The Group Dentistry Now Show: The Voice Of The DSO Industry – Episode 38

Tom von Sydow, COO of the Cornerstone Group joins the podcast for his second appearance! Cornerstone Group consists of three main businesses: Cornerstone Dental Specialties, which is their endodontic mobile services DSO, advanced surgical training center, and their dental product development company.  If you want to understand how a successful specialty DSO operates, this podcast is for you!

Our podcast series brings you dental support and emerging dental group practice analysis, conversation, trends, news and events. Listen to leaders in the DSO and emerging dental group space talk about their challenges, successes, and the future of group dentistry.

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Full Transcript:

Bill Neumann:

Welcome everyone to the Group Dentistry Now show, I am Bill Neumann and the gentleman we have here has been here before, so we had Tom von Sydow. He was on the show of April of 2019, so I’m thinking back, he was the second podcast we did and April 2019 doesn’t sound like it was that long ago, but in COVID time, it’s like three lifetimes ago. So there’s been a lot of change at Cornerstone and that’s where Tom is the COO. And we’ll find out about that change and what Tom thinks of COVID and how it’s affected the DSO space, especially, how it’s affected their business, but welcome back, Tom.

Tom von Sydow:

Thank you. It’s good to be here.

Bill Neumann:

So I’ll give you a little bit of background on Tom, just in case you didn’t have the opportunity to hear Tom’s bio the first time he was on back in April. So Tom von Sydow is the COO of the Cornerstone Group. And the Cornerstone Group is actually made up of three main businesses. So there’s the Endodontic Mobile Services, that’s their DSO. We’ll talk about that business in a minute. And then the Advanced Surgical Training Center and then their products company. So those are the three businesses, we’ll talk about all those. And prior to that, or prior to this being at Cornerstone, Tom was the COO of Acuity Eye Group.

Bill Neumann:

And then before that, he was in the DSO space, he was with PDS, Pacific Dental Services, he had a couple of positions there. He was the VP of Strategy and Platform Development. And then prior to that position, he was the Vice President of Specialties, where he led the effort to drive all their non-general dentistry business lines. Tom has been in the healthcare field since 1981 and he started his career in the US Navy as a hospital corpsman. He holds a bachelor of science in healthcare management from SIU Carbondale, and he has advanced leadership certificates from Harvard. So Tom, welcome back. It has been a while and like I said, I don’t think I’m exaggerating when you think of April 2019, fast forward to about a year and a half and there’s been quite a bit of change in the world and certainly in the DSO space.

Tom von Sydow:

Yes, there has been. It’s been quite a year, it’s been a while.

Bill Neumann:

So let’s talk, let’s get an update since our last discussion so maybe we can talk a little bit about those three main businesses that you have. We’ve got the DSO, obviously, the Products Division and then the training center.

Tom von Sydow:

Yeah, even with, we’ll talk a little bit later about that, but even this year, our services business is exploding. We added seven more endodontists to our group, they came onboard in July. Most of those were new graduates from residency programs all over the country, Nova, NYU, so it’s all over the map, as far as the programs they went to. And that brought our group up to around 40 active endodontists. So we’re in about 250 locations and 13 states. We’re currently on track to do somewhere in the neighborhood of 550 to 600 days of endodontics a month as by the end of December. The seven clinicians that we’ve brought onboard, it takes a little time to ramp, because of the credentialing process and things of that nature and that just getting folded into the system, but we anticipate somewhere between 550 and 600 days of endo a month by the end of December, which represents about a 25% growth over last year we brought on the group.

Tom von Sydow:

We brought up a few during the year as well, but it’s going very well, we’ve broadened our customer base, we work with multiple different groups now. We’ve got two or three more in negotiations talking to us about adding our services to their portfolio. We did get hit with COVID a little bit and I think we’re going to talk about that a little bit later, but we’re back up to full steam now and very excited, we’ve got a great group of clinicians. We actually turned seven docs away. One of the things we’ve learned over the course of doing this for 16 years as an organization and me being here for three years is we’ve honed in on our profiling, if you will, of a candidate that’s going to fit well on a mobile platform, working in itinerary fashion, working at multiple locations over the course of a month.

