Barry Vanvokinburg 0:00
And the biggest thing right now is, is what are these products look like after the sale? What's the maintenance protocols going to be? What are the annual cost of ownership? What's that look like? Hello,
Kaitlyn Cole 0:16
and welcome to the dental education podcast with class solutions. This podcast is a community of dental professionals who share their knowledge and experience in order to provide value to you and your dental practice.
Phil Cole 0:27
Everyone want to welcome you to this episode, we're going to be talking with Barry from Henry Schein, Barry is an equipment specialists. I've known him for quite a while and he's what I consider one of the best. And so we want to just give you a quick brief rundown on some things that you should be focusing for your equipment while you're out of the office and with the new stuff coming forward once we get off of the COVID. So welcome, Barry to the dental education podcast with class solutions. Good morning. Why don't you give me give me a quick, brief rundown of yourself so that everybody knows a little bit about you.
Barry Vanvokinburg 1:11
Yeah, Ben in the industry for about eight years now. And I'm always a fan of dental dentistry in general and been rocked like so many others with this whole situation. And I guess excited to kind of share what we've been working on and talking about and on daily discussions with Henry Schein as well as throughout the industry.
Phil Cole 1:37
Awesome. So like I said, Barry, I have always respect him big time, because he has been one of those guys that has just always spoke the truth and, and made sure that the customers were getting what they should have, and not looking for getting something, some type of a sale. So hence, I wanted to make sure that we brought Barry on to discuss a few things. So I got a question for you, Barry. And that's basically in a nutshell, what should we be focusing on? In our offices right now set while we're quarantined?
Barry Vanvokinburg 2:12
Oh, where do I begin? Outside of all the webinars and free CDs and everything else that are available right now I think the main focus is just staying in front of in front of your team. staying staying positive. Despite every every situation that has been thrown our way, I think we need to really, really focus on being the leader that most doctors have had been put in place to be probably the number one thing I can I can say I don't feel you've touched on that. Some of the other documents that you've sent out and so forth, it's just staying in front of the team, keeping them in a positive kind of mindset, and hoping that we're gonna get through this. But above and beyond that, staying focused, staying relevant on let's, I would say you focus on also going back to the basics and evaluating kind of what what your office looks like, pre COVID, and what your office is going to like post COVID I walk, I walk into many offices, I call on the entire state of Michigan. And so I have the opportunity to go into 1000s of offices. And I would say, nine out of 10 offices I walk into, I can easily spot something that probably wasn't compliant. That's not to say that they're not making efforts to do so. I'm not judging anyone. But there's there's a lot of a lot of offices that are very easily like, pre COVID That I can see, this is an issue or this is an issue. A lot of it has to do with sterilization quite a few times. It's an area that I think most people just hope that it's getting done right and in in we're trying to abide by what we think might be right. But I think taking the time going back to the basics and identifying was I up to up to par prior to this. And you know, and the pre requisites that are that were put in play by OSHA CDC ADEA. Or was I fallen short on those compliances. And then now what are we looking at, to to go forward? We don't know that yet. But I would recommend just going back to the basics, evaluating what your practice looks like, going through it. Third, I think making sure that you're properly shutting down all your equipment, if you haven't done so, maybe you've been going back in you've been maybe to patients and whatnot. Make sure that you're either a keeping those things running or you're shutting down properly according to the manufacturer's guide Like, each manufacturer is different. So I couldn't tell you or just go about it and give you a blanket checklist. Because each and every every office has some different equipment in it in the recommendations set forth by that manufacturer for each piece of equipment, slightly different from one to another. So be sure to check with your, your rep. And have them get you any and all documentation from the manufacturers and go about it accordingly.
Phil Cole 5:26
Yeah, no, I totally agree with the two things. And like I said, with us being nationwide, we walk into offices, and no matter what state you walk into, it's very similar. It's not like, you know, Michigan is different than any other one. But I would say that one of the things that we've been putting out, like you said, is a bunch of lists of items that they should be doing. But one of the things that we do with our OSHA training, is we have a in person audit, when we can actually go out to offices, but we also have a four page checklist audit that we can do that they can walk through. And when we send that out, I will tell you, it's amazing how many times we get calls going, Are you sure that we need to have all this checked off, because they're not even 50%. So I think it's important for everybody understand that, you know, you know, we preach at class, not trying to be a commercial here, but we preach at class systems and programs. And, you know, systems can break down very quickly when you start getting busy. And when you start, you know, getting the daily function, we're going to be busy when this comes back, because people are going to want to get in. And so the question is, is, are we going to have the systems in place and be ready to follow them, so that we turn around and don't fall into the trap of immediately neglecting them? Because it's not going to be a good thing right now.
