If you want to find a good dentist in Sydney, don’t just make your decision based on price
Post by Dr Jeff Brown
I think two of the big challenges facing dentistry is firstly that it is perceived by many as too expensive, and secondly that there is an oversupply of graduates. Our professional association, the Australian Dental Association, has done a lot of research into this topic, and has actively lobbied the government about it, because it’s a serious issue.
If people don’t appreciate quality and just seek out a dentist based on price, it’s going to impact the profession in a bad way. I think there are many people who appreciate the benefit of having health care professionals look after their health, but they’re not always a vocal majority. There will always be people who complain loudly about the cost of healthcare, but a preventative check up every six months will always be cheaper than a dental emergency, or oral surgery.
The challenge facing all of us is the reality that over recent years, there are four times more dentists entering the workforce each year than there were ten years ago, and there are not enough patients for them. Employment in the profession is dropping. The Australian Dental Association came out at the start of 2013 and asked for a cap on the number of students being admitted to courses.
At Greenwood Dental, the way we try to counter that perception among some people that dentistry is too expensive is by education. I’ve had people who have come back from a cheaper dentist, and they’ll say there’s no way they can give me the quality of work we do.
So patient education and above-normal service are both really important. Having said that, I also think the profession in general is good at the level of service we offer, especially in comparison to some other medical specialities. The quality of care is so high in dentistry. And if you want to be up there, you have to show you’re caring.