Tom von Sydow:

So a lot of these guys and gals work 15, 16, 17 days a month. And so, getting someone that’s used to that environment, not having to have things quite their own way all the time, it’s a real big part of it. I would say that over the last, and in my experience at Pacific as well, working with lots and lots of mobile specialists, I’d say that most failures happen when it comes to the personality side, it’s really not a clinical issue. And when I say personality, I don’t mean negative, everybody is their own unique individual, but some people just tend to fold into this model better than others and I think a lot of DSOs struggle with the turnover of specialists and not understanding the fundamental reason why sometimes these things fail. I think we’ve unlocked the secret sauce if you will, it’s really about the onboarding process, but pre-onboarding, it’s really digging in with that clinician and doing sit-down face to face interviewing, walking through, pressure testing the concept with them of what the days really are like, how it works and flushing out the relationships that are probably not going to survive.

Tom von Sydow:

And so I think this last group we brought on, these seven we brought on, I mean, they’re all perfectly suited for this model, they’re all hitting the ground excited, they’re running, they’re not walking with trepidation. So I think we’re getting better and better with that. As far as the Training Center goes, again, that just launched during the … Our first class was supposed to be, I think, March 30 something. So obviously we had to nix that, put a bunch of advertising out there. We’ve created what we’re calling, our first major offer is what we’re calling the SMART 30 minute Root Canal and it’s a way to approach doing root canals that we teach general dentists.

Tom von Sydow:

So in the organization here, and some of the folks watching this podcast, take a look at it, it’s C-T-I, Charlie, Tom, India, ctidental.org, not.com, but.org. And you can get a list of all the upcoming courses, but these courses are designed to take a general dentist to no matter what their level of skill doing endo, we bring them up to the next level. And the goal is for them to be able to do a molar root canal within 30 minutes in a safe, reliable, predictable, measurable way. And this was developed through our, we’ve done over a million root canals in this organization. The lead clinician on this is Dr. Alnatour, a Harvard grad, has been practicing for 10 years, Dr. Abedi and him worked together collaboratively.

Tom von Sydow:

And really, it’s about a methodology, and we have these customized kits with all the products you need to do a root canal set up for you, they’re disposable, they’re meant to be single use, but our technology, our approach … So it’s a hands-on course, there’s live case demonstration in our training centers, because we have three operatories. You have a microscope, all the things you need. And we’re actually kicking off a virtual version of this, so we just did our first one, Friday and Saturday where we actually mail all the hand pieces, the apex locator, we mail a typodont, we mail a mannequin head. We mail the mount for the table and you could actually go online and for the first two or three hours or four hours of the course, you actually do interact with the instructor via video and then go off on your own and you can work the rest of it on your own time.

Tom von Sydow:

We are going to come up with a watch and forward version of this too, to see what the clients like, but you get 13 CEUs out of this program and we’re taking advantage of some of the folks who still can’t travel, don’t want to travel. Who’d like to do something alternate than travel. And so we’re launching that for the next course, which I believe is in November, we’re going to have that as an offering, like we said, we did our first pilot last week, it worked really, really well. So you get everything you would get in the environment in the training center. We recommend that you do most of the work in your office or the office, so that you’ve got an x-ray unit to take x-rays of the teeth. And then you can debrief the cases with the instructor, just like you would in the live course.

Tom von Sydow:

And of course, when we do the live cases, we’ve got microscope cameras so we can broadcast that to the students. So, really excited about that, the SMART 30 Minute Root Canal. We had a lot of uptake on it before COVID and then like I said, we’ve done three of these courses now, and we’re learning every one we do, we’re getting better and better at it. We’re hoping to layer on some other training into the program or to the Training Center. Some other endodontic procedures, maybe some implants, hopefully some sedation courses and maybe some oral surgery courses, perio courses, hygiene laser courses.