Barry Vanvokinburg 6:54
Phil Cole 6:56
So the other thing is, you mentioned the equipment, and so forth. You know, I agree 100% with you. And I know that there's so many people, we get calls all the time, and like I said, been in your side of the business for over 15 years. Same thing as is I get a lot of calls. And there's a lot of guys out there to think and just shut down. Don't worry about it. And I'll come back and flick on later. And of course in the state of Michigan, you know, everybody's the doctors are jumping on their fishing boats and saying I'm not going to worry about it anymore. Yeah. The problem is with that is, you know, I immediately say you can't do that, because of just the lines, the bio from the biofilm that's going to build in those lines. So give me just your interpretation or what your thoughts are on that, because they're going to have to take care of those lines before people come back. For sure, absolutely.
Barry Vanvokinburg 7:58
So I mean, like I said, if you're going in, make sure you're running line cleaner through it, the standard protocols, what, whatever line cleaner you have been, you know, previously using. And then above and beyond when, when you come back, just prior to opening the doors to a steady stream of patients, we're going to want to be providing some type of a shock treatment and going through each and every operatory. And, and doing proper tests as well to ensure that your Cfu count is where it needs to be.
Phil Cole 8:37
You know, and one of the things is I know that's been become a very popular thing in the dental world for lying cleaners is a scary straw. You know, I've done a little research on that. And that is one of those things too is even though those are sitting in the water bottles now and they're they're made to last for a year. Sitting there, they still are going to have to come back and do a shock treatment.
Barry Vanvokinburg 9:01
Yeah, absolutely. And in the stairs, still, I can't remember the exact name of the of the the shock state yourself. I think it is. That's and that's one base there. So that's as simple as mixing that up and dumping it in there. You can still maintain that straw. It's just going to give it a shock at that point.
Phil Cole 9:23
And then, you know, when it comes to your suction and back, the most importantly is that where you were talking about was just look at the manufacturers find out what it is that you need to do with that to make sure that you
Barry Vanvokinburg 9:36
just yeah, that that in sterilizers I mean, if the sterilizer just sitting there not being run. There's a lot of things that can be could be occurring. So we want to make sure that we're occasionally flip through with on running the cycle. And absolutely Aaron Beck you know, I get more sales off from compressors and vacuums seems to be after school. And break and right immediately after like Christmas break, where people maybe took up some time, let them sit idle for two, three weeks. Some of that has to probably do with the weather, you know, cooler temps and so forth. Sometimes, maybe maybe not. But a lot of it has to probably do with just not running. And maybe they didn't properly flush it out before they left, maybe some stuff was just remaining, nonetheless, tends to seize up. And when it ceases, and sits in the debris, depending on the the vacuum, where depending on the compressor really can cause major problems. So as much as I would love some sales, I don't want those costs, I'd rather have you guys up and running.
Phil Cole 10:47
Yeah, and the big thing is to is, you know, you know, I know you and myself have breached this, you know, for years, because it isn't just the COVID that's causing us to have to do this warning. And this, this has to relate to when you go take your vacation, or you shut down for 10 days for Christmas and stuff. Like you said, that's when you get the calls, right? Because people sit there and they leave for the 10 days, they don't think about it, but they do have to go in and continue to show movement and a lot of these areas. So so the big question is for you is because you know, I know you're getting it, and you can see it everywhere on the internet, we're throwing out podcasts. We've been throwing out, you know, literature and everything left and right, people are asking, What am I going to need to buy? And I know, one of the big things is, is I'm getting a ton of questions. And with our webinar this afternoon with you know, cover your assets. We've already got a question in the doctors, what do I need to buy? For this? You know, extra oral evacuation? Because of all the aerosol? What are they going to make us buy? Or what are some suggestions for us to do? You have what do you? What do you have?
