Payment plans – a goodwill builder
Dental Practice Consultancy Services explains how having a payment plan can increase your practice’s goodwill value.
The reason that practices have a value for goodwill is that there is an expectation there will be ongoing income after a practice is sold.
In NHS practices the income stream is extremely predictable provided that the terms of the contract are met, however where there is no NHS contract it can be difficult when trying to assess a value to establish the active patient base.
This is especially so if patients are only treated on a fee-per-item basis as there will be many occasional attenders and transient patients and this in turn makes it difficult to establish a goodwill value as there is far less predictability of an ongoing income stream.
Whilst many practitioners would not want to move over to a full capitation model, the use of a patient registration scheme from one of the many providers available can be of great assistance to us as valuers and of course does provide an underpinning of income to the practice.
We believe it is realistic to assume that a patient that is prepared to enter into a regular payment arrangement with their dentist considers themselves to be a patient of the practice, and therefore likely to re-attend and likely to be receptive to their ongoing treatment needs and to have that satisfied by an incoming practitioner.
A well-structured registration arrangement can be made to look attractive to the majority of patients.
As with all things, setting the structure of a scheme in a manner that is appropriate for the practice and its patient base is at the heart of successful implementation and we have recently been assisting practitioners in looking to implement or develop such arrangements.