Tom von Sydow:

So once we get back into full swing in 2021, we’ll start to add additional curriculums and other types of programs for the various audiences, we’re not just endodontic. Lastly is the Products Division. So, really excited, we have our first royalty program, our first product that came out, we decided not to distribute it. So we did a royalty deal with Brasseler. So it’s called the Accufile, it’s a file that has the attachment for the apex locator on the handle versus the shaft. So anybody who knows about endo will pick up what that means, but they really liked it, we worked with them to refine it. So they started distributing that and selling that, I think it was July 1st. So that was our first commercial success, if you will.

Tom von Sydow:

And what we’re really excited about though, is the GEMS procedure, which is it’s a minimally invasive approach to apical surgery. So, it’s a patented approach to doing apical surgery, utilizing a guided … It stands for guided endodontic microsurgery. That’s what GEMS stands for, guided endodontic microsurgery, but we’re going to be able to take the root tips off and retro fill the tooth and then put the bone grafting in, all in a very minimally invasive approach using guided surgery, stents, proprietary guides, proprietary tools, and be able to do these procedures hopefully within 20 to 25 minutes.

Tom von Sydow:

Just to the audience that may not be clinically orientated. I’m not an endodontist, I did not stay at a Holiday Inn last night, but been around this stuff now. So the co-surgery is probably one of the most complicated surgeries that is done at dentistry today. Even most of your endodontist don’t do it. So this could potentially radically revolutionize the ability for even general dentist to do this procedure. And why is it important? Two reasons why it’s important.

Tom von Sydow:

Number one, with cone beam there’s more diagnosis being done of these lesions. So, no X-ray or other type of radiograph times thoselesions are not apparent or they look like something else, a shadow or something, and they’re missed. With cone beam you miss them. You know it’s a lesion and it’s got to be treated. The reason it needs to be treated, as just like endodontic disease, causes an inflammatory response in the body, and there could be other systemic issues that arise from this latent lesion, this infection in the surrounding bone tissue around the tooth that could be causing other issues.

Tom von Sydow:

So it’s really important if you find a lesion to treat the lesion. And currently, if they find, a lot of times, they just extract the tooth, clean it out and put an implant in, which is an acceptable treatment. But I think everybody would agree if you can keep your natural dentition in place and you have a robust way of doing that in a minimally invasive approach, then that would be a better alternative. So really excited about that. It’s also going to be a lot of training that’s going to go with that in the training center, but stay tuned for that. We’re hoping to launch a white paper and the whole thing at the American Association of Endodontics in the spring.

Bill Neumann:

Excellent. Yeah, it sounds like you’re busy for sure.

Tom von Sydow:

Couple of things going on.

Bill Neumann:

So it’s ctidental.org for the training.

Tom von Sydow:

Correct.

Bill Neumann:

And we’ll put a link up for the people watching the video. So you have-

Tom von Sydow:

Yeah, we’re actually real creative around here. So it’s, yeah, ctidental.org for the training, it’s cspdental.com for the products, cornerstone specialty products, and then it’s cdsdental.com for our service business. So yeah, we’re pretty creative with our URLs.

Bill Neumann:

There you go. Now once you get back to the live training, that’s in Irvine, California, right? That’s where you have that.

Tom von Sydow:

Training is in Irvine. Yes. We own the building. We built it out about a year and a half ago.

Bill Neumann:

Yeah, actually, I think when we did the last or the first podcast in April, we shot it from the training center.

Tom von Sydow:

One of the things we do in the training center is we partnered up with a charity in Orange County, mostly veterans, but disenfranchised people in need. And it’s called the Lestonnac clinic. And they see patients medical and dental, but they didn’t have a surgical partner for implants and advanced surgery cases. So we volunteer to take care of their patients for free, and our clinicians volunteer, our staff volunteers. So it turns out they had about six or seven patients today that needed various forms of treatment. And we use the training center when we do that. So that’s why I’m broadcasting from my home office here in Oceanside.

Bill Neumann:

Yeah, really cool. Well, that’s good. I mean, it’s nice that you’re giving back, so we’ll let you have a pass on not having us at the training center. It’s probably nice to be home too, or maybe not since a lot of us are stuck at home. So speaking of that and it leads right into the next question. Let’s talk a little bit about the dominant topic really of the year, which is COVID. You all as an organization did pretty well. So I think maybe it’d be kind of interesting to talk a little bit about what you saw during early March, April is it really focused on endodontics you probably were considered essential or emergency in most cases. And then what did you see just around the industry in general?