Barry Vanvokinburg 12:09
Now? That's a great question. So it's been super hot topic, I probably received over, I don't know, 30 plus calls just yesterday alone regarding that from from different doctors. I wish I had a magic crystal ball and which I can look into and say, here's what the CDC is gonna suggest. And here's what we're going to tell you, you know, here's the magic bullet, here's, here's what we need you to buy to be compliant. Unfortunately, we do not have that yet. There are a lot of products as you can imagine hitting the market, some which have existed in other countries, in other industries, and then some that are are brand new to the market. I were taking a pretty cautious approach to it. And the biggest thing right now is is what are these products look like after the sale? What's the maintenance protocols going to be? What are the, you know, annual cost of ownership, you know, what that look like? And at the end of the day, those are all things that we need to take into consideration. We don't even know what we're going to be required to do. You know, I've had several people in, in the just bring to attention like these air evacuated or surgical suction units that kind of dangle over the person's face and provide a giant vacuum, kind of like cone over their face during the procedure. I as a patient, I'm not quite sure if that's what I would want or my face. Now maybe it would make me safer. I can probably bear with it through a procedure. But the same time, we really have to kind of question like, What does that look like? Is that going to be the new norm? If so, so be it, then it will be. But I am a little bit hesitant to push any product of some sort right now on this. I can say that. I I won't, but I think we're yet to see we're at the tip of the iceberg just waiting to see it kind of crest right now. Just wondering, okay, what is this going to look like? Well, who can tell we have those answers from the CDC? It's really hard to push. Now, are there some precautionary things that we could be considering they're doing absolutely. isn't gonna hurt you to invest in something like that? No. from a patient perspective, are they going to make me feel safer is your team's going to feel safer? Absolutely. So I'm not here to discourage you from buying that. Just saying we don't quite know what the implication is going to look like?
Phil Cole 14:53
Well, I think I think that's going to depend on to is just basically, once again, this is where we pray. You know, you really got to start learning to understand your patient base, right? There's so many doctors out there that just turn around and they see their patients, right. They come in, they they visit, they do their work, and they're out the door. But more than ever, you're going to need to know, you know, what kind of patient what is my patient base going to feel about this? Because I agree with you, I'm the kind of guy that you're going to stick that thing six inches from my mouth, I'm not going to like it. It's, it's no different than back in the day when digital sensors came out, right? How many people turned around and hated those things. Now granted, digital sensors became the norm. Everybody now does it. You don't hear the complaints like we used to hear when they first came out. And maybe we won't hear the complaints if that becomes something that is, you know, mandatory. But I do think that it's one of those things where baby steps. So what are your so I know that we are hearing humongously on our OSHA site, and everything that there is going to be most likely, once again, this is all, you know, speculation, but most likely there's going to be in the hygiene. Mandatory ah, you know, high volume, suction. So what are your thoughts on just starting off with like a Mr. Twister? I think that's the name right. Mr.
Barry Vanvokinburg 16:25
Thirsty, Mr. Thirsty or isolate? Or any of the kind of dry shield applications? Yeah, that's, in fact, I mean, that would be my first recommendation, just off the bat. Easy. You know, implication. I mean, relatively inexpensive. And, quite frankly, it's, it's closer than anything else can ever get. The guys that use them are very, typically very happy with the result that they're getting, or the kind of experience that they're, they're getting in their patients getting windows. So I can't see anything better to, to invest in just right off the bat. I feel like that's, that's a very simple, easy thing to implement. Now, obviously, I'm not a doctor, I don't know, shortcomings of it just seems to be that would probably be the the most simple, easiest, cost effective investment, just to before you put some huge contraption in the office.
Phil Cole 17:39
So the other question is, of course I get all time is, is basically when it comes down to the handpiece is, of course, right there, their high speed handpieces, we've always dealt with certain doctors, there's handpieces out there that eliminate the suck back and have built in systems for that. I know that, you know, Caveau is one of the best when it comes to that. So that feature alone is going to be a huge factor. When it
Barry Vanvokinburg 18:09
gets in and a majority of the time, it's I mean, the electrics are gonna be the ones that don't have the suck back action. And so that's, that's a big plus. But we don't have any dark scientific documentation to say that this handpiece versus handpiece or anything of such nature is going to reduce aerosol debris. Right so that we can't really say or go down that road. I would say one thing that we need to be concerned with or conscious of when dealing with handpieces is is infection control aspect of it. slow speed motors need to be I mean, it's been a recommendation for the longest time, I would say now more than ever, probably needed to get more motors or considering especially in the hygiene, maybe switch into a cordless type of device where it's easily managed from an infection control standpoint.
Phil Cole 19:15
No, I agree. 100%. And then so the other thing is, and he brought it up to me when we were talking before we got started here. And I I found it very interesting. So I want to tell a little bit what are your What are your thoughts on the lasers?
