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Episode #278: 7 Steps to Drop Your Bad PPOs, with Dave Monohan

communication education leadership marketing the best practices show podcast Feb 26, 2021

Episode #278: 7 Steps to Drop Your Bad PPOs, with Dave Monohan

Subscribe to the Best Practices Show Podcast: www.actdental.com/bps 

Are you tired of dealing with bad PPOs in your practice? Many dentists are, but have a hard time moving away from them. And to teach you how, Kirk Behrendt invites Dave Monohan, CEO of Kleer, to talk about the seven steps you need to know to drop your bad PPOs. If you're a dentist who’s frustrated with insurance and wants to take action, listen to Episode 278 of The Best Practices Show for Dave’s advice!

Main Takeaways:

  • Step one: face your fears.
  • Step two: implement a dental membership plan.
  • Step three: stop offering discount plans.  
  • Step four: analyze your PPOs.
  • Step five: renegotiate or drop bad PPOs.
  • Step six: support your patients through the transition.
  • Step seven: market to new patients.


  • “Dental insurance went from broken to obsolete because of COVID-19. And it’s a point now where dental practices are basically at the breaking point. A lot of dental insurance is just completely unprofitable for dental practices now.” (06:10—06:23)
  • “What we see with our practices that offer a membership plan is patients who get the membership plan, relative to uninsured or uncovered patients, will come in two to three times more often and they’ll accept twice the amount of treatment.” (08:23—08:35)
  • “When a patient has a plan — it doesn't have to be a membership plan; it can be another plan, just so they have a plan — they come in two to three times more often.” (09:56—10:03)
  • “75% of treatment acceptance comes as part of your hygiene visit. So, if you're coming in for your hygiene visit, you end up accepting a lot more treatment. That's the simple math. And it ends up being you drive about twice the production for membership plan patients versus uninsured patients.” (10:32—10:45)
  • “What we hear from a lot of dental practices is they have a lot of frustrations and anger towards insurance. But they don't take action to move away. And the reason is they're worried, and they have fear that if they make significant changes to their PPOs, they potentially will impact their production, how many patients they have, their profitability.” (13:44—14:05)
  • “The number-one surprise we see is actually how many [PPOs] are unprofitable for practice . . . Anywhere between half and 60% or 70% of the PPOs that dental practices are accepting are actually creating negative profit for their practice.” (15:36—15:57)
  • “Just get rid of the discount plan. You don't need it anymore. Your membership plan takes the position of the discount plan, and it’s much better for you and it’s much better for the patient.” (23:08—23:16)
  • “The average in the U.S. right now, a dental practice is in network with 15 dental clients. It’s gone up. About 10 years ago, it was five. It’s now 15. And so, a lot of practices are just bringing in whatever, not even knowing it’s profitable for their practice.” (24:56—25:15)
  • “If you're going to threaten that you're going to move away from [bad PPOs] or drop them, be ready to do it.” (30:58—31:04)
  • “When COVID-19 hit and the practices were shut down except for emergency care, we were still selling quite a few membership plans.” (38:42—38:48)
  • “If you don't control the dental plans that are in your practice, you won't control your practice.” (46:12—46:18)


  • Dave’s background and Kleer. (03:48—04:56)
  • Why this is important in dentistry. (05:41—06:23)
  • How Kleer can help create care plans. (7:05—08:48)
  • Data for uninsured patients’ behavior. (09:15—10:45)
  • The subscription plan is the new economy. (11:29—12:53)
  • Step one: face your fears. (13:10—14:42)
  • Biggest myth about PPOs. (15:27—16:33)
  • Step two: implementation. (17:03—19:42)
  • How smart pricing works. (19:57—21:09)
  • Step three: stop offering discount plans. (21:49—23:18)
  • Step four: analyze your PPOs. (23:46—26:06)
  • Shared networks. (26:30—28:34)
  • Step five: renegotiate or drop bad PPOs. (29:05—31:34)
  • Don't hyper-focus on dropping PPOs. (31:56—32:23)
  • Step six: support your patients through the transition. (32:51—35:07)
  • Patients double-dipping. (35:21—36:03)
  • Doing a fee analysis for practices. (36:56—37:50)
  • How to sell this to patients. (38:34—40:50)
  • Step seven: use this as a marketing tool. (41:26—43:10)
  • Talking to patients about your membership plan. (43:49—45:41)
  • Last thoughts and insights. (46:04—46:48)
  • Dave’s e-book and contact information. (47:01—48:10)

Reach Out to Dave:

Further Reading:

Dave’s e-book: https://www.kleer.com/ebooks/7-steps-drop-your-bad-ppos-playbook

Dave's Bio:

Dave Monahan has a passion for creating technology-enabled businesses that improve people’s lives. He founded Kleer and championed its mission from the beginning. He designed the Kleer platform based on dentist and patient feedback, curated a passionate and hardworking team, publicly advocates for dentists and patient rights, and continuously pushes the company to innovate and be better.

Prior to joining Kleer, Dave served as the CEO of FitLinxx, where he created simple and affordable wearable devices that enabled patients to monitor and manage chronic conditions and athletes to monitor and improve their performance. He also worked at Microsoft from 1999 to 2006, where he developed and implemented new product, market and partnering strategies that helped the company and thousands of its partners grow and improve profitability.

Dave received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Pennsylvania State University and an MBA in International Business from Loyola University. Dave is married, has three children, and resides in the Greater Philadelphia area.


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