Dr. Andrew Smyth
Creating a Timeless Esthetic
How Dr. Andrew Smyth brought a modern look and cottage-like feel together in his new practice.
Dr. Andrew Smyth bought his dental practice in Fredericton, NB in 2008, after associating at three practices in Ottawa, Ontario for two years. Just 31 years old when he started planning the new build, he credits a phenomenal support team as helping make a new build possible. While he was working in the original location, his wife — Dr. Cara Moran, a dentist in the Canadian military — was able to help coordinate the new build in 2011-2012.
“I had always envisioned my new clinic to exceed the standard of care for a dental clinic while providing a modern, sterile environment where patients can feel comfortable,” he explained.
The need for a “modern, sterile” look was to be balanced with what Dr. Smyth describes as a “cottagey” feel, “comfortable, and welcoming as possible, using quality products and materials that would ultimately last and feel timeless.”
Pelton & Crane proved to be an ideal partner in helping to marry two design needs that — in less capable hands — might feel contradictory.
“The quality, comfort and looks of the Pelton & Crane products definitely played into my decision making. I had purchased two used Pelton chairs in 2008; they are still in incredible condition considering they are nearly 12 years old,” Dr. Smyth shared. “This proved to me that the chairs and furniture stand the test of time. Pelton & Crane product lines are timeless and stand the wear and tear of everyday use.”
In addition to day-to-day interactions with patients, the practice conducts patient surveys using DemandForce. Even three and half years after opening, patient feedback continues to be exemplary with respect to cleanliness and sterilizations, including comments such as, “nice looking brand new clinic.”
“I continue to be surprised by patient comments about the cleanliness and modern feel of this office, even three years after opening,” Dr. Smyth said. “Hearing those compliments on a daily basis is reassurance that I made the right decision and speaks to the quality of our Pelton & Crane units, as they have stood the test of time.”
All Hands on Deck
In addition to the wisdom and critical eye provided by his wife, a dentist in the Canadian military, Dr. Smyth sought advice from a variety of industry experts.
“After our initial floor plans were designed, we engaged the services of Dawn Mac Design in Halifax as a consultant/interior planner. In working through the design phase, we went through minor revisions,” he said. “We sought input from several sources, including our sales rep, Peter Sampson; our technician, David Pollard; and Bill Tingley, a practice appraiser. Scott Thornton from Henry Schein was also very hands on and gave us recommendations for interior designs that would meet our needs.”
Dr. Smyth’s experience with this team is the foundation for his advice to colleagues considering a new build or office redesign.
“Surround yourself with the right people,” he stressed, “and don’t rush into things. I am living proof that this can be done early on in your dental career with the right people surrounding you.”
Beyond Sticker Shock
Dr. Smyth admits that the cost estimates for rebuilding (or redesigning) a practice can, at first, be overwhelming. In his experience, however, the intimidating figures have given way to a more efficient, effective practice and more engaged team.
“Staff are happy, and we are just a more efficient group of people focusing on patient management and, at the end of the day, patients are in a win-win situation,” Dr. Smyth explained. “It is a better facility with happy staff members. One of my favorite movies is ‘Field of Dreams’ and I’ve found that the quote from the movie, ‘If you build it, they will come,’ has certainly proven true for our new clinic.”