Barry Vanvokinburg 19:32
Yeah, so interestingly enough, I mean, it's a it's a rather large investment from a from a cost standpoint and we were just strictly looking at it on $1 Bottom line, investment type thing. However, lasers are are coming to the forefront in my opinion. Hard and Soft tissue lasers. They And, you know, there's been some, some good and bad in the past. However, this delay of lasers and absolutely amazing, and I'm not trying to pitch or or, or throw out some type of advertisement here for them but it really it's impressive. Not only is it faster for Karis preparation and you know your class one, class two class three. But there's some there's some aspects to it that are very interesting to you know you uses a whole lot less air pressure than that of a high speed handpiece there's no turbine or gear mechanism. So you know, any. And although it still uses weight or water to a certain degree, water and air in a coolant standpoint, there you are, you're essentially vaporizing everything. And you're doing that at 1000 degrees. So everything you ablate is being vaporized. So there's some white papers that have been released by them. I've done a webinar coming up with them to discuss just this, and kind of go over some of that. So it could be a game changer. So not only is it gonna save you a lot of time, but it might be kind of one of those one of those pieces of equipment that might be seriously looked at by a lot of people, I think,
Phil Cole 21:41
well, then if that's the case, how about you do me a favor, and when you're done with that webinar, and you get some more of that white paper, we come back on, and we explain to to the audience here, a little bit more about that, and so that they can have some good information. And we can post that stuff to our website, too. All right, so last question. And then I'll let you go is, you know, the big question, I guess, they're all big questions. But once again, another question as as, you know, how am I gonna afford all this? What are you dealing with the banks and so forth? What are you seeing out there for these doctors so that they can, you know, move to purchasing some of these things that they want?
Barry Vanvokinburg 22:25
Yep. So some of the bigger questions are, can you afford not to do so? So the banks themselves? I, that's a i, we could spend all day with that
Phil Cole 22:42
I correct on this?
Barry Vanvokinburg 22:45
It's a pretty open ended question right now, I, we've been seeing some people get some money, especially from smaller banks. I've spoke to numerous doctors that are are of the mindset of man, money's cheap, right? Now I can I can get it, the rates are relatively low, probably the lowest that we've seen in, you know, five years, if not longer, and probably the lowest, they will be going forward for quite some time, because I think a lot of people are gonna have to recoup this money when it's all said and done. Nonetheless, I think there's some opportunities there, there's a lot of doctors that are looking to even buy practices. Now, I don't want to say that that's across the market, because I know this has definitely affected some people in a very negative manner, in which they're gonna have a hole to dig out of as well. So I want to be kind of empathetic to both sides, they're realizing that there's gonna be some, some winners in this, and there's gonna be some losers. And unfortunately, I mean, it's never fun for anyone. But I would say, take the time to talk with your bank with your CPA, see once what is available, the money that that I've seen, from loan interest, and so forth, it's very, I mean, it would be worth taking a look at it's very enticing. But I'm not saying to rush out and buy a bunch of stuff, but also maybe start to look at and evaluate what you were doing in practice. You know, we're looking at two months of lost production here. And we don't even know when we're going to be released, or, or when we do get released to go back into our practice how that's going to look, how is that going to? Are we going to be able to see all the patients in a day that we were seeing, or are we going to be limited? I don't want to spend a bunch of fear and put that into people's minds but that that's the reality of which we might be looking at right
Phil Cole 24:44
I hear you Oh percent but I think the other big thing is too is is once again like we to go back to the beginning of the conversation. Make sure that you're taking care of the equipment you already have so that you don't have to waste your money on stuff that already was working or And you can afford then to take that money and put it into maybe the stuff that is either going to hate say it may be, you know, regulated to forced on you verse or something that you just want to do for your patients. Because nothing like being set back, you know, 10 15,000 Because all of your equipment you didn't, you know, maintain it,
Barry Vanvokinburg 25:22
