Dental Business 101: A Guide to Protecting Your Dental Practice

Apr 21, 2020 | Business Insurance

As of 2020, the market size of the United States Dentists industry is $139.8 billion. In recent years, the industry has experienced faster growth than the economy in general, thanks to low revenue volatility, among other positive factors. 

While this is undoubtedly great news for you if you run a dental practice, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t challenges that you’ll need to contend with to thrive in the industry. 

Maintaining the safety of your business and employees, for instance, is no easy feat. But it’s a critical part of dental practice management without which your practice will struggle to survive.

So what does protecting your dental business entail? This comprehensive guide gives you all the information you need to keep yourself safe from potential risks. 

Read on to learn more.

Dental Practice Management Tips to Keep You Secure

As your business continues to evolve, you’ll need to keep making necessary changes to ensure you have ample protection. Here are several tips to help you out.

1. Get Additional Insurance Coverage 

There are a lot of possible liabilities that come with running a dental practice. When your business started, chances are you purchased the bare minimum coverage. Now’s the time to evaluate whether you need more coverage to safeguard you from unexpected risks. 

Most likely, you’re going to need:

Professional Liability Insurance

Regardless of the dental procedures, you specialize in, you need to be prepared for malpractice claims. You’ve probably gone out of your way to ensure that your employees know how to prevent malpractice claims. But any kind of dental work carries potential risks.

Tooth extractions, implants, root canal therapy, and crowns are among the dental procedures that most frequently result in malpractice claims. With professional liability insurance, you protect your practice from any legal obligations that are associated with claims of neglectful or wrongful practices. Such claims target licensed dentists, staff, partnerships, and dental corporations.

Commercial Property Insurance

When was the last time you reviewed your commercial property business owner’s coverage? If your business has moved or expanded within the last year, now’s the time to do that review. 

A commercial property insurance policy protects the physical business building and the contents therein. The insurance also protects all the areas associated with the operations of your practice, besides having provisions for general liability coverage.

Even if you haven’t moved or opened a new branch, you may have bought new equipment that would also require increasing your policy limit. 

The great thing about a commercial property insurance policy is that it usually automatically increases coverage every year to protect you against inflation. Of course, this is one of the reasons you need to conduct a periodic review to find out if you may be over-insured.

Workers’ Compensation 

Many businesses forget about their workers’ compensation through the years, until it’s too late. With the growth of your dental practice, chances are you’ve hired new employees in the recent past. That’s why you need to reexamine your worker’s compensation to ensure that it’s sufficient. 

Employment Practices Liability

While you want to avoid high employee turnover at all costs, sometimes it happens. If any of your employees have been leaving work, it’s time to take a second look at your employment practices liability coverage. 

You want to make sure that should a claim be made for wrongful termination, discrimination, unfair treatment, or harassment, your business stays safe from defense costs, civil damages, and the settlement.

Cybersecurity Coverage

Cybercrime is a genuine threat in today’s business world. That’s why you always need to be proactive when it comes to protecting your business. Look for suitable cyber liability insurance for dentists to respond better to any cyber incidents such as:

  • Breach of sensitive personal information 
  • Unauthorized intrusion into your computer systems 
  • Damage to data from computer attacks 
  • Cyber-related litigation

2. Protecting Your Practice from Workplace Fraud

The thought that your practice could be the victim of workplace fraud can be disturbing. The last thing you want to consider is that your trusty employees could steal your money or your valuable assets. 

Unfortunately, workplace fraud is more common than you think, and it costs US businesses approximately $652 billion annually.

So how can you protect your dental practice from fraud? Well, you need to make a firm commitment at the top. Implement a culture of preventing fraud from the very beginning. 

Come up with practical policies that help you eliminate any fraudulent behavior in your practice. Some of the ways you can do so include:

Reevaluate Your Hiring Practices

Always ensure you know your candidates well by having thorough background checks. Think twice before employing individuals with a history of workplace fraud. Always know why you are hiring someone, and make sure they know their job descriptions well. 

Hold All Employees Accountable

Every member of your staff needs to be held accountable for their actions. It doesn’t matter how senior they are or how long they’ve been in your organization. If they’re found to have committed fraud, take swift action.

Encourage Prompt Communication of Potential Threats 

Dental practices that are serious about stopping workplace fraud usually encourage employees to report anything suspicious they see. Consider having a whistleblower hotline. 

Also, have routine assessments to determine the risk of fraud in your organization.

Revaluate Accounting Practices to Prevent Fraud

Many cases of workplace fraud are related to dubious accounting practices. To prevent such fraud, you send bank statements to doctors for transaction verification before they reach the office manager. This way, it’s possible to spot transactions that may not be related to your practice.

Also, ensure that your accounts are regularly audited by both internal and external auditors. 

You Can Keep Your Dental Practice Safe from Threats

Running a successful dental practice is not an easy endeavor, but it’s possible. Provided you’re implementing smart dental practice management practices, you should be able to keep the practice operating smoothly. Always find ways to keep your business more secure from unexpected threats, and success will come naturally. 

Would you like customized insurance solutions for your dental practice? Contact us today to check out our services.

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