Dental clinic design and construction has vastly progressed in our 30+ years’ industry experience. Technology has played a huge part in expanding and advancing our capabilities, but the biggest changes has resulted from our focus shift towards a patient-first approach to improve user experience.
These incredible advancements create greater choice and opportunity for those looking to design and construct a dental clinic, from the design process, clinic layout options, materials used, construction quality, and dental equipment during fit out.
While these all bring great value and advantages, it also increases the risk of making some wrong decisions throughout the process.
Here are our top tips to avoid common dental clinic design and construction mistakes:
LACK OF INDUSTRY EXPERIENCE
When undertaking a new build or renovation for your dental clinic, trust is key to achieving a seamless, stress-free project, as well as a better overall end result. Trusting your designer/architect and builder possesses the deep understanding of the day-to-day workings of your dental practice and most importantly, your patients.
The process itself – while rewarding in the long-term – can be stressful in the short-term. Having a team of experts to lean on to mitigate risk and guide you through from start to end is vital.
Investing in professionals that specialise in what you are trying to achieve, understand your vision and pain points, that have proven experience, will ultimately result in a more positive long-term outcome for you and your patients.
Our tip when deciding on your dental clinic design and construction team: do your research! Check out their client testimonials and reviews. Experience counts.
NO FUTURE PROOFING IN DESIGN
A new dental clinic is obviously a massive investment in your future, so be sure to consider your future goals in the planning and design phase.
Too often we’ve witnessed clinics designed and built “for the now” – not considering your patient base in 1, 5, 10 years’ time, future staffing requirements, etc.
Preparing for future growth is a crucial step to get right, as it safeguards your investment from requiring ongoing upgrades and further financial and time investment later on.
Things to consider:
- How will the practice function at capacity?
- Are the number of treatment areas in line with my growth goals?
- Can the carpark cater for X amount of growth in business year-on-year?
- Will the facilities such as a staff room, steri waiting room, lab, admin area, etc. cater for operating at capacity and future growth?
Being stressed out by growth is a great problem to have but not when your facilities do not allow for it, which can then lead to an overcrowded, unpleasant space for your patients and staff.
POOR PATIENT PRIVACY
From a patient-experience perspective, privacy in new or updated dental clinics is often overlooked. For example, swollen, in pain patients coming back through reception is not ideal for both the patient and others in the waiting area due to go in. It creates anxiety in your patients from multiple angles and is something easily avoided with considerate dental clinic design.
Another privacy pain point is the payment process. Many people don’t feel comfortable openly conversing about payment options in a quiet reception area in front of awaiting patients. Having a separate payment area to conduct these conversations puts your patient first and enhances your reputation.
POOR BUDGET ALLOCATION
A common yet critical error in dental clinic design is spending too much time and money on personal wants and under investing when it comes to patient needs. In other words, choosing aesthetics over clinic functionality.
Designing and building a new dental practice is a goal for many dental professionals. Cutting corners and costs is essentially cutting corners on your lifelong dream. Building a partnership with reputable, experienced professionals may be perceived as more expensive initially, but the long-term benefits far exceed this and provide an assured outcome for your project.
Don’t take the risk of looking to save on small items and lose the long-term benefit of an optimal, high-functioning, high-yielding space for your patients and staff.
Building, renovating, or fitting out a new or existing dental clinic should be an exciting next phase in your career as a dental professional or owner. Know what to look for and what to avoid, and the process will be rewarding for you and everyone who steps into your beautiful new dental clinic.
If you have any questions about dental clinic design and construction, please reach out to our friendly team.