Tom von Sydow:

Yeah. Well, it’s definitely the hottest topic in the world right now. Right? So yeah, I mean, we were blessed and I mean that sincerely. We chose endodontics as a profession, but never knowing that, that would be critical success factor if you will, to survive this thing. But we were busy. I have to say that without exception, every one of our endodontists, they all worked. A few of them took a little bit of time off, because they had parents that were elderly, but they all worked through the crisis.

Tom von Sydow:

We were collaborating with our clients trying to help them out. And we stayed fairly busy. Obviously we had a precipitous drop right at the beginning of March and April. I think we went down probably 25, 30% in volume, which paired to some of the other … Like I said, we were blessed some of these other obviously specialties being in and the other ones, orthodontics, pediatrics went down to zero.

Tom von Sydow:

So I don’t take that lightly, but we started to rebound in may, and then sincerely by June, our volumes were pretty close to pre COVID.  Our clients needed to get their patients that they were in pain, or they had an active infection. So they needed that taken care of. And like I said, all the docs that work at our organization are independent contractors. So we have a contract with them and we have a contract with our client, but they have the right to not work. They’re not employees. So really proud of all of them. They downed their PPE, we got N95 masks.

Tom von Sydow:

We have face shields. We had all the PPE. We immediately went out and bought a boatload of it. Got it into our warehouse, because in our model, we supply all of our specialists with all the supplies they need and the equipment they need to execute their day. The only thing that we use from the client’s perspective is their dental chair, their sterilization area, their waiting room, and some of our clients bill out the patient and pay us. But as far as like files, we’ve got gutta percha paper points, all that kind of stuff. We normally supply all that. Normally we don’t supply gowns and masks, but in this case we stepped right in, got the N95 masks, got all the stuff. We geared our people up with face shields and got everybody protected. So as far as coming out of this, we’re back to normal, if you will.

Tom von Sydow:

We are, our volumes are actually better than they have been. As I mentioned, where our days are back to full steam, the doctors that are working, are working the amount of days that they’ve committed to us. We’ve got some that work as few as 10 or 11. Most of them were between 16 and 18. We’ve got some that work 20 and some that work 22. So they’re all kind of back to full steam, where they’re supposed to be.  I’ve been dealing with a lot of dentists, obviously not just in the DSO space.

Tom von Sydow:

So what my experience has been is that anybody that was aligned with some type of organization, whether it be a DSO, a group, a network, some type of a realization that had, not independent, but additional resources looking out at the broader picture happening and kind of helping them take the right focus to do the right things during the period of time.

Tom von Sydow:

I think they’re fairing much better. I have had a lot of conversations and been out in the Midwest and met with a lot of general dentists that were not part of a group. And they seem to be struggling a little bit more. There’s still a lot of stop signs on the door. You got to call to get in. Their patient flows are down. I don’t know if they didn’t access the PPP as fast. I’m sure some of them accessed it, but I don’t know. There again, when you’re a part of a group there was a concerted effort to kind of get the group practices to get that benefit that the government was offering and streamline that process and you have attorneys on staff and accountants on staff and bankers on speed dial.

Tom von Sydow:

So I think that process was probably slower for some of the general practices as well. But the feeling I’m getting is coming back. I’m following the ADA, Marco’s, his presentations, I’m reading a lot of this stuff and keeping my ears to the ground. And I got a lot of friends in dentistry, both on the sales side, as well as dental friends. So I’m talking to people from industry, I’m talking to salespeople and ortho got hit pretty hard. My daughter actually is a manager at a big group in San Diego that’s a pedo ortho platform, but based … She said they were starting to come back but it was a little slower than some of the others.

Bill Neumann:

Yeah. And that makes total sense. Well, good news. Yeah, and I’ve been hearing similar from the generals. I think if you … And the other thing that I’ve heard is if you were in good shape prior to COVID, you came out much quicker than somebody maybe that was struggling financially, there was some doom and gloom talk of some larger DSOs filing for chapter 11 or bankruptcy protection. And whether, I think there were a couple that did, I don’t think there were the numbers of them that people anticipated.

