The Week That Was: February 6-10

Happy 15th Birthday to Give Kids A Smile!

As I type this, many of our member dentists and others are in full swing at the semi-annual Give Kids A Smile clinic in St. Louis. This is the cradle of the entire GKAS movement which began from the passion of a few community oriented professionals in 2000. The first clinic was in February 2002, so it’s only right we send our Missouri-proud greetings to our friends in St. Louis. The ADA picked up on the concept and rolled it out as a national project each February as part of Children’s Dental Health Month. Since then more than 5.5 million children have received care, and some 10,000 member dentists plus another 30,000 team members have participated in a clinic. Truly amazing! While my schedule did not allow for participation this year, I have enjoyed volunteering in the past. Many of you may also be doing something similar on a smaller scale in your practice. This type of generosity makes me proud to be associated with the dental profession.

Exciting “Find a Dentist” Changes Coming

Several of us at the MDA office participated in an ADA webinar concerning a new 3-year advertising campaign to help drive potential patients to your office via the Find a Dentist (FAD) tool. They have identified a market of 19.6 million people who have the ability to access and pay for dental visits but get too busy with life. The campaign will use digital and social media to create 157,000 clicks to the FAD in 2017 alone. This starts with a new and improved platform and every member needs to upgrade their profile ASAP. The goal is to have 50,000 members on this platform by May 1. As an incentive, when you upgrade your profile you are entered to win a year lease on a brand new Mercedes ($15k value) or $10k in cash. So what are you waiting for? Get that pretty mug of yours and your other office info updated now so patients can find you! Click here to update your profile.

The Office

Invasion of the bean counters! Well, that’s a little exaggerated, but it was time for the annual audit. This is a smart business practice and helps keep the MDA on track with high standards. It is quite wide-ranging, and Denise Lehmen in our office does a spectacular job having everything ready. My only contribution was to pass through the board room and ask the auditors not to look in the closets. Bad humor persists; I apologize.

Another interesting internal discussion focuses on our communication efforts. I was attracted to work with the MDA six years ago because of the quality of the Focus magazine and the excellent job they did communicating so many issues to so many people with so many different interests across so many miles. This still holds true but it gets more complex with the onslaught of texting, Facebook, Twitter and the like. How much should we say and how often should we send are big questions. No one wants to underserve our members by not providing timely and accurate information. Plus we are all passionate about awareness for our projects as we promote student events, MOMOM, CE meetings, legislative news, EFDA and on and on. You can’t maximize all your membership offers without staying informed, but you also don’t want your inbox flooded with too much news. Thus we are reviewing the best way to do our job well without frustrating our members. More to come, but at this point I would say make sure you read the eNews sent every other Wednesday. And of course, check the website any time for the latest updates.

The Road

Katie Reichard left yesterday to speak at the Northwest Dental Society meeting in St. Joseph. She’s en route back to the office, so no report yet. Otherwise, we were grounded. I returned from my Georgia visit, dejected over the Falcons collapse, but happy to have spent time with Pops.

Next Week

International flair takes over as the MDA Travel & Learn leaves tomorrow for Mexico. Vicki and about 37 others will soak up lots of CE while struggling to find time in the sun. Stacey will be in St. Louis with the MOSDOH students at the vendor fair and a MedPro Food for Thought program. And I will be with the first and second year MOSDOH students on Friday as part of a Well Being presentation delivered by Dr. Bill Kane and Rebecca Mowen. A recent survey reported that 33% of dentists considered making work/life balance a goal for 2017, so why not start early helping students discover and use the resources we offer? Read more here. (So you don’t worry about me, note that a late return on Friday from Kirksville could delay the publication of this blog a day or so.)

Quote of the Week
In honor of Valentine’s Day next Tuesday … “Where there is love, there is life …”—Gandhi


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