Why Now is the Time to Implement your Dental Membership Plan; Data Validates the ROI
As dental practices prepare to re-open their doors post COVID-19 crisis, having an expertly designed and priced membership plan in place will be critical. At Kleer, we have seen an increase in dentists who are ready to implement our membership plan right now—and for good reasons. They have the time, it’s free to implement, everything can be done virtually, and the value to patients and their practice is great.
Let’s take a look at why dental membership plans are so important right now. First, the sweeping dental practice closures due to the crisis have created a backlog of patients with dental care treatment needs, from preventative to restorative and cosmetic. When practice doors re-open, patients will want to address their oral care needs, but they will be sensitive to price due to losses of jobs, salaries and benefits. Having a dental membership plan in place will enable your patients to access the care they need in a budget-friendly way.
Also, by making it easier and more affordable for patients to get the care they need, a membership plan will help your practice bounce back from the crisis. If your plan is designed and priced correctly, your membership plan patients will visit two to three times more than uninsured patients and generate twice the revenue.
Data Validates the ROI of Dental Membership Plans
On March 25, 2020, Kleer’s CEO Dave Monahan hosted a webinar titled “Data Validates the ROI of Dental Membership Plans,” in which he dove into those statistics. In the webinar, Dave shared Kleer practice data that validates the value of subscription dentistry—including the significant increases in uninsured patient visits, new patients, payments, treatment revenue and hygiene revenue.
Below is a portion of the webinar presentation transcript. Dive into all the details of the “membership club effect” and potential ROI for your practice by watching the full playback of this webinar available here.
Whether you already have a membership or are thinking about launching one, this is a webinar you won’t want to miss—plus it’s worth 1 CE through CE Zoom.
When your practice re-opens as the crisis lifts, consider how you can better serve your growingly uninsured patient base while generating additional revenue that can jump start your practice.
Webinar Transcript Excerpt:
“You just need to understand what you're trying to do with your dental membership plan. What are your patients going to react to, and what do the demographics look like? What type of treatment do they need? It's all customized. You control it.
A key part is balancing patient and practice value. We've seen this across thousands of dental practices. You need to get that value balance right. You don't want to overprice it. You don't want to underprice it. You want to put it right in the middle where it's good for your practice, and you're going to be a good, profitable business coming from this. But also, from your patients’ perspective, they're getting good value by committing to your practice over the course of a year. And by the way, they're going to commit much more than one year. Typical renewal rates are 80-plus percent. They're committing for multiple years at the end of the day, so they want some value for that. And again, it's creating a mutually beneficial relationship, as I described before.
What this creates is something we're calling the “membership club effect.” These patients who get on your membership plan—their uncertainty I talked about before and feeling exposed…it goes away. They feel good that they're improving their oral health. This is shown by the discussions we've had with patients about membership plans. Once they're on them, how do they feel? They feel good. They're taking steps towards better oral health. They feel financially savvy. They now have a plan. “It has discounts in it, right? I might be paying on a monthly basis or I might be paying up front and getting a discount for that. I feel savvy. I trust my dentist.”
I talked about in the beginning, they don't want complicated terms or things they don't understand. Make it direct. Make it transparent. Make it simple. There are no deductibles, no annual maximums, no waiting periods, no pre-approvals. Patients hate these things, and they can't stand these things. This is where if they’re buying insurance, they get bogged down into: “I just don't understand this plan. I don't understand what this plan is going to give me. I know they're going to get me.” Just get rid of all that stuff, and just make it really simple.
What ends up happening is patients trust you because you've done that. They feel special. Now they're a member of your practice. We often tell practices to give little presents to the patients who are members when they walk in the door. Make them feel good. Thank them. Just look them in the eye and say thank you. They also have peace of mind. They now have coverage and they feel that, “If something happens down the road, I'm at least not going to have to pay full price and not know what I should or shouldn't pay. I have coverage. I have some peace of mind with that.”
A membership plan offers a mutually beneficial relationship. On the patient benefits side, it's personalized. We're going to customize this based on the needs of your patients. This can take all kinds of different paths, depending on your patient population and how you like to treat your patients. But it's personalized. What does the practice get for that as a sort of mutually beneficial piece of this? They [dental staff] design the plan. They know what their patients want. They know what their practices need to do in order to be a successful practice and get the care to their patients that they need. It's a mutual benefit; each side gets something. The patient gets a simple, transparent term. They can trust that. What does a practice get in return for that? A loyal patient who comes in regularly, and I'll show data. The next section is going to go through the data on visits and how much per treatment they accept.
Now I’m going to move into results. I'm going to go through three or four studies. Also, I'll go into a little detail on some of the studies. But then, I'm going to pull back and not go through all because it’ll get sort of redundant. But the net is, these are random practices across 3,200 dentists across 50 states that we work with. You can see the study included different types of practices. I'll show some of these individually. But they include independent practices, single location, and multiple locations. Some are fee for service, some are insurance-based. We have group practices. We have pediatric practices. We have gotten some comments in the past that this might work for general but doesn't work pediatric. Or, this might work for general or independent but might not work for a group. What we see in the data is that it doesn't matter… whatever practice you have, the membership works. And the data I'm going to show is straight from the practice management systems of these practices.
If you take the average of all the practices that we've looked at, this is amazing. They basically have doubled production for their membership plan patients versus the patients that don't have coverage. It crosses hygiene and treatment. I think it was a little bit of surprise to practices we work with. If you're going to give somebody a subscription and you discount the subscription in order to get your hygiene, wouldn't that mean less hygiene revenue? The answer is no.
You actually get more revenue because these patients are actually coming in. They're paying for the hygiene visits, and they're coming in and getting them. There are other treatments happening when they're in the in the chair. That can be hygiene treatment, or it can be restorative. It could be other treatment. But the net is, hygiene, on an average, went up 70 percent. Then the real kicker is then the treatment they accepted was 2.3 times more than uncovered patients. And, that's pretty amazing when you think about it. I'm going to get into why that is. But the net is, twice the amount of treatment accepted than if you don't have coverage.”