'This dynamic is completely out of balance': The challenge of DSOs working with payers

Tension between DSOs and practice owners and payers is growing as operating costs continue to rise while reimbursement rates remain low.

Michael Schwartz, chair and CEO of Specialty Dental Brands, connected with Becker's on Dec. 6 to discuss DSO-payer relations in today's economy.

Editor's note: This response was edited lightly for clarity and brevity.

Question: What challenges are DSOs up against in 2023?

Michael Schwartz: One of the biggest challenges is working with insurance companies due to the rising input costs hitting dental offices such as labor shortages and wage and supply inflation. Every dental office in the U.S. has seen these expenses dramatically increase, yet the average dental insurance company provides fee increases of 3 percent if you are lucky every two to five years. This dynamic is completely out of balance. The legislation passed in Massachusetts in November is the first step in addressing this problem.

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