Gem Publishing September 2018

Improving the Health and Longevity of 3,000,000 People Our Gems Family Mission By Dr. Tom “The Gems Guy” Orent

We’ve laser-locked our focus on this mission because, unfortunately, the quality of care in dentistry is on the decline. We believe that, as a profession, we can and should provide better care and do more for our patients. We do not consistently offer the very best possible long-term complete dentistry for each and every patient without bias or exception. The decline in the quality of care in dentistry is not your fault. There are many powerful external forces at work that have caused a shift in our profession. The “golden era” of dentistry has long-since passed, which is a shame, not just for our practices but for our patients as well. In the ‘60s and ‘70s, a dentist could hang a shingle and fill chairs beyond capacity with ease. The opportunity to make a living and build a successful practice was all but guaranteed. But at the tail end of the golden era, insurance and dentistry collided to create a perfect storm. When dental insurance first arrived on the scene, patients had decent insurance maximums — most were $1,000–$2,000, which could cover a significant chunk of the treatment a patient needed in the 1970s. Over the last four decades, however, those maximums haven’t changed. Inflation of the dollar and stagnation of premiums have caused the costs of services to grossly outpace what insurance will cover. A $2,000 maximum 40 years ago was the equivalent of $8,000 today, but insurance still keeps maximums at $1,000–$2,000. Add to that the introduction of managed care. Essentially, if we want to play, managed care requires us to pay! We must sign an agreement that limits the fees we can charge, pulling money out of our pockets. Roughly 3/4 of all dental insurance is managed care. Patients assume “insurance” should cover their needs. Dental insurance shouldn’t be called insurance at all; it should be called a supplement . Health insurance | 1-888-880-GEMS (4367) 1 Continued on page 2...

When Elizabeth and I started “Planet Gems” many years ago, we knew we wanted to foster a culture in which our members became an extension of our family. Sure, we work hard to provide the Gems that empower your practice to achieve previously unimaginable levels, but it’s the relationships we build and the community we cultivate that make what we do so special. Our retreats demonstrate firsthand how the unbreakable bonds we forge change the future of our practices, our patients, and our lives. You are our family, and the Gems family is the bonding force that allows us to collectively accomplish our mission. Elizabeth and I, along with our Gems team and you, our Gems family, are dedicated to improving the health and longevity of 3 million people, one smile at a time.

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