Bill Neumann:

So, all in all, it could have been a lot worse. So, let’s move away from COVID. Everybody would be happy if we move away from COVID. Let’s talk about like, just your idea and thoughts on what you all do. So mobile surgery services, what do you think the trend is, the trajectory for now, until … Let’s take, if you had to guess, what does next year look like for things? Do you see growth? What do you think?

Tom von Sydow:

Well, I never want to get too far off ahead of my skis on this, but I definitely, if my grandson just left the house this morning, right, he’s six years old. If I was giving him advice and he wanted to become a dentist, I’d probably say, ‘Go become an endodontist. And the first thing you need to do is go out and buy a brick and mortar building and try to build a practice.” Now that may work in Lafayette, Louisiana, that may work in Columbia, Missouri that may work in Centralia, Illinois, or some of these rural markets where there’s a very, very few endodontists within a hundred mile radius.

Tom von Sydow:

But you know, California, New York, Florida, Texas, Arizona, the Sunbelt markets where there’s a preponderance of or overwhelming number specialists, whether it be oral surgeons, periodontists, endodontists and I’m speaking to this specifically, the surgical specialties. I think that there’s more and more desire to either do two things, either do a mobile platform or do a spoken hub.

Tom von Sydow:

And the challenge was spoken hub is you still have to make the patient leave the primary practice and travel to another location to have the services rendered, even if it’s in the same network. I think that’s going to be problematic long-term for the patient. I think patients, especially COVID or post COVID, are going to get used to the fact that they try to get their services rendered quickly. So one or two or three appointments? So in our model, in the majority of the time, not always, but overwhelming majority of the time patient comes into the clinic is either diagnosed with a latent lesion or something that’s painful, usually painful or uncomfortable. The dentist says, I can get you out of pain today. They open and medicate the tooth and they bring him back to see us. And that patient generally, if they’re in an office that has a chairside milling can generally get their final crown .

Tom von Sydow:

So you’re talking about two visits, basically, whereas in the traditional model or even a spoken hub model, they come in with pain.They probably won’t open in bed. They’ll probably just give them pain relief, some antibiotics, they’re going to ship them across town. They’re going to get in eventually, hopefully soon. And then they’re going to have to see the specialist, maybe one or two times, and then they don’t have to travel all the way back. And then they’re going to get an impression, and then they’re going to get a crown. I mean, this is a very inefficient system. And especially if you’re in a market where this is more rural or even outward suburbia, it probably works just fine in Manhattan, because they go from the second floor to the third floor.

Tom von Sydow:

Or if you’re at 550 Sutter street in downtown San Francisco where there’s like 500 dentists in one building, probably not that inconvenient, but you know, if you’re in st. Charles, Missouri, and the closest is Webster groves, which is a 40 minute drive, it’s probably not the best system. And even if you’re at BSL, if you’re shipping them out or you’re shipping them. It’s probably not the best system.

Tom von Sydow:

So I’m very bullish on this. And it’s like anything in life, follow the money. You know, we get calls all the time about PE money wanting to get involved in surgical specialties in dentistry, right? I’m sure there’s lots of activity in general dentistry still a DSOs and that kind of stuff. But there seems to be in the … Even pre COVID. We just did call two days ago.

Tom von Sydow:

We’re not interested in a financing deal right now, but we always talk to people because it’d be stupid not to talk to people. So we always talk to people to evaluate where we’re at. Evaluate our proposition against the markets. And there seems to be a real heightened interest in specialty dental practices. And this mobile thing is very intriguing to everybody we talked to. So obviously I’m biased. Of course, I think my model is the one that the market’s going to go toward, but I would have no problem being challenged that topic in a debate to find out why someone would think that a brick and mortar traditional crosstown referral, new paperwork, do they take my insurance? Are they going to be nice to me?

