, two openings per day could cost your practice $66,000 per year in lost productivity. This fact drastically influences a dental practices profitability, significantly costing the practice in overhead costs and doesn’t even count the loss of revenue your hygiene schedule can stream to your restorative schedule!
My favorite pay arrangement for hygienists is a commission rate with a minimum daily pay. This pay rate works amazing for assisted /accelerated hygiene. Although this system can be nearly as effective with hour long appointments per hygienist.
The minimum daily pay protects the hygienist in those instances when the schedule falls apart, and the commission is a set production percentage which gives the hygienist an incentive to work efficiently and productively. For example, let’s say the minimum pay is $250 a day and the daily production goal is $1800 adjusted production. In this case, the hygienist has a designated assistant to help turn over rooms, perio chart, polish, take radiographs, and assist the doctor in exams. (I recommend the assistant doing the radiographs and polishing), then have the hygienist scale, focus on educating the patient and note any findings he or she sees, have the doctor come in with the assistant for an exam. (Some doctors will choose to pay the hygienist the production for radiographs, some choose to not, this can be a negotiation and will depend on the doctor’s time, budget and schedule as well).
The hygienist is booked every half hour, out of 2 rooms (allowing 1 hour for each patient) this allows the assistant to do the less profitable work, while maximizing the hygiene production for the day. In a case as this, the hygienist could easily produce $1600 adjusted production making $480 a day.
Some dentist’s and hygienist’s do not agree or want to work this way, which is fine. Every practice is different and has different needs. We strive to make different systems work in each individual practice.