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The power is beginning to shift from the dentist to the patient.
Putting power in the hands of the consumer is occurring in every industry. This trend is now manifesting itself in dentistry in many ways. It is also generating new opportunities for entrepreneurs as demonstrated by the video below.
By putting the power in the consumers’ hands, channeling the consumers’ intention and standing for the consumers’ outcomes, the power is shifting from the provider (dentist) to the consumer (patient).
How will organized dentistry react to this shift in power? What impact will it have on dental practices small and large? How will insurance companies react to a consumer-driven dentistry?
Just like Uber impacted transportation or Amazon disrupted retail shopping, how will preventive-centric dentistry- patients being able to self-assess their dental condition-affect the dental practice? There are companies positioning themselves to disintermediate the dominant power brokers, dentists and insurance companies and champion patients, which will directly and powerfully impact the future of dentistry.
As I have said repeatedly over the last few years, dentistry is no longer undergoing evolutionary change, which is simply an extension of the past. Evolutionary change is gradual and incremental and embellishes what already is. The system stays basically the same (i.e. a rotary phone evolving into a push button phone).
Dentistry is undergoing revolutionary change-change that is rapid, occurring all at once and fundamentally altering the very nature of the system. Consumer-driven dentistry will cause a revolutionary change in dentistry.