Tom von Sydow:

And by the way, in our case, they’re in pain. Right? So to top everything else off our patients are almost generally in pain. So their anxiety levels are already through the roof. Maybe if you’re an orthodontic referral or something like that where it’s not super … Or wisdom teeth, maybe you could make the argument it’s not a big deal, they can schedule it three months from now. Not a major issue, but endodontics I think is definitely heading there.

Bill Neumann:

Yeah. Yeah. Good stuff. So, let’s tag on to that one then. So there are some DSOs out there that you might want to call them super dentists, where the general dentist is doing everything. So they’re doing the endo, they’re doing the ortho. The general dentist is doing everything. I mean, so what’s that over maybe using whether it’s Cornerstone or just having their own specialists in there. What are you seeing as far as trends go? What do you think best practices would be?

Tom von Sydow:

You know, it’s a great question. I got to walk a fine line here, because I don’t want to criticize somebody’s business model because at the end of the day, it might work very well for them. And I don’t think there’s really a right or wrong answer, but I will tell you what I’ve seen and working with … I work with one group that’s transitioning from that kind of philosophy. When you’re using a super dentist model, especially with certain procedures, there is some nuance and repetitiveness that … If a GP has done 3000 root canals, they’re probably going to do a root canal as good or better than an endodontist, right? That’s a no brainer, right? But to take a young associate, who’s just learning crown and bridge. Who’s just learning denture, who’s just learning maybe implant restorations. How far down the curve are they going to be before they can become competent at doing a molar root canal, right?

Tom von Sydow:

How much energy are you going to expend on that associate to get them to a point where their clinical is at a standard that people would accept? Is it a 100 root canals? Is it 200 root canals? It could be a little different depending on the clinicians gifts, tactical gifts and where they do dentistry, but there’s definitely an issue there. Now, if you’re an acquisition company and you’re vacuuming up offices where the general dentist has been in practice for 10 or 15 years, it may not be an issue, right?

Tom von Sydow:

They may have already done a 1,000 or 2,000 root canals, and it’s just another part of their day. But what we’re finding is, is that I think what’s going to happen is eventually people will start to recognize what is … I took, you mentioned, I took a leadership course at Harvard.

Tom von Sydow:

One of them was leadership and professional service organizations. And one of the professors did it in a talk. The initial talk was on Mickey Mouse, Walt Disney, right? And really the theme of his lecture was Mickey Mouse, because everything Disney does is built around that brand of Mickey Mouse in some form or fashion. It’s the core of the business. So I think some of these folks are going to have to ask themselves, what is my Mickey Mouse and why am I doing what I’m doing when I could pay a special … Yeah, you’re going to split the fee with them. And that’s fee splitting, by the way, that’s illegal, but you’re going to bill out. You’re going to pay them a percentage of the fee. And if they’re doing 10 or 12 of these things a day and banging them out, you’re making money.

Tom von Sydow:

I mean, you’re making good money. And the overhead is the same, a little bit of staffing, a little bit of revenue cycle management that you have to may take care of, but you’re still paying rent. You’re still paying for the chair. And the patient’s getting service from a, you might find a referrals book because they get a service from a specialist. So like I said, I’m not going to try to criticize one path or another. And there are very many successful groups out there that do a super dentist model. Lots of them. I think in particular, endo is a challenge. I think they’re more complicated. Ortho is a challenge. I think some of your more advanced perio is a challenge. I think basic implants is not a challenge. I think basic implant restoration is not a challenge.

Tom von Sydow:

You could do full mouth cases, probably a challenge. Complicated wisdom teeth, probably a challenge. But endo seems to be the one that people tend to not like the most. I talked to a lot of dentists and, “Oh, I’ll get my own endo.” “Oh, great. Do you like doing it?” “No.” Okay. But if I was consulting a dental service organization or group practice, and they asked me my opinion, I would say, I would seriously consider, and this is going to sound self-serving, it’s not, it’s the truth, I would seriously consider analyzing the true return on invested capital on the training, on the education, on the ongoing training, on what’s your turnover rate. Why are you doing this versus doing something else?

