VLC Reflections: Sapna Nath
VLC Reflections: Sapna Nath

VLC Reflections: Sapna Nath

A Virtual VLC

Sapna Nath, D1

I was drawn to HSDM for the unique way the curriculum integrates dental and medical disciplines in education, research, and patient care. This training will be instrumental in helping me foster inter-professional collaboration and practice to connect different silos in healthcare. However, there are more limited opportunities to explore non-traditional paths in dentistry at HSDM. As someone who hopes to pursue the non-clinical side of dentistry, VLC provided to gain new exposure to the multidisciplinary reaches of business in dentistry and medicine. Being conversant in business and healthcare is critical to fostering greater creativity, entrepreneurialism, and principled decision-making are central lessons in many of the many of the talks I participated in at VLC.  Listening to the amazing speakers at VLC, I am eager to now contribute both the insight and skills I have gained to think innovatively about methods to integrate business knowledge with our training. 

Digestible Take-aways from VLC

  • The amount of money people spend on dental care in the US has been decreases 
  • ~10% of all dentists are affiliated with DSOs 
  • Many offices have not kept out with current technologies – there has been a technology boom of digital workflow in the past 20 years 
  • Product + service: distinguish yourself based on service – patients don’t know what you are doing in their mouths 
  • Dentistry is a patient centric business model – think about what kind of patient you want to treat (these are your target markets)
  • Need to think ahead in your business plans and you can’t be afraid to try new things 
  • Know what you want to get out of the room before you enter it 
  • One of the most powerful tools in networking is remembering names – use rhymes and associations to help you remember 
  • Even as you leave, maintain your eye contact and steer conversation topics toward the future 
  • Focus on what makes you unique and find your passion 
  • Four steps to engagement: set expectations, create safe non-judgmental environments for growth, build new behaviors and define steps
  • Communication, humility, vision, teamwork, subject matter experts, shared authority, diversity in thought, safety, feedback, and recognition are key elements of a high-performing team   
  • 30% of tele-dentistry patients have not been to the dentist in the past 10 years 
  • Teledentistry: can be asynchronous and synchronous 
  • You can use teledentistry to figure out which patient is right for you and is your target patient