On Draining Swamps

For three years, the American Dental Association has assured dues-paying members that “EHRs provide long-term savings and convenience.” No byline, ADA News, December 6, 2013. Since then, the costs of EHRs over paper have only increased.


When Melissa Flygare, Sales Account Executive Team Lead, Henry Schein Practice Solutions – maker of Dentrix – was asked which is cheaper, she responded, “To answer your question – is software cheaper than paper? No – paper is rather cheap.” (See: Dental EHRs and the pop of a balloon… Wait for it. Wait for it…” Linkedin Pulse, January 23, 2016).


The anonymous ADA article (ad) promotes “The Dental Record, the only ADA Business Resources-endorsed EHR provider.” Even though there is no disclaimer, The Dental Record, like Care-Credit and PBHS – a dental website and marketing firm which is mentioned in the same ad – is a source of non-dues revenue for the Chicago-based not-for-profit corporation. The sales arrangement is similar to AARP’s non-dues revenue acquired from dues-paying members: A premeditated conflict of interest in situ.

Both the ADA and the AARP fund Washington lobbyists, whose influence is based on numbers of dues-paying members. For these two not-for-profits, political influence depends on affordable dues. I wonder if AARP’s dues have been as stable as the ADA’s over the last decade.

Perhaps other, smaller, hidden swamps need to be drained as well.

D. Kellus Pruitt DDS