The Alberta Dental Association and College has a thorough range of guidelines in place regarding how dental practices promote themselves. Let’s take a closer look at a few aspects of the issue and why it’s important to stay smart about your marketing.
Because the Association has banned many common marketing methods — from suggesting your dental clinic is superior to even promoting your credentials — a growing number of dentists are lobbying to raise awareness of what they believe to be excessive oversight. As well as lobbying, dentists like Calgary’s Dr. Larry Stanleigh and Dr. Michael Zuck have filed legal action against the ADA&C as of earlier this year, drawing substantial media attention to the issue. Dr. Zuck has also been targeted for legal action himself, as the ADA&C has filed a defamation suit in retaliation to video and cartoon satires of the regulatory measures.
Knowing the context and the importance of this issue is one thing, but how does the ADA&C actually punish noncompliance? Depending on your site, your marketing, and the extent of the violations, consequences can vary. Generally speaking, they have ranged from stern emails to suspensions of licenses to hundreds of thousands of dollars in penalty fees. From the perspective of many dentists, the consequences far outweigh the severity of the offenses. Among many other reasons, this view is held by so many dentists because being unable to promote one’s practice can mean a far lower number of new patients than if marketing practices were less severely regulated.
Toeing the Line
No matter what side of the issue you stand on or how you interpret the politics, the fact is that marketing your dental practice in Alberta can be tricky business these days. While the regulations may be unfairly restrictive and punitive, it’s certainly possible to build a legitimate and impressive presence for your dental practice online and in your community. More than ever, it’s highly important to know that you can trust in a marketing team that will navigate the ADA&C Code of Ethics with precision and care. You’ll need to work with the right experts to develop a marketing plan that will keep your clinic visible without landing you an angry email or worse!
At Dental Marketing Solutions, we dedicate our resources to keeping your practice in great shape, from SEO to ADA&C compliance and more. Give us a call at (403) 444-0639 today!