By Danny Chan
Two practices — one in Geelong and the other in Perth — have recently mapped out expansion plans set to materialize by end of this year. Both are mid-sized surgeries that have cultivated a strong patient base, posted consistently healthy returns, and share an optimistic view of the opportunities that lay ahead. Come December, both the practices will be taking delivery of multiple units of Morita equipment.
Matthew and Michelle Courtnay, Renae Alford and John Collins are practice owners who have turned to the Japanese equipment maker with a view to take their respective practices to another level. As they all share a burning passion to pursue dental excellence utilizing latter-day technology, their encounter with, and thereafter choice of, Morita equipment, is not as fortuitous as it seems.
In part one of this two-part article, we look at the practices’ scope of expansion and their encounter with Morita equipment. In part two, the practice owners share more practical motivations for their choice of equipment, and how technology plays a pivotal role in their grand visions.
A tale of two practices
Matthew and Michelle run Newtown Dental, a brisk family clinic named after the Geelong suburb it is currently located in. The practice will soon relocate to Belmont and be renamed Roslyn 38, borrowing the name of the road that will be siting the newly refurbished dental building.
Roslyn 38 resides on two separate land titles, totaling 980-sqm. The practice will house six fully equipped surgeries and be staffed by four dentists, six nurses, two receptionists and practice manager. Employment of two more dentists and a hygienist are on the cards. The family practice offers all aspects of general practice, prosthodontics, children’s restorative and preventative services. Of the budgeted costs, fitout is apportioned $250,000 and equipment, $500,000. Fitout and equipment installation is due early December.
Renae and John have been partners in their dental practice for 15 years. The practice, simply named Renae Alford and John Collins Dentists, is due for a major face-lift as well. The building is a federation, heritage listed ex-maternity hospital with 3.6m high ceilings, leadlight windows and ornate original fireplaces.
The building, with a floor space of 300 sqm will house five surgeries. The practice employs three dentists, two hygienists, four nurses, two receptionists and a practice coordinator. The new practice is due to be opened on 3rd December 2012 with the equipment being installed the week before on the 26th November.
Different reasons, similar decisions
Following extensive product research, the Courtnays had initially decided that their choice of dental units would be decided between two German makes. While visiting the Henry Schein showroom, they discovered a Morita chair on display and were wowed by its slick design and compact built. Comparing the svelte Morita chair to the chunky German units, which they confided had resembled “panzer tanks with ridiculously obtrusive footprints”, the couple swiftly changed course and made contact with a local Morita supplier.
Matthew also spoke to existing Morita customers, who said, if given a chance, they would buy the same products again.
Matthew figures: “If you find something you like and it’s good enough to buy again, it must have served you well.
“The Morita chairs not only came highly recommended and had everything Michelle wanted, they were extremely comfortable. Aesthetically, there is nothing on the market that even comes close.”
The Courtnays ended up purchasing a dozen units of Morita equipment: Four Soaric chairs; two Emcia chairs; and six Veraview X-ray units.
For Renae and John, the decision to go with Morita products was decidedly more straightforward. From Morita, they bought three Soaric units, all equipped with motorized endodontic capability and appropriate drills; two Actus units for hygienists; a Veraviewepocs 2D OPG (upgradeable to 3D); and five X-ray units.
Prior experience with Morita products was enough to seal the deal, John says:
“Over the years, I have used all major dental units. The highest priority has to be reliability. For the past three years, two of our surgeries have been equipped with Morita Emcia dental chairs. They have required no service and have easily been the most functional chairs I have worked on. The three new Morita Soaric dental chairs we are purchasing are a step up to the most stunning unit I have ever seen.”
Commending Morita’s diagnostic offering, John adds:
“The Morita OPG we are installing, I believe to be the most cost effective and best performing OPG on the market. I am excited about this particularly because 38 years ago, I purchased a Morita OPG for my first practice in Sydney. It was cutting edge then as this one is now.
“In fact if the government restrictions placed only on WA dentists were lifted, I would upgrade to 3D.”
(To be continued...)