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What are Dental Support Organizations

Updated: Aug 16, 2023

Welcome to Dentistry Support's Free Training! In this free training, we will be chatting about the concepts of Dental Support Organizations (DSOs) and privately owned dental practices.

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As dental professionals navigate their career paths and explore practice ownership options, it is essential to have a thorough understanding of these models. Join us as we explore the world of DSOs and privately owned practices, uncovering the benefits and personal preferences associated with each.

Section 1: Dental Support Organizations (DSOs):

1.1 Definition and Overview: Dental Support Organizations (DSOs) are management and support entities that provide a range of administrative, financial, and operational services to dental practices. By partnering with DSOs, dental practices can streamline their operations, enhance efficiency, and drive practice growth. DSOs offer comprehensive administrative support, access to advanced technology, and business development opportunities.

1.2 Benefits of Partnering with a DSO:

  • Administrative Support: DSOs have dedicated teams that handle various administrative tasks, such as billing, insurance management, marketing, and human resources. This support allows dental professionals to focus more on providing exceptional patient care.

  • Access to Advanced Resources: DSOs often invest in state-of-the-art dental technologies, equipment, and infrastructure. By partnering with a DSO, dental practices can gain access to these resources, enabling them to deliver advanced treatments and improve the overall patient experience.

  • Business Growth and Expansion: DSOs bring business expertise and resources to the table, assisting dental practices in expanding their reach, opening new locations, and attracting more patients. This support fosters practice growth and development opportunities.

Section 2: Privately Owned Dental Practices: 2.1 Definition and Overview: Privately owned dental practices are independent practices owned and operated by individual dentists or small groups of dentists. In this model, practice owners have complete control over all aspects of the practice, including administrative decisions, treatment approaches, and the overall patient experience.

2.2 Benefits of Privately Owned Dental Practices:

  • Autonomy and Flexibility: Private practice owners enjoy the freedom to make all decisions regarding their practice, including hiring, treatment philosophies, and business strategies. This autonomy allows for flexibility and the ability to tailor the practice according to the owner's unique vision.

  • Patient Relationships: Private practice owners often have the opportunity to build strong, long-lasting relationships with their patients. This personal connection fosters trust, loyalty, and a sense of community within the practice.

  • Individualized Approach: Private practice owners can develop their own treatment philosophies and tailor their services to meet the specific needs and preferences of their patients. This individualized approach allows for a more personalized patient experience.

Section 3: Personal Preference: Choosing Between DSOs and Privately Owned Practices: 3.1 Factors to Consider: When deciding between joining a DSO or owning a private practice, several factors should be taken into account. Dentists should consider their career goals, desired level of administrative involvement, financial considerations, and long-term aspirations.

3.2 Positives of Both Models:

  • DSOs offer the advantages of administrative support, access to resources, and business growth opportunities. Dentists can focus on patient care while benefiting from the expertise of the DSO's management team. DSOs provide a structured environment that allows dental professionals to thrive.

  • Privately owned practices provide the benefits of autonomy, personalized patient relationships, and the ability to shape the practice according to the owner's unique vision. Practice owners have full control over all aspects of their practice and can tailor it to their individual preferences. Private practices offer the opportunity for creative expression and the ability to build a practice that truly reflects the owner's values.

We have explored the benefits and intricacies of both models, recognizing the advantages associated with each. The decision to join a DSO or own a private practice ultimately depends on personal preferences, career goals, and desired levels of administrative involvement. Dentistry Support is here to support you on your journey, providing the necessary guidance and resources for your professional growth and success. Embrace the opportunities that both DSOs and private practices offer, and choose the path that aligns with your vision and aspirations. Remember, your career in dentistry is unique, and the choice is yours to make.

Whether you choose to go either route a great way to balance out responsibilities is to invest in lower cost options for running operations such as a remote offsite team. Here at Dentistry Support, we focus on delivering results and simplifying everything about your dental office. Learn about us here or schedule a call today to learn more.


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To learn more about Sarah Beth Herman, the author of all free training content you can read her bio here. These materials are intended to provide helpful information to dentists and dental team members. They are in no way a substitute for actual professional advice based on your unique facts and circumstances. This content is not intended or offered, nor should it be taken, as legal or other professional advice. You should always consult with your own professional advisors (e.g. attorney, accountant, or insurance carrier). To the extent, Dentistry Support ®has included links to any third-party website (s), Dentistry Support ® intends no endorsement of their content and implies no affiliation with the organizations that provide their content. Further, Dentistry Support ® makes no representations or warranties about the information provided on those sites. You can view our privacy policy and terms and conditions by clicking those pages in the footer of our website.

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