Dos and don'ts for increasing per-patient production

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Increase production-per-patient by 15% annually

Since the dental economy became more challenging, most dentists have been looking for ways to increase production. Generating more referrals, bringing in new patients, adding services -- all will work, but there's another approach that can also yield excellent results. Measure and begin tracking production per patient, then implement strategies to raise that number.

Give every patient, not only new patients, a comprehensive exam every year and use the results to create a comprehensive treatment plan. Then, using a combination of case presentations and periodic reminders about treatment recommendations, you will see your per-patient numbers grow. A realistic target is an increase of 15% a year.


Take the time to identify new treatment options for patients. As you add services and patients' needs change over time, be on the lookout for new ways you can improve their oral health, function or appearance. Also, if older dental work begins to deteriorate, be proactive about upgrading it.


Don't make assumptions about what patients may want. Even patients you've had for years may surprise you about the kinds of treatment they'd be interested in. Make sure they're aware of all the services you can provide for them, and let them decide what they want.

Roger P. Levin, DDS, is the chairman and CEO of practice management consulting firm Levin Group. You can connect with Levin Group on Facebook and Twitter (@Levin_Group) to learn more strategies and share ideas. Also, check out Dr. Levin's free practice management videos at

The comments and observations expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions of, nor should they be construed as an endorsement or admonishment of any particular idea, vendor, or organization.

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