Dental State of the Union

The U.S. economy as well as the rapidly changing healthcare delivery system has taken its toll and dentistry in the United States is in a period of transition.  “Mastering the business of dentistry is still the greatest challenge faced by today’s dentists,” stated Dr. Roger Levin.  “This lack of business knowledge and skills prevents doctors from reaching their full income potential, costing them hundreds of thousands in lost earnings throughout their career,” says Dr. Levin.

The Dental Economics / Levin Group Annual Survey and Research Report was recently published.  This ninth installment of the dental practice survey received a record number of responses.  Here are some highlights of the 2015 survey’s findings:

90% of respondents report working full time; last year that figure was 80%.

88% of those surveyed expect to be 61 or older when they retire.

74% reported using social media to market their dental practices.

64% claim to expect ending up 2015 with higher production than in 2014.

56% stated they have increased their number of active patients during 2015.

44% reported satisfaction of being their own boss.

40% of those surveyed stated they are increasing the use of third-party financing.

32% of respondents stated that their most difficult problem as a practice owner is identifying improvements for inefficient systems.

The survey also found an increase of elective treatments, which now make up over 28% of production.  Proponents of effective marketing will find interesting the analysis of social media.  The report shows that practices engaged in social media acquired nearly 38% more new patients than those practices which did not utilize social media.

Dr. Levin notes that “the dental profession as a whole is mired in a production plateau” and “practice growth now requires a higher level of business knowledge and skill than in the past.”  Correspondingly, the survey found that a mere 6% of dentists like managing the business aspects of their practices.

This year’s survey as well as past surveys can be found here.


Contact ABISA, a consultancy specializing in solo and small group practice management.  Visit us at

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