When Selling a Dental Practice
A Few Things to Consider When Leaving Your Own Practice
Leaving your dental practice? There are a number of things to do to make sure the process goes as smooth as possible. One of your top priorities should be taking care of the existing patients.
- Keep Patients Informed
- You should give existing patients reasonable notice (at least 30 days) when making this type of transition. This is to ensure they have adequate time to find an alternative healthcare provider if desired.
- Sending a letter or email out to your client database is usually the best way to keep everyone updated on the upcoming changes.
- The notice should provide a timeline for when changes will take place, explain that the patient has the choice to switch providers and how they can transfer their records if they choose to do so.
- Provide patients with contact information for both parties involved in case they need assistance.
- If you are selling your practice or moving on, be careful not to solicit the clients of the acquiring doctor or practice you’re leaving.
- Handling Patient Medical Records
- Written policies must be created regarding how medical records are handled. The policies must include how the records are stored and transferred safely.
- Records must be kept for a certain period of time and patients should be notified on how long they will be retained. In most cases, dental records must be kept for at least 10 years but it would be beneficial to the patients to keep them longer. If old records need to be destroyed, make sure to do this securely by shredding them.
- The policy should include directions for how patients can retrieve their records in a timely manner.
- If the practitioner were to pass away, instructions should be provided for the executor of what to do with the medical records and how to access them.
- On a general note, HIPAA compliance is a vital aspect of any practice and is well worth the monetary investment. Ask us for a reference!
- Change can be difficult, try to keep your emotions out of it. By cooperating, you will save time, money and make for a smoother process.
- Introduce the new dentist to existing patients before completely leaving the practice. This will demonstrate your care for them and encourage them to stay.
- Both parties will have an incentive to protect the practice’s goodwill – reputation, referral base, etc. Find the common ground and work together to achieve a mutually beneficial transition.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained herein is for personal informational purposes only and should not be relied upon for any other purposes. © 2014 NC Planning, and their dental practice attorneys, are a service of Adams Howell Sizemore & Lenfestey, PA. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly prohibited. Image courtesy of patrisyu at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.