Practice design checklist

shutterstock_201256211Stuart Clark outlines what to bear in mind when designing a dental practice.

Designing a dental practice can be a difficult task, with many important considerations to take into account. With this in mind, let’s look at a few essential principles that will help you keep your project on track.

1. Set objectives and work towards them

No matter the scale of the project, whether it’s a complete start up or a single-surgery refit, it’s important to know exactly what you want to get out of it.

Perhaps you need to expand, or just want to update your existing space – whatever your reasons for undertaking a project like this, it’s crucial that you set out your objectives as early as possible and work hard to meet them. This will give your whole project focus and drive, and will allow you to execute your plan more effectively.

2. Be aware of function

A dental practice has many different functions and your designs must be sensitive to each and every one. For example, your practice is a place of clinical care, where patients are treated – but it is also a place of business, where your employees must be able to work effectively to achieve certain goals.

By understanding that each part of your practice must function together and separately, you will be able to create a space in which high-quality work can be carried out by all members of the team.

3. Use your space wisely

Any dental practice design will be limited by the amount of space you have to work with. Many practices in the UK have not been custom-built, so it is important to ensure that you are utilising every inch of the premises to its absolute potential. Your waiting room, for example, needs to be big enough so your patients do not feel claustrophobic or cramped, but not so big that it impacts how you get them from place to place in a time-efficient manner. You also need to ensure that your team can move about easily, without getting in each other’s way all of the time, but not waste space that could be put to better use.

4. Invest in quality technology

Investing in high-quality technology is a must for any modern dental practice. Not only will doing so keep your practice up-to-date and competitive, it will likely save you money in the long-term, enhance your workflow and patient care, and add to the esteem of your practice. Patients like to see new technology – and knowing that their dentist is investing in the best.

Digital technology is emerging as an integral part of modern dentistry, so a practice development is the ideal time for you to start introducing digital technology into your practice if you haven’t done so already. Indeed, those who are ready to embrace new technology are demonstrably more successful than those who are not.

Managing all of these things can be daunting, especially if you do not have any prior experience with design and development. However, there are a number of companies out there that can help you achieve the results you desire. Clark Dental, with over 40 years’ experience of helping dental professionals create the practice of their dreams, are one such company – and always look forward to meeting new professionals and taking on exciting projects.

For more information call Clark Dental on 01268 733 146, email [email protected] or visit

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