An Interview with Affordable Dentures & Implants
Karol Twilla, Vice President of Practice Operations, Affordable Care
In just a few short years, many Affordable Dentures & Implants practices across the United States have exploded in implant case acceptance. Karol Twilla, vice president of practice operations for Affordable Care, recently shared some insight into how the network of almost 230 affiliated practices is disrupting the world of tooth replacement.
Inside Dentistry (ID): How did Affordable Dentures & Implants become the entity that it is today?
Karol Twilla (KT): The affiliated practice network today spans across 39 states, but it came from humble beginnings. In 1975, two dentists in Kinston, North Carolina realized many local patients had no access to affordable dental care, particularly for dentures. Today, more dentists around the country are discovering upon affiliation with us that they can spend less time on business operations and focus their energy on what they do best—help patients. This is made possible through on-site dental labs and 360° non-clinical support from Affordable Care. Now, many of those affiliates are applying the same approach with dental implants to provide the capabilities and technology their patients are asking about.
ID: What makes Affordable Dentures & Implants unique in the dentistry field?
KT: The practice owner dentists who choose to affiliate with Affordable Dentures & Implants are laser focused on tooth replacement services. Instead of cleanings and fillings, most provide only dentures, implants, and extractions, but they are relentless and passionate about all three. In turn, we’re passionate about helping them make that dream a reality.
Our vision is simple and codified—we are becoming the world leader in tooth replacement.
ID: How do these unique characteristics benefit practice owners who choose to become involved with your company?
KT: Our practice model is highly successful and proven. For affiliated owners, that means 100% ownership of their practices through professional corporations and retention of all the decision-making, clinical or otherwise. They have non-clinical support when it is needed, so they can spend more time with patients than they might in a traditional private practice.
Many of the newer affiliates tell us that our Clinical Pathway for Excellence in Implantology provides the best facilitation of training, continuing education, and even cone-beam imaging and other technology to help them establish the implant practice they’ve always wanted to build. Most affiliates enjoy better-than-average earning potential. Combined with our brand recognition among patients nationwide, it’s a highly lucrative ownership proposition for dentists who feel motivated to deliver tooth replacement care.
ID: Does Affordable Dentures & Implants have any charitable affiliations or missions? How do you get involved with them?
KT: Absolutely. You don’t get in the business of serving underserved populations without feeling a sense of duty and it’s incredibly important not only to many of our affiliates and lab technicians, but even among Affordable Care management and staff.
We choose to sponsor America’s Dentists Care Foundation, a national nonprofit dedicated to delivering free oral healthcare to underserved patients through Mission of Mercy clinics around the United States. Our lab technicians are uniquely capable of making a real difference at these events each year. In addition to financial support, a number of technicians will travel on their own dime to craft partials for dozens of people—at no cost to them—over the span of just a couple of days.
ID: What are Affordable Dentures & Implants’ future plans for expansion, practice growth, and charitable participation?
KT: For 40 years, our affiliates have delivered denture treatment to thousands of patients who had nowhere else to turn. We now understand that anyone can be underserved, so we plan to apply those things Affordable Dentures & Implants does best—treating people with dignity and respect at affordable fees, often with same-day service—to new channels within the tooth replacement world, like implantology. That has inspired a great deal of excitement among the clinicians who choose to affiliate with us, and even the dental lab technicians who join Affordable Dentures Dental Laboratories and go through our lab institute.
We call it the “democratization of the smile”—that simple idea that everyone deserves the opportunity for tooth replacement treatment. Through our unique ability to accomplish that, we truly believe we can change the face of dentistry.