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ARCHIVES: December 2012



Cancer. Do you know it?

Posted by Paul on 12/18/2012 11:29:00 AM

While this is not exactly a holiday theme post, I know it might have implications for many of you because cancer does not take holidays. It's a safe bet that anybody reading this knows someone close to them that†is battling†cancer or regretfully lost a tough battle with this heartless enemy. In fact, 2 out of every 3 people will have some type of cancer. Regardless of ribbon color, it's hard to live in this world at this time and not encounter cancer at some level in your life. In reviewing some old notes, I was reminded of a great†product that MDIS offers as to members. Consider this a healthy†holiday present from me to you.

The expense of travel and treatment and†life adjustment is one of the many impacts of cancer on a family regardless of how good your†health insurance is. This policy†helps lessen the blow. You can purchase it for yourself, your spouse,†or even your extended family.
You pay $8.50/month for $10k Lump sum payout upon first diagnosis of an†internal cancer or malignant melanoma. You can get up to $50k in coverage. Itís not paid to a doctor but to you directly. Itís not taxable; thereís no 1099 to file and there are no limitations on how you spend the money. The policy pays regardless of other existing coverages. You can receive your total cash benefit whether or not you are hospitalized or receive treatment.†Itís a secure company with good claim history. You can payroll deduct it. Itís portable, canít be canceled, and the premium has never been raised. We get the business rate but you're not eligible if youíve had a cancer diagnosis before. Call MDIS for full details.

This might make the perfect stocking stuffer and give you some peace of mind in cancer's uncertain and cruel world. Thanks for listening!

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The History of Dentistry

Posted by Paul on 12/14/2012 10:06:00 AM

What a treat it was last night when I heard one of MDA's own, Dr. Kurt Studt, deliver a lecture on the History of Dentistry. Dr. Studt was speaking as part of the Perspectives on Science & History Lecture Series sponsored by the†Academy of Science Ė St. Louis and the Missouri History Museum. The series looks at science throughout history, its relevance to life today, and implications for the future. Rose Jansen, director of public science programs at the Acedemy of Science -St. Louis, asked for†a St. Louis area dentist to speak in tandem with the current exhibition, Discover the Real George Washington. The first president was famously known for his dentures and teeth issues.†Dr. Studt did a fabulous job rising to the occasion.
His far ranging presentation was informative, very visual, and at times light hearted. An audience of just over 50 people soaked up the eccentricites of George Washington's interest in dentistry, learned about the birth and growth of dentistry in America, and cringed at some of the treatments across other cultures and through the ages. After about an hour of fascinating information, Dr. Studt answered questions from the engaged audience. It was a good night for the profession!
Two of my favorite stories had to do with colorful characters. There was the first dentist ever, Hesi-Re, an Egyptian from 3000 BC who was called "Chief of the Toothers and Physicians." I think that makes a great business card! Then there was a not so good example in "Painless" Parker, a self trained, charlatan who became a millionaire in the early 1900's with his marketing expertise to extract teeth without pain. In the photo above, the sign over his massive block long practice humbly proclaims, "I am postiviely IT in painless dentistry."
It was a good night and I salute Dr. Studt for his thorough research and excellent representation of the profession at this unique opportunity.

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Staying on Message

Posted by Paul on 12/7/2012 12:27:00 PM

I think one of the best positive stories we have to tell as an association is MOMOM. It has so many uplifting angles from the large number of grateful people who get much needed and free dental care to the wide-ranging involvement and generosity of caring people who make the event possible to the unforgettable satisfaction of working long hours together to serve your fellow man. So when I went to a media training today†as part of MOMOM 2 preparation, I was surprised to learn how many more stories we have to tell and why it's important to stay on message.
The training, conducted by our public relations consultant Fleishman-Hillard, helped the participants understand key messages for our profession and how to communicate those within the context of MOMOM. It was eye-opening to think about all the different audiences we speak to (patients, general public, business community, legislators, dental partners, etc.) I saw the value in knowing and staying on message - plus the pitfalls of getting off track. It all seemed easy enough until it was time to open our mouth. On camera. With a tough reporter. And a team of critics.
Actually, the practice was the best part. Amy Bollinger and Brandy Barker at FH did a great job teaching us and then testing us. They played the reporter part well reminding us that we don't control anything but the words that come out of our mouth. And that can be scary without practice and under pressure. The group was helpful to encourage and critique each other and we all did much better our second time around. Thankfully, we have more months to practice before MOMOM press coverage picks up. This is a great reminder for all of us to think about our core messages as it applies to both your own practice setting where we live†and to our greater professional setting that influences all of us.
The pictures above show Brandy Barker ( FH rep with back to camera), Patrick Baker (MDA legislative director), Dr. Nathan Seyer (MOMOM Facilities lead), Cheryl Mothes (MOMOM Hospitality chair), †Dr. Jan Ruopp (MOMOM chair) and †Amy Bollinger (FH rep). We were watching videos of how not to do a press interview. In the second shot, you see Dr. Ruopp in her mock interview.

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