Tom von Sydow:

If you did two crowns in the same time slot, you could do one molar root canal. What would be the return on that? I can tell you right now, it’d be much higher. So what’s your Mickey Mouse. What is your Mickey Mouse? That’s what I would say to them. What is your Mickey Mouse? And if your Mickey Mouse is super dentist, great, then that’s your Mickey Mouse. I’m not going to argue with you about that.

Bill Neumann:

Good stuff. Okay. What’s your Mickey Mouse. That’s a new one for me. So maybe we’ll title the podcast, what’s you’re Mickey Mouse.

Tom von Sydow:

It does tend to focus you though. It’s a really good … I use it all the time now. You know, we start diverging down these paths. Is that our Mickey Mouse? No. Okay. Let’s move back.

Bill Neumann:

I love it. It gives you a focus. So we have time for like one last question. So anything else new, anything we might’ve missed covering today?

Tom von Sydow:

Well, the only thing that’s new, we are launching a new, not that I have nothing else to do. We are launching a new company. It’s basically an extension of Cornerstone Dental Specialty. So it’s not really new. It’s taking what we’ve done for 17 years and more of the group practice of the larger practice settings and moving that to more of the mid America segment. So we’ve got a trailer that we’ve designed. It’s a technology platform. Inside that trailer we have a cone beam scanner. We have a chairside milling machine, 3D printer, intraoral scanner, and all the equipment we need to do implants and endodontics initially. And what the trailer will do is it’ll show up in front of the office of a general dentist who may or may not have all this technology. Maybe they have a cone, maybe they don’t have the chair side.

Tom von Sydow:

Maybe you have a chair side and not the cone beam. And we’ll have a couple cell towers in there and with access to a lot of expertise around the country. Specialists that are semiretired that will be available to chat with these guys as well. And it’s really a technology platform and we’re going to pull up and do much like we do in a lot of our group settings. We have the patient set up, eight or nine patients, seven or eight patients, whatever the number is. We’ll go in, we’ll do the treatment on the patient. We’ll mill the crown for them if it’s an endo patient. We’ll get a cone beam, if we need a cone beam and they can utilize the technology and the trailer while we’re there. But basically it’s a way for us to bring a high-end great experience to the patient and to the dentist in these more rural markets.

Tom von Sydow:

So central Missouri, central Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Indiana, Southern Illinois. And we’ve got our first one built, it’s in Nashville right now. We don’t know if we’re going to deploy it there or st. Louis, but we’ve got it built, we’re wrapping it today. It’s got all the technology on it. This was custom built from scratch. And then we’re also going to take care of all the built for the GP, because they don’t have all the infrastructure DSOs have.

Tom von Sydow:

So we’re going to take care of all the billing, everything. All they have to do is set the patient up on the schedule and we take it from there. We’re going to take care of everything on the back end. And there’s a way for the dentist to monetize this that’s legal, ethical, moral, no issues. I won’t go into details on that, but there is a way for the dentist to monetize this. So they get a little something for the effort and yeah, we’re really excited about it. It’s called Surgicaldds360, and we’re hoping to get the first one rolling in either Missouri or Tennessee by January 1st.

Bill Neumann:

Really cool Surgicaldds360. Yeah. Nice, good stuff. So four businesses, three main businesses and a startup.

Tom von Sydow:

And a startup, that’s correct.

Bill Neumann:

So you’re busy. So maybe when we do the podcast-

Tom von Sydow:

But all in our Mickey Mouse.

Bill Neumann:

Right, there you go. Maybe next year there’ll be a fifth business, who knows? Maybe I don’t want to wish that on you. Well, good stuff. Well, thanks for the update, Tom. It’s always a pleasure and appreciate the time you’ve taken. And like I said, it sounds like you’re busy now with four businesses. Anyway, I think that’s probably all the time we have today for Group Dentistry Now Show. So again, Tom von Sydow. Thanks for joining us. Once again, we’ll see you in 2021, when COVID’s passed or there’s a vaccine. We’re going to wish all good wishes and maybe there’ll be another business that you’ll have to talk about, but thanks again to Tom from Cornerstone.

Tom von Sydow:

You bet.

Bill Neumann:

And until next time I’m Bill Neumann from the Group Dentistry Now Show.

Speaker 1:

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