maintain it or look at it. Yeah, absolutely. I couldn't agree more I feel but I mean more. So maybe look at look at how your technology stacks up right now. Because I'm not trying to trying to push technology or trying to push a product on anyone, but they're implementing just simple items in it within your practice, might make the job go smoother throughout the day, you might get more case acceptance might save you some some significant time. And in this as we come back time is going to be the major issue we're looking at. So if you quick break down the math, and I'm sure you've already done this, if you if you look at just we're missing two months, if a doctor was working four days a week, may be taken off either a Monday or taking off on a Friday. And working, you know, another four days. They just missed 32 Production days. How do I get that back? Right? And, well, if we were to roll back may 1, maybe my maps a little fuzzy? I don't know I haven't, I haven't looked at the calendar and counted exactly how many days but there's probably roughly 32 days left, if you if you picked up that Friday that you weren't working, and you rolled your patients back in. So is there an opportunity to recoup or regain all that? Yeah, I've had other doctors say, Mike, we're just going to work a couple extra hours a day, we're going to come in a little earlier, we're going to stay a little later. That's great. However, it works for people. I mean, I think the opportunities there I've had other doctors say, you know, this has been the greatest thing in in my life, I've been able to spend some time with my family. It's been a reset, caught up on some education, I've reevaluated my office, I couldn't have asked for a better time, despite the situation. You know what this was well worth it, I'm ready to go back and I'm going to implement some tech, new technology, I'm going to, you know, rip and tear through this. Great, I mean, everybody's different. But really seriously, take a look at how things in your office we're working, maybe jump on a couple of webinars, catch a couple CDs, all the dental providers offer it, I have been offering a ton of ton of classes and informational type pieces and demonstrations that other doctors have been putting on through this period. Looking at how technology can change or evolve your practicing, maybe the practice you've always
Phil Cole 27:47
wanted? Well, that's what I would encourage. Yeah, I mean, like, like, I've been preaching, you know, it's nothing against the dentist. But you know, we all know, the dentist does not get any business in the dental school. And so, I've always, I've always preached but I think it's more important than ever before is is you can't, you know, you and I run across those doctors all the time that I just like doing dentistry, right? It we're at a stage now where you can't just be a dentist, you also have to realize you are a business owner. And so you have to be a business owner. And so like you're saying, time is going to be a factor. So what's going to help with that time efficiencies? Right? So now you gotta you gotta look at all those efficiencies. And so what are those things that you can do to be more efficient to keep that time down?
Barry Vanvokinburg 28:43
You know, for more dentistry and less time, in order, not harder
Phil Cole 28:47
and not not sacrifice the dentistry, right, that's the most important thing. So the patients still gets the same quality dentistry. It's just a case in point of, we all have, we all know, even myself included with this time off, you know, it's, it's been, you know, one of those things where I've even been able to put in a little bit more efficiencies for my own business, you know, because I've had the time and so forth. So this is, like you said, time to really well, you got to have more weeks, possibly, you know, left? It's the time yeah, hopefully. Yeah, hopefully, it's this is the time that we got to really sit there and hunker down and look at everything. You know, we we preach right now big time, do an assessment on the practice, you know, because when you come back, you know, where are the, you know, areas that that could be improved very easily, and yet turn around and produce you 100 to $100,000 more in this wipes away any concerns? Right. So there's a lot of things. Yeah, it's got to be proactive about it.
Barry Vanvokinburg 29:57
Yeah. And so I'm glad you brought that up because there's there's Definitely some huge gaps. Henry Schein does a practice analysis and I know you do something very similar practice evaluation, you're just a little bit more thorough maybe. But the end of the day really dive in deep in terms of seeing where your codes might be falling, where where your gaps and hygiene might be, if you if your team has been fully taken advantage of, you know, large diagnostic X rays, you know, whether they're doing full mouth series or they're doing a pan, or cbcc, making sure that the billing and the coding is correct on all that you're you're getting every little bit for your you know, the work you put for negotiating with some of the insurance companies, I know that sometimes harder, that's easier said than done. It's much harder than we ever anticipated want. And I don't see that getting easier, but but evaluating where where some money might be leaking out the back door for the work that you're already doing. And at the end of the day, that's probably, I mean, that's probably your easiest, easiest way to gain a quick buck right now and recoup some of the loss loss income loss production, just by going back and making sure there's no holes or no huge, huge gaps in the boat where the water is just pouring in. And that's at the end of the day, let's make sure we're plugging those holes.
Phil Cole 31:27
Well, I really appreciate Barry the time that you're given us. I know that you're taking care of the state of Michigan. But just to do a little favor. I mean, would it be alright, when we post this podcast, we always give a little introduction, verbal and written introduction. Just so people can reach out to you as already if I hand out your email address. That way, if anybody's got any other questions or anything like that they can contact you. Absolutely. Awesome. Well, thanks so much, Barry. And thank everyone for joining us on this episode of dental education with class solutions. hope it was informative, and we'll see you next time. Appreciate it, Phil,
Barry Vanvokinburg 32:07
thanks. All right. Thank you